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Unconventional Retail

New unconventional retail opportunities are evolving to become a critical retail sales expansion in spaces that may not have been considered “Retail” .


Characterized By:

  • Less human sales support, more integrated product alignments.

  • Sales opportunities in alternative places, destinations.

  • More Hybridization or Collaboration of brands + offerings.

  • New services that redefine hospitality and customer needs.

  • Product interactions re-imagined, also for a more hygienic era. 

Contact us today to consult with the experts about the future of your brand:

Cubic is the source for merchandising and display solutions that produce results.

hotels and resorts
Cozy Bedroom


Hospitality in retail through the lens of a hotel brand is the one of the best examples to analyze because today an entire property can become a full extension of the brand experience; Lifestyle


Hotel brands have already expanded into many other retail businesses within their walls to satisfy guest needs. ie; Restaurant/Bars, Spas, Fitness, Branded Gift-shop & Sundries, Cafe's...are all more or less standard. 

Where they're headed now is to bring those services out of the gift-shop walls and into spaces around the properties that make the most sense. Guests will discover products in the lobby lounges, out on the golfcourse, in their rooms (of course). By moving displays into the integrated property, it fulfills the lifestyle not just emotionally but actually creates a place to experience "try" before you buy...or at the very least have staff bring you anything you'd like directly to your room or sent to your home. 

This segment of growth for retailers of all kids of product poses so much opportunity, which is also covered by much of the below further categories in more detail. 

Spa & health clubs
Yoga by the Pool


The flow of potential buyers in these unique selling environments is not new but the evolution of health and spa represents a fast-growing opportunity to extend the experience and brand in to additional retail.


Organized product and concise signage are required to be effective. Staff is often limited. Transactions at retail are often self-guided without the support of sales staff. Displays must be well lit. Solutions should grouped and organized by aligned categories with supporting signage and easy to access information.


Displaying all merchandise in one central “shop” is not as effective when compared to integrated points of display with aligned activities or treatments. The experience becomes less segmented and more aligned with the brand.


The design aesthetic must align with the brand and will often lean towards luxury in fit and finish

cafe and restaurants


Restaurants are some of the most fun places for retail because you don't expect to walk away from your meal with a part of the experience other than a full belly. 


The retail portion goes beyond branded t-shirts and glasses from the main restaurant itself. Partnered brands' products should be displayed amongst the dining experience to complete the world of offerings that is the unique customer experience. Tableware, decor and furnitures are definitely also for sale. Certain specific or locally sourced ingredients on the menu can be purchased directly from the restaurant and tacked onto your bill. All of these products are new sources of revenue that should be considered for your brand.


Restaurants are smart to also expand their product categories into services like knife sharpening and kitchenware techniques, small batch growler fills, food and drink pairing events with chef and distillery collaborations...even offering a gourmet menu for canine guests on the patio and pre-packaged to-go.  

Examples abound, and retail displays within these spaces more than help the bottom line. Again these ideas allow your diner's to take a part of the experience home with them and be a much larger promoter of your brand.

apparel & fashion
Fashion Spreads


This category is the master of collaboration projects to reach an ever broader combined audience in their seemingly never ending cycle of styles. It's invigorating because of the fast paced changes to fashion expressions, these brands must always stay on top of their changing customer archetypes. That is to say that people change, taste's change, and how you lead your fashionable followers on a journey they continue to identify with is the challenge.

Unconventional apparel has taken on so many forms that not a lot of selling angles feel truly "Unconventional" or new anymore. New forms really are a good mix of everything discussed in the previous sections, along with Hybridization and Colabs between two completely unalike products. Those new combinations are what make the future of fashion and all related accessories so successful.


At this point in history, three separate small designers with a growing brand may suffer alone, but combining forces with others keeps everyone in a better position to succeed. However different, the lifestyle of both types of combined customers should still be catered to but we guarantee there's more than just two to think about. 

Display solutions in this category abound, but with rapidly changing environments and product offerings it's best to invest in very flexible and modular fixturing that can adapt with the times. Cubic is a big promoter of this type of design thinking as is evident in our entire catalogue of offerings. 

Pop-ups, markets, outlets


The format isn't new, however these modes of selling deserve a second look even from brands that have a big retail presence in traditional stores. Why? Customers want to continually feel like they are apart of your story and connect with the brand on other levels. 

Smaller and combined retail formats are also extremely helpful for groups of individual makers and small brands to gain from the collective foot traffic, less overhead on the space, and an equal shift of energy to online and other services. These formats are the bottom line for many, and a new accelerator even for established brands. 


Here more than anywhere the displays pay to be professional and be a snapshot of the brand in it's more raw form. These are opportunities to have fun! Try out an experience or selling format that goes in the direction of your wishes for the business, test it on customers to see how they respond.


In a time when retailers have taken a major hit from the pandemic, these might prove to be the most valuable and pure expression retail can provide to get back on their feet again.  

Contact us today to consult with the experts about the future of your brand:

Cubic is the source for merchandising and display solutions that produce results. We understand the importance of the presentation and consider the details that many interior designers and architects need assistance with. We have developed proven, cost effective systems that simplify ordering and installation.

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