Jeff Shockley, Radford University
Aleda V. Roth, Clemson University
Lawrence D. Fredendall, Clemson University

An information processing view of organizational design strategy is used to develop a conceptual model that addresses six theory-based operational constructs of retail store design strategy. Salient retail store design constructs pertain to 1) managing the customer’s in-store shopping task uncertainty (i.e., factors associated with the difficulty of product use by the end customers, the service production complexity, and the product turnover); 2) design choices for managing customer encounters (i.e., factors associated with design for self-service and employee task empowerment); and 3) customer service encounter information requirements, which is proposed to be the integrating mechanism driving retail store design strategy.

Contributions of this paper are:

  • A new organizational framework to understand and manage retail store design strategies.
  • A validated measurement instrument to use in evaluating and monitoring strategic store design choices.
  • A series of future store design applications for the measures and framework.


This article is a working paper which is currently under journal review as of December 31, 2009.