The local garden centre has always been the place that the majority of Christmas shoppers traditionally visit to buy their tree. With the good news that choosing a real tree that has been locally sourced causes much less environmental impact than a fake one, garden centres nationwide will be bracing themselves for a very busy few weeks ahead. Looking around the modern garden centre today, it’s clear that a lot has changed in terms of what now attracts shoppers through the door and how the centre has adapted and responded to customer needs. It’s not just about the Christmas tree anymore – it’s a whole lot more!
The garden centre vision
Garden centres have completely re-positioned themselves in the market and effectively on the high street with what they can offer over and above other competing retailers. Rather than being pigeonholed by offering a limited range of products purely for the plant enthusiast, garden centres have spent time considering how to attract the non-gardener through the door as well as increasing share of wallet with loyal customers. The result has seen the emergence of a new type of shopping experience that entices more customers for longer. What it offers is lifestyle. What it offers is simplicity. What it offers is a relative refuge from the busy high street making it easy to shop. Modern garden centres have even been described akin to churches as many find their Sunday solace and inspiration there.
It’s not just about the Christmas Tree
Stepping into Haskins Roundstones in Rustington West Sussex, a client of ours, (and a personal MUST visit, Christmas just isn’t Christmas without a trip to Haskins!) it is a visual feast. A riot of colour and light, immaculate plant displays as well as their stunning Christmas shop – their Winter Wonderland. Both indoor and outdoor displays equally impressive and of course, hundreds of Christmas trees all waiting for their new owners! But take a closer look – alongside everything you would need to decorate your home for the festive season there is outdoor clothing, cards, glassware, tableware, ceramics, kitchen gadgets, novelty items, gifts and homewares even indoor furniture as well as specialty food and drink. Whilst you shop you can also take a break with either a coffee and a pastry or a traditional roast dinner! The garden centre has become a place to relax, to take time as well as inspiration for the home – all under one roof! Has this become the sophisticated version of the ‘mall’? The garden centre has become a place that’s constantly innovating as well as reflecting and embracing the changing seasons, just as we do at home and in our own gardens.
If you would would like to know more about our partnerships with garden centers such as Dobbies, Notcutts, Squires and Blue Diamond – please get in touch below!