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High Street Hit or Miss: Next 8/10

Selling a lifestyle concept effectively, although tech features need attention



Clothing multiple - Intu Trafford Centre Manchester, first floor



Next is great at selling a family lifestyle. For spring 16 it sets the summer holiday tone with windows of mannequins in denim shorts, bikinis and sundresses surrounded by images of swimming pools and palm trees. Functional basics such as racer-back vests (£14) and crocheted cotton tops (£16) are neatly merchandised with trend-led striped palazzo pants (£35) and a textured bomber jacket (£34). Next lives up to its promise of offering good value and quality, as epitomised by a substantial trench (£55), which makes its competitors’ unstructured styles appear flimsy by comparison. The busiest store by far, Next’s double-height ceiling and wide aisles give shoppers room to breathe.


Although the addition of a self-scan order station is a great feature, when I try to scan an item to check for additional sizes or order online, the machine fails to recognise the barcode. The changing rooms are unmanned when I arrive which causes some confusion. Out on the shop floor the staff seem quite hands off, yet friendly when I ask a question.

Click here to see how other retailers performed.

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