Store of the Month October 2023: Liza Design
It’s always inspiring to hear about stores that have been run by the same family for generations, and that’s exactly what this month’s featured store has achieved. We have met Hanna Wallentin who is the fourth generation to run the shop of the month, Liza Design. The company, founded in 1974, was a manufacturer of various leather goods from the beginning. The store opened in 1986 in a basement and has grown to 500 square meters. Today, they sell bags, accessories, and shoes. Take part in the interview with Hanna below.
Can you share a tip on something you recently did to develop your business?
Over the past year, we have made significant investments in our store. This includes interior changes and rebuilding, such as installing new panel walls. Additionally, we have nearly doubled our range of shoes. Since the store remodel, we have received a lot of positive feedback from our customers. They believe that the merchandise is now more visible and the overall appearance has greatly improved.
What identifies as a good collaboration between supplier and store?
As a small family-owned store, it is important to us that our supplier does not have excessively high purchasing requirements. Unlike big chains, we cannot buy large quantities of multiple brands. We appreciate suppliers who understand this and instead of pressuring us to purchase unwanted shoes, assist us in finding the right varieties that suit our location.
What do you consider to be the most important aspect when it comes to the physical store?
The staff of course! Having knowledgeable and friendly staff members who genuinely assist customers is of utmost importance in the store. While we may not be able to compete with online prices, we can provide world-class service that online stores cannot offer. Additionally, the store’s appearance plays a significant role. If it is overcrowded and the merchandise is poorly displayed, customers will have difficulty finding what they need.
What is the most important lesson you’ve learned from running a store?
Balancing purchases in unpredictable weather conditions is always a challenge. For instance, last year’s unusually warm and pleasant autumn resulted in low sales of autumn shoes, as customers went straight from sneakers to warm lined boots. Similarly, this summer, with temperatures around 16 degrees and continuous torrential rain throughout July, sales of sandals were virtually non-existent. It is challenging to adjust purchasing decisions when the weather for the upcoming season is uncertain.
What is your strategy when it comes to your assortment?
There should be something for everyone! Throughout the years, we have taken into account our customers’ preferences for brands and models, and we try to offer options in various price ranges. For instance, we procure popular seasonal models from suppliers who offer them at a lower price in synthetic materials, as well as from other suppliers who prioritize higher quality at a slightly higher price. This approach ensures that there is an affordable and accessible option for everyone, regardless of their financial situation, when it comes to purchasing trending pieces.
Liza Design on social media:
In the picture above: Lena Rydh & Hanna Wallentin