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Trending Topics & Takeaways from 2023

As customer experience partners for retailers and other businesses with branded environments, Miller Zell provides clients an optimized collaboration of right and left brainers.

We’re all about purposeful innovation grounded in what customers want. Our creativity and efficient expertise are rooted in what’s now and what’s next.

So, as we transition from 2023 to 2024, let’s take a walk through some trending topics and takeaways from the past year that will provide insights into what’s ahead.


malls make a comeback

Innovation & Customer Experience: Malls Make a Comeback 

Shopping malls making a comeback? Yep. At least the innovative ones that evolved and created the retail experiences their customers want.

Here are four points to consider from malls that are thriving.


How a Creative Department Befriended AI

How a Creative Department Befriended AI

Paul Wolski, Miller Zell’s SVP Creative, described himself as a “designer who is admittedly a ‘wait-and-see’ adopter” with AI.

But when he joined an AI Steering Committee at Miller Zell, he embraced “this speeding train of innovation” as another tool in the kit for the design and development of branded environments.


store walk fresh eyes

Store Walk: Using Fresh Eyes to Review Your Customer Experience

When’s the last time you walked your store(s)?

Not just a superficial wander-through to make sure things are tidy and all the lighting worked, but a focused journey that intuited what your customers thought and felt as they navigated your store.

Consider these seven focuses for conducting a purposeful store walk that can yield insights that improve your overall customer experience.


Feed the beast blog banner FINAL

Feed the Beast: Mastering Digital Content Management

The synergy between captivating digital content and a well-thought-out operational approach creates a nexus that enhances the customer and associate experience and fuels ROI.

What’s required to be successful? Here’s a guide.


how retailers best serve the future of work

How Retailers Best Serve “The Future of Work”

Remote work? Back to the office? Or a hybrid model? How should retailers react to the mixed messages from customers, surveys and headlines on evolving, post-pandemic work norms?

Consider that the “new normal” is about maintaining agile thinking about what your customers want right now based on store-level data. And then follow their ongoing evolution.


Fixture Solutions- Five Steps to Ideal Execution

Fixture Solutions: Five Steps to Ideal Execution

If fixture procurement is no longer an overriding challenge, then what should retailers focus on as they refresh their store environments?

Retailers should refocus on a holistic understanding of costs and project execution that provides branded environmental upgrades that create ROI.


EUROSHOP 2023 BANNER blog post

EuroShop: More Impact for Customers and Less to the Planet

Tina Chadwick, Miller Zell’s SVP Strategy & Creative, traveled to EuroShop 2023 in Düsseldorf, Germany and came away with more than a few insights and takeaways.


Solutions for Three Common Challenges from Corporate to Store-Specific-blog

Solutions for Three Common Challenges from Corporate to Store-Specific

How can corporate marketing work with their regional and store teams to provide a localized yet brand-consistent experience? Let’s consider solutions for three distinct challenges that retailers regularly face:

  1. Fostering community connection
  2. Reacting to extreme weather events
  3. Hiring and retaining quality associates

And how about a look ahead to 2024?


six strategic focuses for branded environments d

Six Strategic Focuses for Branded Environments in 2024

Savvy retailers and other developers of branded environments seek purposeful innovation that serves customers and builds brand loyalty.

So here are six strategic focuses that should be front of mind as we look ahead to 2024.