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Retail has had three phases, according to Katelijn Quartier, who heads the Retail Design Laboratory at Hasselt University in Belgium. ‘In Retail 1.0, the manufacturer was in charge and no designer was needed. Retail 2.0 was a phase where the retailer was in charge but hired an architect or interior architect to design the store following the brand’s or retailer’s ideas,’ she wrote in Retail Design, Theoretical Perspectives (Routledge). We have entered ‘Retail 3.0, a time when the customer is more and more in charge… This asks for much more from a designer than to translate a retailer’s identity into a store design and goes beyond mere functionality and efficiency – even more so now that a commodification of products, brands and retail is occurring’.

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