A pilot scheme was recently launched by Oxfam to refit five of its stores. During the scheme, the selected stores are being refurbished using a variety of shop fittings, all created from materials already utilized by Oxfam, which works to save lives in poorer communities worldwide. The aim of the pilot scheme is to engage greater numbers of local people, helping them to understand the impact that they can have by working alongside the charity to make a difference to communities all over the world.
One of the stores, situated in Lancaster, opened at the end of October, providing information on various ways people can help the charity, such as volunteering, donating or just shopping at the Oxfam stores. In addition to the unusual shop fittings, store merchandising had been improved using bold retail display and signage which carried the brand style of Oxfam. The charity organizers want to create an inspirational and cheerful experience for visitors to the store. Oxfam has collaborated with existing teams in the charity shops, considering what works well currently and what can be improved.
The Oxfam stores last had a refit in 2001 so were possibly in need of some re-organisation work. The first pilot store to be completed opened in September this year and during the first week, sales increased by 89 per cent in comparison to the same week in 2011. It is hoped that the refit of the stores will increase the number of people who visit, wanting to know more about the charity.