Micro market design and installation should be part of the client experience

In this Q&A with Troy Geis, co-founder of Fixturelite, the industry’s leading supplier of micro market retail displays, equipment and design tools, Troy discussed the importance of design and how operators can use it to level the micro market playing field. He also urged operators to take steps to prepare for the installation process to protect their professional image.

Tullio: Why do you think micro market operators have a unique opportunity to level the playing field with their competitors when it comes to design?

Geis: A focus on design and how it relates to the customer experience is the big differentiator. When an operator uses the Fixturelite Design Tool to work side by side with their client to build a market that will deliver the perfect breakroom experience, that operator, no matter how large or how small, will enjoy a huge competitive advantage.

So, what you’re saying is, the operator’s commitment to customer experience with design in mind is the first step toward differentiation?

Absolutely. Design generates interest from the client. That’s the beginning of the operator’s overall commitment. The one thing that will absolutely level the playing field is your ability to show your client that you are committed to providing their employees a destination that is not only attractive, but also a place to relax, collaborate and refuel. When that happens, it lends to customer loyalty and that results in greater sales and a faster ROI on the investment made into the space.

What about the quality and durability of a micro market? Does that contribute to a competitive advantage?

We have recognized that from the beginning. People like Steve Closser from Translucent will tell you about the ease of installation of Fixturelite micro markets, the quality and durability of our markets, the ability to relocate them, and of course, the advanced retail design features, all of which contribute to a better experience for the end user. Quality is a choice that always results in a competitive advantage.

Is there any advice you would give to newer micro market operators?

Take advantage of the tools we provide. While we offer a great deal of design support for our operator clients, the design tool gives operators a head start on the competition and offers an impressive way to show the client that you are truly invested in providing an extraordinary workplace refreshment experience.

How else can operators set themselves apart in a positive way?

In a positive way – that is the key. I would urge operators to re-think the installation process. Operators should see the installation experience as a first impression. For instance, too many operators today think that shipping the equipment directly from the manufacturer to the customer’s location is a good idea, because it’s simply easier for the operator. Things can go downhill fast when the spotlight turns to what’s convenient for the operator, versus what’s best for the customer. A true retail operator should be receiving everything at their own warehouse and ensuring they are setting themselves up for success. They should be inspecting it, making sure they have all the parts, making sure that everything works before delivery to and installation at the customer location.

In other words, you want to show up as the expert?

Exactly. And one of the best resources available is a pro like Steve Closer from Translucent. They provide an optimal installation experience that originates from your own facility.

What could go wrong?

So many things can happen when you are shipping equipment and your own people are not there to carefully receive it. If there is a problem of any kind to deal with, a professional operator is better equipped to remedy the problem in their own facility, instead of working under the concerned and watchful eye of their client. This is a “best practice” issue that operators need to be mindful of. You would never ship OCS or vending equipment to a location – there are just too many things that can go wrong. Why would you treat a micro market differently?

Let’s talk about leveling the playing field at the 2022 NAMA Show in booth No. 406.

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About the Author

Industry consultant and contributor Bob Tullio is a content specialist who advises operators and suppliers in the convenience services industry. His YouTube channel His, b2b Perspective, is designed to “elevate your business in two minutes.” Visit to learn more about VMW ‘s contributing editor and his b2b services.

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