NEW HYDE PARK, N.Y. -- Edwards Super Foods here has designed its new 70,000 square foot store as a series of solutions-selling centers, with the help of uniquely configured grocery aisles and arresting signage.
The new unit, which opened earlier this month, has names for most of the solution areas, which in Center Store include The Clean Zone, Paws Express, Snack Station, First Steps and For All Seasons. In addition, there is a Wellness Center, situated in front of the cash registers, which double-merchandises some Center Store products, like teas, soy and rice milks and nutrition bars. The frozen food department also has a breakfast center, although it is not given a specific name.
Denny Hopkins, spokesman for Giant Foods Stores, Carlisle, Penn., which operates Edwards stores on Long Island, told SN that the new unit in New Hyde Park has expanded the solution-selling concept for the chain and is the first to have several solution centers under one roof.
The new unit is actually a relocation of an old Edwards in the same shopping center, Hopkins said. The supermarket moved into the former site of a Bradlee's department store.
The Clean Zone is an entire aisle that includes laundry products as well as household cleaners and related items. The aisle is neatly categorized with the use of blue-and-white overhanging signs that read "The Clean Zone."
The signs, which jut out slightly into the aisle from the top shelf of the gondola, use a wheel-like motif. The several signs run up and down the gondola on either side of the aisle, and the name of the section is printed across the wheel.
Labeled categories in The Clean Zone are mops and brooms, gloves, vacuum bags, towels, sewing-dye, closet changers, candles, shoe care, laundry detergent, bleach, fabric softeners, Rubbermaid, dish detergent, cleaners/sponges, household cleaners, bathroom cleaners and air fresheners.
Unique about this aisle is how it cuts down on the confusion factor that typically faces a shopper in this part of the store. It is easy to find products by looking at the signage, and the subcategories can more readily be discerned and located.
Paws Express, the pet care center, is carved out of 52 feet, or three-quarters of an aisle, and signed with the same wheel-motif, but this time in green and brown, with decorative paw prints. The signs say "Paws Express," along with their respective categories, which are litter, cat toys, dry cat food, can cat food, dry dog food, can dog food, leashes, dog toys, rawhide, bones, bird, small animals and bowls.
In addition to the signs on the gondolas, there is a large, decorative department sign arched across the front of the aisle that repeats "Paws Express" and also says "Pet Care Center."
The pet center utilizes a wide aisle, so that an additional two gondolas can be fit in the middle, to create an aisle-within-an aisle.
This pet center includes a 32-foot section of bird food and bird seed, a 20-foot section of fish food and aquarium accoutrements and bedding for gerbils, hamsters, guinea pigs and rabbits.
There are also pet taxies, dog rugs, dog and cat beds, scratching posts and litter boxes merchandised on the top shelf above the dog and cat food.
The Snack Station is designated with a red, white and blue sign dominated by a pretzel image. The sign is arched across a very wide aisle. Again, the aisle accommodates an aisle-within-an-aisle, so that there are four gondolas in the Snack Station. Unlike the pet center, however, the Snack Station runs the length of the aisle, or about 75 feet.
Two gondolas are devoted to water, bottled tea, powdered drinks, soda, sparkling water, and mixers. The other two aisles stock coffee and tea, cocoa, popcorn and nuts, potato chips, pretzels and snacks.
The baby center uses a colorful "Baby" sign arched across a half aisle. Again, the baby aisle uses four gondolas in the half aisle, which this time is physically split. (The first part of the aisle is devoted to a body care center.)
The baby center, called "First Steps," again uses wheel-motif signs that jut out from the top shelf of the gondola to identify each section, such as formula, baby clothes, baby food, diapers, baby dinnerware, baby needs, feeding, toys, baby wipes, baby care, baby needs and books.
The solutions center "For All Seasons" also uses the back of an aisle that had been split in half. Here there are charcoal and barbecue accessories, lawn chairs, paper plates, party items, fans and T-shirts.
An extensive breakfast solutions center is set up in the middle of the dairy aisle and runs the length of half an aisle. Two double-sided coffin cases, each with two end caps, merchandise juice, egg substitutes, coffee lighteners, breakfast sausages and handheld sandwiches, pancakes and waffles, toaster muffins, pancake batter, French toast sticks, soy-based breakfast links and vegetarian burgers and breakfast pizza.