The Wall Street Journal is calling it the “next frontier in retail.” And the “it” is a training program run by Kimberly-Clark Corp. to help retailers understand how senior citizens navigate their shelves, displays and aisles — and how they sometimes struggle to do so.
Here’s the stat that is driving retailers to participate in this program:
The number of adults aged 65 and older will reach 71.5 million people by the year 2030. That will be twice the number of seniors that were residing in the U.S. back in 2000.
The first baby-boomers will reach age 65 two years from now. According to the WSJ article:
Current store layouts present challenges for elderly shoppers, experts say. Worsening eyesight makes finding items more frustrating, arthritis complicates browsing and reduced balance intensifies the strain of stooping or reaching for products.
Those sentences don’t exactly make me look ahead to my “golden years” with overwhelming enthusiasm. But, hey, it is what it is.
In any case, a number of retailers are putting their money where their mouth is. Example: Walgreen plans to revamp their store layouts to address these issues, and doing so will cost an estimated $30,000 to $50,000 per store.