Person holding a wooden drawer with five pairs of black-rimmed glasses inside

What kind of in-store experience does it take to fight online upstarts?

The retail store, reimagined as an elevated service experience.

The line between eyecare and eyewear was getting in the way of a great customer experience. So we decided to get rid of it.

  • Luxottica is one of the world’s leading eyewear brands, but that didn’t make it immune to competition from cheap online alternatives. Faced with declining market share, they needed to grow foot traffic, sales, and brand loyalty. But first they needed to understand what a “uniquely Luxottica retail experience” was…and what it could be.

  • Ziba worked with Luxottica’s brand team to clarify their unique brand promise, which informed a complete new retail experience strategy. Physical stores became ‘service centers’, and a dizzying 18-stage customer journey was simplified to just three service touchpoints. We took cues from theater and educational theory, to guide customers through the streamlined experience. Then we prototyped and refined it at full scale, until it was intuitive and satisfying in a way no online retailer could match. Environmental and communication design—from story and imagery to digital touchpoints—reinforced the brand’s superior quality, value, and fashion.

  • The pilot OPSM ‘service center’ launched in central Sydney in 2015, and within a year had shown sales growth of 6.8%—despite growing competition from online upstarts. The concept has gone on to inform redesigns in nearly 80 stores throughout Australia.

  • Group of workers inside of a modern retail eyewear store
  • Wooden wall with a heart and an illustrated eye carved into it, next to a wooden desk with four white chairs and a table divider that reads “Get Started”
  • Brightly lit retail eyewear store with walls of glasses and service kiosks

    Brightly lit retail eyewear store with walls of glasses and service kiosks
Wooden desk with three tablet devices set up on two sides for customers to use in-store

At that time digital commerce was really nascent, especially in Australia. We predicted the impact e-comm would have on retail and while our retailers were focused on an assortment arms war we reimagined the role of the store as a 'service center'. We reimagined the OPSM store from the ground up to amplifying engagement, unleashing expertise of team members and celebrating an elevated service experience. As covid accelerates adoption of e-commerce, the role of the store will need to be reconsidered in its entirety. And who knows, when the dust settles and people venture outside again, maybe that role will be the service center!


Sales growth in the first year

OPSM (Optical Prescription Spectacle Makers) is an Australian subsidiary of Luxottica, the world’s largest eyewear company.

  • CX Strategy

  • Trend Insights

  • User Insights

  • Communication Design

  • Digital Design

  • Environmental Design

  • Service Design

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