IKEA In-Store Wayfinding Strategy Explained - IKEA Wayfaring Map Main

IKEA In-Store Wayfinding Strategy Explained

Finally IKEA In-Store Wayfinding Strategy Explained. FixturesCloseUp long ago reported on the physical signing of IKEA layouts and the shopper journey through the store. See the original reporting at ” IKEA In-Store Wayfaring Map Branded Spaces recently analyzed the IKEA shopper journey strategy in an outreach in far more detail and has given permission for FixturesCloseUp to reproduce their thoughts here. Enjoy the more detailed perspective and reach out to Branded Spaces to pursue. 

Also see all FixturesCloseUp reporting on IKEA at
INDEX: IKEA Retail Fixtures.

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The Secret To Ikea’s Journey Style Wayfinding Signage

If you’ve ever shopped at an Ikea store you’ve probably experienced the unique roundabout route the pathway and wayfinding signage forces you to travel. They call the plan “the long, natural way”, which if you’ve never experienced it, Ikea designs it in a one-way only layout where signs direct the way from one department to the next. The layout takes customers counter clockwise through the store displays and eventually leads them into the store’s warehouse area. The customer can now buy and take the product home. It’s designed to encourage the customer to see the entire store and it’s products. This is a stark difference when compared to a traditional retail store which allows a customer to go directly to the department of their choice without traveling through other parts of the store. An Ikea store is a brilliant example of an interior journey style wayfinding sign schematic.

Reasons and Ideas- The purposefully designed passageway, signage and cohesive brand experience allows for ease of directional understanding and leads the viewer in the desired path. Much like a museum, when you enter you experience wayfinding signage which takes you through all of the exhibits and out through the gift shop. When Ikea conceived their wayfinding sign schematic they followed the same 4 steps we do with our projects.

1. Create a treasure map style plan. This is a simple directional map with one path and  “stops”, which are key places or points you prefer the viewer stop at along their journey.

2. Differentiate your “stops” with design. Defining the “stops” will create a visual separation for your viewer allowing them to understand what they should be experiencing along the path.

3. The destination should be the goal or conclusion to the journey. Wherever the viewer ends up should be a profitable or impressionable space. Ikea and museums have their point of purchase at the end for instance.

4. Prepare signage concepts and incorporate your brand into the journey. Keep it simple with brand colors, but be sure to keep the American Disabilities Act standards in mind when creating.

Best Practice Tips – Journey wayfinding planning is critical to the customer experience and what your desired results are for your space. In Ikea’s model they follow a similar plan as museums and attractions. They lead the viewer through the space so that they experience every thing to offer without skipping anything. As you come to the end of the wayfinding journey they exit the viewer through a revenue gateway. In a sense the wayfinding acts as a customer service representative personally walking the shopper around the store.

Branded Spaces LogoAnalysis and commentary courtesy of Branded Spaces.

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EDITORS NOTE: No remuneration is involved in creation of FixturesCloseUp posts. The site does not publish Product or Press Releases directly, but if you have an unusual fixture use as seen in retail, insightful fixture white paper, commentary on the shopper journey, or even in-store branding approach, my 2,500,000 lifetime page view site and readers might be a good venue for you. Fire off an email to me. I am happy to provide my readers with new ideas and fresh choices if they meet FixturesCloseUp criteria.


For all Store Navigation And Store Directionals resources…

Amenities: Store Navigation And Store Directionals Pinterest Board
Amenities: Store Navigation And Store Directionals Index Page

For Waiting Line and Cashwrap Queue resources see…

Waiting Line Pinterest Board
Waiting Line Index Page

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Also See Down Arrow

Explore IKEA shopper journey strategies via…

” This Way to IKEA
IKEA® In-Store Wayfaring
” IKEA In-Store Wayfinding Strategy Explained

Follow IKEA Retail Fixtures by Title at

” Little Adventurers Beware IKEA Warning Sign
” Beware Sleeping Dragon IKEA Danger Sign
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IKEA Slotwall on a Slant
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IKEA Bag Cart for Shopping
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IKEA Caster Mobile Bag Return
IKEA Clothes-Pinned Pillows
IKEA Ceiling-Hung Glassware
Cowhide Merchandising at IKEA
IKEA Floor-Stand Linen Tower
IKEA Mattress Protector Floor Bin
IKEA Extended-Top Label Strip
IKEA Caster Mobile Bag Return
IKEA Ceiling-Mount Literature Rack
IKEA Overhead Pillow Display
Longitude and Latitude Pillows at IKEA
IKEA In-Store Likes and Dislikes
IKEA Sinks Scaled to VIP User
IKEA Defines Shoe Storage Need
Mixed Trash Looking Good at IKEA
IKEA Do-It-Yourself Pick Card
Shopping Cart Flags at IKEA
IKEA Pocket Store Rack Design
IKEA Hanger Fashion Colors

For all IKEA Retail Fixtures research aids see…

IKEA Retail Fixtures Pinterest Board “ Visual Summary
IKEA Retail Fixtures Index Page ” for all resources.

IKEA Fixtures Pinterest Board for FixturesCloseUp

Also see IKEA Tour, Elizabeth NJ resources…

“ IKEA Tour, Elizabeth NJ Pinterest Board “ (Pending)
IKEA Tour, Elizabeth NJ Index Page

For all Store Navigation And Store Directionals resources…

Amenities: Store Navigation And Store Directionals Pinterest Board
Amenities: Store Navigation And Store Directionals Index Page

Navigation IN-Store Fixtures Close Up Pinterest Board

For all  Waiting Line resources see…

Waiting Line Pinterest Board
Waiting Line Index Page

Updated June 2021

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