The length of the route through all the galleries of the Afimall Moscow shopping center is 3.5 kilometers, and this journey will take at least an hour. And to look into all 400 shops and 50 restaurants and cafes, there will not be enough working day. According to market research, Afimoll visitors spend on average more than three hours here and go to four to five stores. Life around walked around the shopping center, looked into the rooms hidden from visitors, and found out how the shopping center was arranged.
Who comes to the mall
In the design of the central core of the Moscow-City complex, a shopping and entertainment complex was originally laid down. Its construction began in 2006 and was completed five years later.
Every day, 75 thousand people visit the shopping center, more than half of which come here by metro. Afimall also acts as a connecting link between the metro and the towers: the exits from Vystavochnaya and Business Center stations are located on its lower floors, and workers can get to the office from the metro without walking along the street.
Due to the specific location of Afimoll, the audience is very different from other shopping centers. These are men and women 20-39 years old - middle managers, specialists and employees. About a third of visitors on weekdays are employees of office towers; on weekends they return with their children.
The shopping center is open from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. (an hour longer on Friday and Saturday), but some restaurants, a cinema and an entertainment complex close later. It is not profitable for large shopping centers to work around the clock: by the evening visitors get tired, and sales in the last hours are reduced.
What locations are the most popular
The mall has a management company and tenants. The management company employs about 60 people. These are legal, financial and operational departments, marketing departments, attracting tenants and relationships with them. The management company ensures the operation of the shopping center as a whole - cleaning, security and serviceability of all systems. She also collects a pool of tenants and guarantees consumer traffic. Tenants pay for the area and undertake to comply with the rules of the shopping center.
Anchor tenants are large stores that provide traffic not only to themselves, but also to their neighbors. Lease terms for "anchor" stores are more attractive.
But Afimall provides space for both popular brands and those just entering the market. Tenants have requirements for location, floor and the nearest neighbors - brokers work with requests. The most popular locations are points around the fountain. “Everyone wants to stay here, so we even introduced a waiting list. Not only luxury brands, but also beginner brands can apply for such places. Moreover, a successful location is still not a guarantee of good sales. We have a very saturated market, and if you appearing as another, even interesting, brand of women's clothing, that is, the risk of drowning in the stream. Despite very good traffic, it is difficult to attract attention if you do not unwind yourself additionally, "says Eva Snegovskaya, director of marketing at Afimolla. Other popular places are at the exits from the subway. Many tenants are looking at points with a prospect for the future: now their location is not very profitable, but with the advent of a new station of the Third interchange circuit, traffic will increase dramatically. On average, a contract is concluded for three years, and coordination of all conditions takes from a month to a year. Tenants pay a fixed amount and a percentage of the turnover to the mall. The maximum rental rate is 2.5 times higher than average.
A separate format is corners. Their area is the smallest, and the rent is the highest. But corners have advantages over stores because they stand in the way of potential buyers. The cost of the corner, depending on the area and location, is 250-500 thousand rubles per month.
“The luxury segment was hardly affected by the crisis,” says Snegovskaya. “At the same time, the audience of other segments went down a notch: if a person used to buy clothes at Massimo Dutti, now he visits Zara more often. If he visited Zara before, he is now interested in Pull & Bear. People are less likely to shop. Less people are hunting for new collections, preferring to shop at sales. "
How shops are side by side
The brands that are presented in the shopping center can be divided into price categories. There are six of them in the fashion retail: budget, lower, middle, middle +, premium and luxury. To determine which category a store belongs to, you need to look at the cost of classic women's trousers: in the lower segment they will cost about a thousand rubles, and in stores of the “luxury” category - 30 thousand and above. For example, Mango or Topshop stores belong to the middle segment.
There are no strict rules for zoning stores of different price segments. But historically, there was a mass market on the ground floor, shops of youth brands - Bershka, Stradivarius, New Yorker and others. At the same time, a large “TSUM-Discount” adjoins them, the items in which are some of the most expensive in the shopping center. It is located at the intersection of all office routes and steadily attracts traffic. The proximity of stores with different prices can play into the hands: if you can’t find anything affordable in an expensive store, the buyer will take his soul to the next with more affordable prices.
On the second floor there are brands from the middle segment - here you can see both Zara and Massimo Dutti. The third floor is positioned as an upscale gallery, so most of the stores are expensive brands (Armani Exchange, Soho, Marco Polo). Next to the food court, on the fourth floor there are toy and children's clothing stores, an entertainment center and a petting zoo. On the fifth floor there are restaurants and a cinema, and the sixth opens for concerts, exhibitions and other events.
Shops are zoned not only by price segment, but also by profile: sports shops, children's goods and men's clothing are usually concentrated in certain places. Shops of the same profile, located next to each other, attract additional traffic for each other and slow down the buyer, who, leaving one store, is likely to go into the second.
The new product is delivered to stores through secure loading areas, where vans drop in almost non-stop. Delivery in a number of stores happens two to three times a week, for others (for example, H&M) new goods are brought in every day.
The management company can initiate discounts in stores - for example, like last "Black Friday". It is more difficult to negotiate with large brands, and newcomers sometimes go to tricks in order not to give real discounts. Especially for this, during such sales, mystery shoppers go to check the availability and size of discounts.
Afimall has a food court and a restaurant courtyard with establishments of Vietnamese, Spanish, Mexican and other cuisines. “Actually, the cost of a lunch in fast food is equivalent to a lunch in a good restaurant, but everyone is accustomed to consider that the food court belongs to the“ economy ”category, and the food court is“ average + ”,” says Eva Snegovskaya.
The shopping center must ensure that the establishments do not eat each other. Therefore, new places should not duplicate the formats of existing tenants. The exception is only popular cuisine - for example, Central Asian.
Mostly products are delivered between seven and nine in the morning before the opening of the shopping and entertainment center, but some cafes and restaurants accept deliveries even at night. Products are delivered through special secure gateways and then lifted to the desired floor by freight elevators.
Meat & Fish Restaurant is located in the mall since opening. The main audience here is employees of office centers who come for lunch or hold business meetings. “The restaurant is open from ten in the morning until midnight, but already from eight in the morning we begin to prepare business lunches,” says chef Grigory Sahakyan. Meat & Fish sells 200-250 lunches daily. Due to the proximity to the offices in the Afimolla restaurants, there are queues for lunch, although usually weekdays are not the hottest for shopping centers.
How space is designed
At first, the skating rink was supposed to be in the center of the multi-storey atrium, but later it was decided that its construction and maintenance were not economically justified. In its place they put a fountain - now it is the main attraction of the shopping center.
The design of the shopping center should stimulate buying activity. Lighting and colors are important: yellow, orange, red colors increase appetite, beige shades inspire confidence. In this matter, it is important to maintain balance and not to turn shopping galleries into a semblance of a sea of light, in which the attention of visitors is scattered, they say in Afimall. The number of advertising spots and light panels is limited so as not to distract from store windows.
Showcases are designed by retailers themselves in accordance with their concept and brand book; The general desire of the management company is brightness and attractiveness. Sketches are sent for approval to the marketing department, and in 99% of cases they are immediately approved. “I only remember two cases where we did not agree on a window dressing. For the first time it was a provocative slogan about sanctions, and in the second case, a stylish but too candid photo shoot was used in advertising underwear,” Snegovskaya says.
Each outlet works independently to create a comfortable atmosphere, using design elements, light, aroma marketing. For example, Zara Home has a corporate fragrance that is distributed in all stores in the chain. Shops are not allowed to disturb neighbors with music, distribute promotional materials without approval, and display advertising structures outside the storefront.
Most retailers make their own selection of music that is broadcasted internally. On the Afimolla radio professional selections sound that vary depending on the time of day, days of the week and season. In total, the music library has tens of thousands of songs. In the shopping center, they try not to repeat tracks often (there is only one recognizable composition): they quickly become boring to regular visitors and torment store employees.
Delivery of equipment and re-registration of shop windows are at night from 23 hours to eight in the morning. At night, all the noisy work associated with the arrangement of new retail space is also carried out. Cleaning in the shopping center takes place around the clock, and with the onset of night time, special equipment leaves that cannot be used during the day.
In the interior of Afimolla there are both permanent decorations (hanging luminous balls) and seasonal ones - for example, New Year's garlands, huge luminous snowflakes and a tall Christmas tree. The design concept is developed by the management company, then holds a tender and selects the contractor. By the upcoming New Year holidays, the dome will be illuminated at Afimall.
The Afimolla glass dome with an area of 10 thousand square meters is covered with seven layers of glass; twice a year, industrial climbers wash it. The marble floors of the mall also require specific cleaning. Most often, the facades in shopping centers are deaf (this is done so that things do not fade in the sun, and buyers do not feel the passage of time). Afimall is no exception, but its facades are covered with glass panels that create the illusion of transparency.
The security center of the shopping center has about a hundred employees. On the territory of the shopping center, about a thousand cameras are installed, the signal from which goes to the round-the-clock control room. Arched metal detectors are installed at all entrances, which record the amount of metal being carried. If green lights up on the scale of the detector, then there is no metal; several divisions of the scale, lit up in red, indicate that a person may have keys, a phone or a lighter in his pocket. If there are more red divisions, then the amount of metal is equivalent to the gun, and then the visitor can be inspected using a hand-held metal detector or asked to show the contents of the bag.
Afimall is not allowed on roller skates, and scooters and skateboards will be asked to be put on the cover. “There is a lot of glass in the spaces of the atriums, and if someone does not brake on time, then there may be unpleasant consequences. Many are upset, but this is for their own safety,” they say in Afimall.
The security of the shopping center is responsible for general security, some stores have their own security guards, and the security service cooperates with them. “We are not responsible for shoplifting, but if the security guard reports that a man with a beard in green pants just stole a jacket, we can transfer information to our posts and try to catch a thief. At best, there are ten minutes,” They say in the control room.
Guards in civilian clothes work on the territory of the shopping center. The unit also has a quick response team. These are specially equipped employees, in the arsenal of which are special means in case of emergency.
How visitors are attracted
About 50 thousand customers use the Afimoll mobile application. Audience loyalty is increased with the help of the bonus program: store visitors upload checks to the application, and in return receive free services. Once a quarter, car and real estate drawings are held among buyers. “Each time it seems that this is a special PR story. Once a man came here from some city for an interview. On the same day he received an offer and won the house,” says Eva. Money for large prizes is allocated from the advertising budget, or gifts are provided by companies in exchange for advertising.
In some shopping centers you can find navigation that leads the visitor to the desired store the longest way. This increases the time spent in the shopping center, but they say in Afimall that they do not resort to it. Through the application, you can quickly build a route to the desired store, as well as remember and find the place of your car in the parking lot.
The cost of developing a mobile application in the management company is not called. But in addition to helping buyers, it is also an analytical tool. “Our application is connected to the cash desks of many stores, and if I want, I can see what purchases are made from 10:00 to 12:00, what women are interested in at the shopping center and what men buy on the eve of the holidays,” says Snegovskaya. For example, it can be seen that a surge in consumer activity falls on the 5th and 20th day of each month - the days when people get paid. Visitor requests are also monitored at the information desk. If many people ask about the same store or restaurant that is not in the mall, this is a signal for brokers to start negotiations.