GO Outdoors: Where

Leisure Meets Retail

Winners of Retail Gazette’s 2023 Game Changing Store of the Year award recognising stores that have raised the bar in terms of customer experience and sales performance!

Location: UK

GO Outdoors commissioned Briggs Hillier to design a disruptive flagship store concept to help the brand achieve its mission to firmly establish itself as the nation’s favourite.


The Brief

We were briefed to devise and design updates to the layout, display areas, exterior, entrance area, hero features and focal points, navigational signage, graphics and materials used in GO Outdoors’ stores, with a focus on the strategic and design direction of specialist category areas that would house the retailer’s partner brands and offer experiential journeys that bring products to life.

Furthermore, the retailer was keen to explore how meaningful community moments could be delivered throughout the customer journey. Among others, we proposed an omnichannel experience that integrates social features from the retailer’s online world into the store, as well as implementing digital elements for the dynamic display of media and to encourage product exploration. We also sought to embellish the GO Outdoors’ environment with hospitality experiences to transform the store from a traditional retail format to a best-in-class retail destination.



With experience and consultation at the core of this flagship concept, each featured activity zone is underpinned by a hub concept that encourages product browsing, trialling and discovery. Alongside this core design strategy is a creative that seamlessly blends GO Outdoors’ branding with partner brands, elevates the activity zones through unique colour and material palettes, and includes themed architectural elements that characterize the zones for optimal immersion.

We designed a monumental concept that would showcase the retailer’s specialist inventory of outdoor apparel, footwear and equipment, whilst existing as a destination that offers an alluring fusion of retail and leisure for outdoor enthusiasts.

Starting with the store exterior, we envisioned a functional space offering bike parking in a natural outdoor setting, achieved through landscaping with rock assortments and small stretches of lawn. Moving into the interior, an entrance tunnel is formed from timber arches and sky-inspired lightboxes highlighting partner brands and offering a snapshot of what to expect instore.


The Fishing Hub

GO Outdoors stock a vast range of angling equipment to cater for the many forms of fishing and its large community. Spotlighting GO Outdoors-owned fishing brand, Fishing Republic, the Fishing Hub features a Reel Bar, where a selection of reels are displayed on rod bars so anglers can get a feel for the product; a Seasonal Bait display, complete with a refrigeration unit for the stock of live bait; an impressive rod display that sits in front of a large landscape graphic, as well as a roller drawer display system holding a full range of rod types for coarse, sea, fly and predator fishing; and Pole Alley, a landscape-immersive environment that allows for the testing and trialling of poles up to 13 meters.

A combination of greenwashed panels, wood framing, and landscape graphics create an environment resembling a waterside haven for anglers, while the inclusion of crab net light shades complement the design scheme and differentiate the fishing zone from other activity zones in the GO Outdoors’ store.


The Cycling Hub

One of the larger zones of GO Outdoors’ flagship store design concept is the cycling zone. Primarily supporting partner brand, Bike 365, the cycle category provides services and equipment for the everyday cyclist with a select few stores featuring Wheelbase offering a higher-end selection for the hobbyist and enthusiast.

The cycling zone of each features a largely black backdrop to allow the bikes and bike accessories to especially pop, with accents of either orange or green used in reference to the featured partner brand. A light wood canopy that spotlights the hub introduces creative architecture through the insertion of bike spokes to the framework, strengthening the category’s identity and bringing a warmth to the space.


This multi-functional cycling hub is characterised by an assortment of sub-category touchpoint options, from a Nutrition Bar stocking popular sports’ bars and gels, and a service & repair shop offering bike servicing and expert help, to a fitting & testing component complete with a self-serve Bike Selector tool and simulation area equipped with turbo-trainers for a more authentic trial ride. Further facets of the cycling department include well-considered kids’ and adults’ bike displays featuring bike size guides and information graphics, and a “Wearables” area displaying a vast range of specialist cycling equipment and apparel.



We incorporated a fitting room into the design of the Trouser Selector bay that houses an extensive outdoor trousers’ range. A tunnel that sits at the centre of the trouser bay provides the customer with a 4D experience via the inclusion of a screen that cycles through wind, rain and sun scenes and a fan that blows out hot and cold air. The VM is further enhanced through the inclusion of lifestyle graphics, product information cards, and a “How To” guide enabling self-service.

Further apparel bays include those displaying clothes from sports’ performance and lifestyle brands, adidas Terrex and The North Face. Brand partner bays are defined by disparate fixture toppers of varying textures, and the Trouser Selector bay via a mountainscape-inspired canopy header.



From walking boots to wellies, GO Outdoors caters for an assortment of footwear needs. Display design and layout was determined by a categorisation strategy that differentiates product first by gender and then by activity and product type. To achieve efficiency of space, we laid out the midfloor display systems in a circular configuration in front of the large footwear wall. A terrain testing tunnel runs through the centre, where graphic scenes guide the customer over different ground traverses. The design details complete the footwear zone, from seating depicting sliced and stacked tree trunk timber to a department-defining raft drawing straight over the terrain testing zone.


Climbing, Camping, Luggage and Kids

Further zones include those dedicated to climbing, camping and luggage, for all of which we prioritised product display, education and discovery, with consideration to VM principles and how we could create displays that are both functional and attractive through product repetition and colour.



GO Social & GO Play

The GO Social café and events hub is designed to be flexible in its layout with almost all furniture and fittings that make up the space being free-moving for the ability to transform the café environment into an events’ space. A mountainscape-inspired canopy, a design element seen elsewhere in the store, creates a focal-point and an intuitive location for product demos and performances to take place.

We also considered the experience of children and their parents when visiting the store, from designing product displays that would prove compelling to both parties to incorporating a play area into the designs as a solution to some of the challenges that parents typically face when shopping with children.


Lastly, we designed a spacious till area, complete with recycling and hydration stations for a pleasant end-of-journey experience.



We provided an extensive toolkit of flexible design concepts that can be easily applied to new and existing GO Outdoors’ stores. with plans to update the stores department-by-department for limited disruption to operating hours, the retailer can easily draw upon inspiration and guidance from the toolkit’s department-focused designs for gradual implementation of the new concept.


Get in touch to discover how we can help you with your brand’s store of the future concept.



Lucy Mister

3rd August 2023