Let’s face it – most people are visual people. After all, how many times have you bought the book that was facing out, the food item that was in the end-of-aisle display, the outfit that was on the mannequin versus hanging on the rack? As a store owner, you can tell your customers everything they should know to make the right purchase, but often, it’s what they see that tends to stay with them. Research supports this as well. A study by Ogilvy Action shows that of the US shoppers that bought from categories they didn’t intend to purchase, 24% were influenced by displays.
So, as the owner, what’s the trick to creating displays that will make your customers do a double-take – and want to buy that awesome new product line you just received yesterday? Here are a few helpful hints that are sure to make your displays pop and effectively showcase your products.
Create a Theme. When planning your displays, think about a theme. Sure, holidays come to mind but what could you create beyond holidays and seasons? One idea is to group items with like uses. Working with a beach theme? Include sunglasses, sun hats, beach towels and sunscreen in a group. Incorporate props to extend your theme. Gather small items in a child’s sand pail. Use a beach towel as a back drop. Place seashells in strategic points. You can also create themes around colors, types of items, or sizes. Get creative and don’t be afraid to have a little fun with it.
Tell a Story. Displays are not simply groupings of like products; often they tell a visual story, and people respond to this. Why? Because they evoke emotions or memory. For example, if you are showcasing baby products, bring out the nurturing love that a new mother might feel. For sporting goods, highlight the competitiveness of the game, the camaraderie of sport. The effect is that you will draw people in as you draw out their emotions. Use the products showcased in the display to bring people into the moment.
Showcase the Benefits. Displays can act as a silent salesperson, and any good salesperson knows that you always talk benefits – not features. What will the product do for the consumer? How will it help them? Why will this improve their well-being? How will it be fun? Let your display answer these questions for your customer, and you have a home run. For example, if displaying a camera – go ahead,and group it with a camera bag and tripod, but also show the prints in an album, a photobook or personalized calendar so that shoppers identify with how they could use the camera.
Stack Accordingly. In general, larger items and darker items look heavier. Place those items near the bottom of the display. Also, think in threes. Have some items of varying sizes? Place them in order of size – big, bigger, biggest. Place tall items in order of height . These visual rules create balance, symmetry and interest. They also allow for all items in the display to be seen.
Incorporate Signage. Sure, we all know that signage is important to the store, but in a display? Most definitely! It draws people’s eyes to a central point, it actually helps to describe and define the display and it gives customers a phrase or name to remember. In fact, research shows that displays with appropriate signage can increase sales up to 30%. However, signage should be succinct. Tell the consumers what the products are and the benefits they provide. Keep hand-written signs to a minimum (better yet, none at all) and use computer-generated signs or professional signage wherever possible.
Keep It Fresh. Shopping is not just a transaction anymore, but a whole experience. Shoppers need engagement—yes, almost entertainment — while shopping. Be sure to change up your displays regularly to keep your customers involved. Store windows should be changed every two weeks and other displays weekly.
Know What Works. It’s hard to know what works if you’re changing your displays every week. It is critical that you track them so you know what did well, what should be changed and possibly scrapped altogether. Record your displays by using a digital camera and then track respective sales accordingly. If it doesn’t work, don’t be afraid to change it but make sure you’ve got the data and results to back up your decision.
Incorporating these few, simple ideas into your displays will help you to create dynamic displays to attract customers.
— The Baby Pibu™ Team
Visual Merchandising and Floor Displays – Staples.com
Top 12 Visual Merchandising Ideas – Rick Segal
Create Retail Displays that Attract Customers – Melanie McIntosh
5 Tips for Great Retail Displays – Rick Segal
Retail Display 101: Tips for Effective Point of Purchase Displays – Explore B2B