In the retail world, there's never a bad time to showcase products and draw the attention of consumers to merchandise. Whether a business is focused on sales to make room for new merchandise or highlight a hot, in-demand product, an effective display can draw in potential buyers and provide the visual and tactile stimulation that seals the deal. Effective arrangement of products, props and supporting items such as store display fixtures are crucial to such visual merchandising efforts. Businesses need to have both the right products to put on display and the underlying retail infrastructure to make a presentation attractive and engaging.
Ad Age pointed out the effectiveness of retail displays in the depths of the Great Recession, noting that even when spending power was at its weakest in the U.S., the retail display was a more effective driver of transactions than sales and special promotions. A good display not only encourages impulse purchases by reminding customers of an attractive price point or trendy accessory, it also pushes buyers that have been on the fence about getting a specific item in the right direction.
Mixing in discounts
Ad Age also highlighted the benefits of discounts and other special deals, noting that they're still valuable tools when used appropriately. For a college bookstore or other retailer that has a high rate of stock turnover, a sale display can make room for new, incoming items when the back store room is quickly growing full. Retailers shouldn't feel limited when it comes to putting together displays featuring their on-sale merchandise. In some instances, a sale display can lead the store, greeting patrons as they cross the threshold of the business. A display of newer, more expensive products can be featured closer to the center of a store. Alternatively, sale merchandise can be placed in the impulse-buy locations near the register, providing low-cost options in an area where customers are, at one point or another, made to wait.
Yahoo Small Business suggested retailers look at their displays like billboards, in that they don't just promote the items involved but the business as a whole as well. For this reason, stores need to incorporate some level of branding into their visual merchandising. This doesn't have to involve a large commitment of time and resources, but some simple props and color choices that evoke the store's identity along with the products on display.