Visual Merchandising has never been as important and as valuable, as it is right now, especially in the current climate – It is fundamental! Whether you are a small business or a large corporation it is time to step up on your “VM” – ing…
One of the most powerful, significant, aspects of visual merchandising, is to captivate, inspire, and encourage the customer to buy your product, increasing your sales, and improving profit margin and return on space. This process starts even before they have set foot in your store…
You will never get a second chance to make an exceptional first impression!
First impressions are formed within 10 seconds and a customer will vividly remember the worst impression, not the best…
The shop front reflects the identity of your store so it should be interesting, attractive and accessible with clear, consistent branding to entice the passer-by to enter. If the eyes are the windows to the soul. Then your display windows are just as revealing, they will unveil the personality, of your store…
Display windows are also another form of advertising and an excellent opportunity to attract even more customers. So, be creative, innovative and keep your displays simple, bold and uncluttered.
The visual merchandising inside the store should be determined according to two aspects: the image of the brand and the customer shopping experience.
Success factors of visual merchandising include the store’s appearance, signage, lighting, uniforms, menus, point of sale material, color, shapes, textures, packaging, ticketing, presentation and the “wow” factor each of these elements brings together in a retail setting. When these elements come together to showcase a brand, it enriches the customer experience, leading to a positive shopping experience and increased sales.
Once your potential customer is in the store you need to keep them there, for as long as possible, make them feel at ease, the longer they stay, the more they will spend.
Music, lighting, colours etc can all have a huge effect on the stress levels of the customer. How many times have you left a store because it was too bright, too dark or the music was too loud? Try appealing to all the senses sympathetically and be aware that the demographic of your target market will feel different in different atmospheres.
Impact of Visual Merchandising 83% sight, 11% hearing, 3.5% smell, 1.5% touch, 1% taste
- Sight: Use lighting to change the mood of the store and to highlight products on offer.
- Hearing: Music in stores has a huge effect on our stress levels. You may think a toy store would play children’s songs or nursery rhymes? In fact, the parents will feel a lot less stressed if the music is something softer, possibly classical or white noise.
- Touch: Allow clients to handle or test the products. This encourages conversation and rapport with your customers.
- Smell: Certain fragrances are calming such as Vanilla or Lavender or Citrus and Menthol to uplift. Try using seasonal fragrances to evoke a sense of magic, cinnamon around Christmas time.
- Taste: Not always possible but if you can offer free tasters they are an excellent way of selling more product.
Create a fun, exciting and inspiring shopping experience, stimulating all the senses that leave the customer wanting to return for more.
Ensure any special offers are clearly readable and not too big / small, bearing in mind the demographic of your target audience. If your window space is limited try using bright colours and lighting to draw the eye, maybe even motion. Change the displays frequently based on how often your customers visit the store. A fantastic but dated display could do more harm than good.
Turn every browser into a customer. Use every opportunity that you can buy a card for – think Mothers day, Fathers day, Easter, Halloween, Christmas etc…