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Summer 2006 Creating Displays that Pop

Solution: Risers, props and a visually arresting exotic theme

A lack of elevation in the original display makes merchandise appear flat and unexciting. Plus, the presentation has no theme or unifying element of visual interest to catch the shopper’s attention and invite them to buy.

After a visual merchandising makeover, the riser or elevation system not only creates visual interest but also allows the retailer to display more merchandise, which could mean additional sales. Props that fit the products’ theme also can be used as risers, in this case adding an element of excitement, romance and interest to the merchandise presentation. Wood and wicker Turkish-inspired baskets can be used to display smaller products inside the baskets and when turned upside down, act as risers that add height and interest.

A dark wicker tray table also adds needed height and shows off the products being sold. Wooden trunks not only add exotic appeal and height but also help “tell the story” of these imported goods. Scarves displayed in color groupings are contained inside baskets to keep them neat. A bust form displays belly-dance skirts and scarves, so customers can see the product in use. The blue glass mobiles are hung in clusters on the edges of the unit to attract the light and draw the eye upward. The result is a merchandise presentation that looks lush, full and exciting.

Solution: A unifying element, product groupings and a cohesive theme

imageAlthough they’re well intentioned, many retailers think they need to show every single item they stock in their window. But too many elements confuse the eye and fail to make a consistent, bold statement. The eye is naturally attracted to unity, balance and color. When confronted with too many elements in an unharmonious display, a shopper is more likely to look the other way.

The result? A lost opportunity to grab the attention of passing shoppers and entice them into the store. Rather than attracting shoppers, the strategy is counterproductive.

In the after photo, bold stylized graphics give the display much-needed focus, highlight the “Dollar Store” name and convey the idea that “shopping here is fun!” by adding brightness, color and excitement. The new approach also takes up the previously dead ceiling space, so now more of the display is being use to sell. Additional graphics, hung in groups of three down the center aisle of the store interior, serve to pull the shopper into and through the store space.

A farm table was moved from the back of the store to the window to create a shopable display. Flowers that were merchandised unappealingly are grouped by color in plastic hampers (also for sale) to improve their appearance and shopability. To complete the springtime-themed display, flowered plates, doormats and bags add the final touch. After the visual merchandising overhaul, the retailer reported that the new display immediately increased sales from shoppers who otherwise wouldn’t have entered the store.

Solution: Full product range displayed; color and movement add excitement

imageAfter opening day, the retailer added new products—video games and train sets—to the original assortment of remote-control cars, so the display needed a new approach. The presentation of the cars on top of the unit looked flat, and the video monitors had the appearance of being an afterthought.

The unit needed a new look that started with signage. The trade name R/C Grand Prix (previously minimized) was changed to Loco-Motion to reflect the expanded product mix, and a custom logo was created using dimensional foam, which now stands out center stage.

A new fixture was designed to enclose and highlight the video monitor, which adds height and provides additional shelf space underneath. Bright yellow accent blocks on the fixture frame tie together the look and help the product packaging “pop.” The color accents are repeated on case pads and posts to brighten the entire unit. Finally, a motion rope light tops the fixture to literally convey the “motion” theme. The business’s look is now unified, integrated, clean and fun.


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