Using Props, Signage & Fixtures Effectively In Apparel Stores
The power of visual merchandising in enhancing the brand awareness is a benefit that no one undermines nowadays. It is the best strategy that can be used to promote your products, maybe better that an actual advertising would do. People generally enjoy most the way in which a certain product sells itself, rather than all that information that comes along it, like product descriptions for example. These are valuable right before the customer decides upon that item, sees it and thinks of purchasing.
But before this happens, what is that makes a product visible, what is that attracts customers more than the products and their desire, need for things do? These are questions that can only be solved in the process of applying the principles of visual merchandising, principles that are connected to the way in which we create imagery in our store and for our products, strategies that have as a result the increase of sales, given by the way in which we succeeded in attracting our customers.
We need to talk now about some things that can help us built a powerful impact, an appealing imagery. We need to know that through imagination and creativity great things can be achieved. By doing this, we need to be aware of certain more “technical” things that are used to build up successful displays. We’ve chosen props, signage and fixtures as means to aid imagination come forth.
Using Display Props Effectively
Props are defined as something that is used with a product in a display that clarifies the function of the merchandise is being sold or the story behind it. Props are very important in the making of a display, and also in the process of creating imagery. They tell a story not only about the product, but also about the brand’s concept or the store’s, the merchandise’s visibility on the market and so on. The aim of props is, of course, that of highlighting salable items in order to increase profit. Visibility is provided for the original theme merchandise, in addition to the prop merchandise.
When you decide to use salable merchandise as a prop, make sure it is appropriate for the theme of the display or its general idea you want it to be based on. Also, you need to ensure a sufficient quantity of props of this type to meet an increase in demand arising from the display. As a prop, you can also make use of some natural or ordinary objects, such as, rustic antiques found in someone’s attic.
Using Fixtures Effectively
Fixtures come in this process of creating displays as an original way to expose items. There is a variety of ways to use fixtures, the best ones are: gondolas (a four-sided capacity fixture that can contain shelves and rods), tables, cubes, mannequins, waterfalls, round racks, end caps, two-way fixtures / four-way-fixtures.
A fixture shouldn’t be used only to maximize the value of the merchandise, but it should also have an impact on the atmosphere created in the store. Each fixture should act as a silent salesperson, putting into display everything that a product has to offer.
In a book called Visual Merchandising. A Guide for Small Retailers, printed at Iowa State University, the author has compiled some useful pieces of advice in order for you to be able to use fixtures in the best way possible. Here are some:
1. When placing racks, progress from small (sized or capacity) fixtures at aisles to large fixtures near the back walls. When working with hard goods, place cubes in the front with gondolas to the rear of the department or store.
2. Higher-priced stores require fewer fixtures because there is less merchandise. Use primarily T-stands and four-ways to create an illusion of space and selective goods. This feeling is necessary to sell higher-priced goods.
3. Create exciting displays of mass merchandise by using quantity and color. Display merchandise in quantity on quads, Bloomingdales and T-stands; use cubes for folded goods.
4. Fixtures that work well for sale items include tub tables, round racks and rectangular racks.
Using Signage Effectively
Signage is an important part of the interior displays and point-of-purchase promotion. Stores use signage in order to communicate a message that is connected to sales, especially when they don’t have so many people inside the store all the time. The main reason for the choice of a signage is that it is an effective sign, and when it is placed properly, acts as a salesperson without even bothering to hire someone for that specific task.
Signage, when properly placed, it can draw the customer’s attention to the products, but it is only effective when used for a short period of time. If you think it is better to use it more often, be sure that you deliver a new message each time, otherwise customers won’t even bother to look at it.
- George Blitzer