Karl Mckeever a UK based renowned international retail consultant and instore change management specialist once quoted “Visual merchandising (VM) is an indispensable retail discipline, consisting of a series of practical selling tools that are used to influence what and how many customers buy.”
Customer is the heart of any business and for a business to be successful, the customer needs to be engaged to the business idea. The success of a business is measured by the customer base it wins over a period. Visual Merchandising is a technique to win the customer.
Visual merchandising is presenting products in a way that makes them visually appealing and desirable. Stuff like themed gated displays, glass stockade on entry walls of a shop, the arrangement of FMCG products on a shelf, ambient light flash on products in display, attractive displays, and branded props are all examples of visual merchandising.
Visual Merchandising in retail can be as natural as stacking packets of biscuits into a pyramid or as fancy as recreating a theme from a movie into the branding of a detergent. Visual merchandising in retail stores is all about using artistic product displays to attract, engage, and delight the customers.
How does Visual Merchandising help the business:
Visual Merchandising increases the number of customers who notice and engage with your products, thus increasing the customer base of a business. It creates a first impression on customers which is irreplaceable and allows retention of the customer by forcing them to visit you again.
Not only does it help in customer retention and engagement but it also helps in increasing sales as proper alignment of products, clear pricing, and displays improve the overall experience of the customer and hence can help in increasing sales.
Visual merchandising also serves in increasing the value of a product for a business. Even for a product that is difficult to sell proper visual merchandising techniques can help a business sell them with relative ease without reducing the price.
There is a wide range of Visual Merchandising techniques that are used by the business leaders & it is very important for a business to shortlist a few out of them and use them in retail stores.
A few techniques which have been most significant in boosting sales across businesses are listed below.
9 Visual Merchandising techniques to boost sales in retail stores:
- Start focusing on themed displays:
The very first stage is the attract stage where the customer comes across a variety of solutions to its problems. The customer starts a comparison between different product solutions that can solve the problem. Proper usage of themed displays in visual merchandising keeping the target customers in mind gives an edge to the business and ends up landing potential customers for the business.
- Improve your placement of products:
Using different placements of products in visual merchandising like placing the products vertically and horizontally is visually very aesthetic for a customer. Proper vertical placement can not only catch the eye of the customer but also be visually very appealing. It enhances business visibility. Similarly, the horizontal alignment of profitable products with good margins can also lead to increased revenues for your business.
- Create Merchandising Hierarchy:
It refers to the way businesses organize and display their merchandise. The hierarchy levels further split similar types of merchandise into smaller ones. Businesses while developing a hierarchy point in a retail store should organize products so that they are separate from others. The goal of a hierarchy point in merchandising is to organize your merchandise so that your customers can quickly find what they are looking for. Companies can thus their visibility in a retail store through proper placement of their products.
- Use Digital Displays, Signage, and Analyze Their Impact:
While digital displays and signage grab attention for the companies in the retail store it gives dynamic announcements and updates making your brand stand out from others. It also leads to on spot buyings, besides these are also cost-effective. Although it increases sales, a business needs to analyze the sales through different displays and to understand what works best for the business. Target customers give a big boost to the presence of your business in retail stores.
- Use Relevant Props:
Just like assists help in scoring goals in football, props help in assisting sales in a business. Using props is the icing on the cake for boosting the sales of business in a retail store. An example of this could be as simple as a visi-cooler on a local store having a brand image attached to it. Props thus can be a great finishing agent to give a final push for the sales in a retail store.
- Customize The Shelves:
A newness in display techniques excites the customers. Customizing the shelves according to your business theme is an innovative way to attract customers and increase sales. A personal touch of the brand on shelves is a new technique and can lighten up the brand visibility of a business. Using different shelves associated with the theme of the business can surely boost the sales of your company in the retail store.
- Deploy Product Promoters:
Deploying Product Promoter at the POS can not only help increase your sales but it also helps you avoid stock-outs and ensure compliance with visual merchandising campaigns and get competitor insights.
BeatRoute is an easy-to-use mobile app that helps maximize ROI through your promoters. The app helps you to solve these problems down to the slightest of details. It is backed up with presence & grooming assurance, standardized communication with consumers and promises robust sales process execution at every store.
- Set Attractive Campaigns:
Campaigns that set your business apart from the rest are something a businesses focus a lot on. A proper visual merchandising with the use of campaign movement brings in new customers on board and thus increases the sales of your business. Exciting campaign with attractive slogans and beautiful usage of displays and signages can rapidly scale up your business.
This visual merchandising strategy must be closely followed by both the field reps and the business. Therefore, it becomes very important for businesses to audit merchandising campaigns for the smooth functioning of the same.
- [BONUS POINT] Audit Stores For Merchandising Compliance With BeatRoute:
Leading companies are leveraging a combination of an intuitive and smart visual merchandising retail audit app with backend AI-assisted automated auditing. This is challenging the old norm of sending a human being exclusively for visual merchandising audits. It further allows them to extend this operation from a few key stores to a much larger landscape.
BeatRoute’s AI-assisted Visual Merchandising functionality helps in creating relevant campaigns for your target audience. It not only helps in capturing data-driven feedback with the help of a customized form but also allows automatic photo auditing through AI-powered assistance for visual merchandising and display.
BeatRoute’s Visual Merchandising Auditor App also gives sales managers an opportunity for real-time monitoring of Visual Merchandising which takes place at the store and lets them correct it, which in turn improves the quality of execution of Visual Merchandising campaign.
A combination of an easy-to-use and robust mobile app to collect Visual Merchandising evidence from the point-of-sales and AI-Assisted grading of images means ensuring successful returns from visual merchandising programs at a large scale.
A successful business demands a high conversion of its prospects into actual customers, and Visual Merchandising is a great tool to achieve that, but as a Business leader it is equally important to have thorough auditing of the Visual Merchandising strategy. BeatRoute’s Visual Merchandising Auditor App is one such solution for auditing your Visual Merchandising strategy.
Frequently Asked Questions:
1. What is Visual merchandising?
Visual merchandising is the practice within the retail industry of optimizing the presentation of products and services to better highlight their features and benefits to attract, engage, and motivate the customer to make a sale.
2. How can visual merchandising help in increasing sales for FMCG and consumer product goods?
The pattern in which a product is displayed has a huge influence decision-making process of the customer and hence on the final purchase. By displaying products in ways that are appealing, convenient, and attractive, FMCG and Consumer product goods can increase sales at retail stores and also improve their profits.
3. How to track whether Visual merchandising campaigns are working perfectly fine for a Business?
As a sales manager, it is very important to know how your visual merchandising campaigns are working in a fine-tune or not, while traditionally the sales reps used to do the auditing for visual merchandising. Modern solutions like BeatRoute’s AI-assisted Auditor App allows businesses to audit their campaigns through a standardized set of photo auditing forms and questionnaires with AI-controlled feedbacks which gives a perfect analysis of Visual merchandising campaigns for a business in a particular area.
4. How does visual merchandising attract customers?
Visual merchandising takes charge of the retail store’s beauty and displays the goods in a manner that seems attractive to its customers. Also, further inclusion of Visual Merchandising techniques such as campaigns keep the customers engaged and the conversion matrix for a company also increases substantially.
5. What tools can be used in Visual Merchandising?
In FMCG sales, visibility of the store and Visual Merchandising plays a significant role in the overall visibility of the brand. Proper usage of visual merchandising tools helps in consumer attraction and leads to more conversions. Top tools that can be used for visual merchandising in FMCG include vis-coolers, stands, banners, posters, signage, props, etc.