Written by, Prof. Hitesh Kumar Kar || Dept. of Marketing
The art of increasing the sale of products by effectively and sensibly displaying them at the retail outlet is called visual merchandising. Visual merchandising refers to the aesthetic display of the merchandise to attract potential buyers, prompt them to buy and eventually increase the sales of the store. In simpler words, visual merchandising is the art of displaying the merchandise to influence the consumer’s buying behaviour.
The store must offer a positive ambience to the customers for them to enjoy their shopping. The location of the products in the store has an important role in motivating the consumers to buy them. Sensible display of the merchandise goes a long way in influencing the buying decision of the individual.
The end-user will never notice something that is not well organized: instead stacked or thrown in heaps. Proper Space, lighting, the placing of dummies, the colour of the walls, the type of furniture, music, and the fragrance of the store all help in increasing the sale of the products.
Lighting is one of the critical aspects of visual merchandising. Lighting increases the visibility of the merchandise kept in the store. The store should be adequately lit and well-ventilated. Avoid harsh lighting as it blinds the customers who walk into the store.
The signage displaying the name of the store or other necessary information must be installed properly outside the store at a place easily viewable to the customers even from a distance.
The retailer must be extremely cautious about the colour of the paint he chooses for his store. The paint colour can actually set the mood of the customers. The wall colours must be well coordinated with the carpet, floor tiles or the furniture kept at the store. Dark colours make the room feel small and congested as compared to light and subtle colours.
The store must always smell good. The foul smell irritates the consumers and he would walk out of the store in no time. Use room fresheners ‘or aromatic sticks for a pleasant environment.
The merchandise must be properly placed in display racks or shelves according to size and gender. Put necessary labels (size labels) on the shelves as it helps the customers to locate the products easily. Make sure the product does not fall off the shelves as it gives a messy look.
The dummies should be intelligently placed and must highlight the unique collections, latest trends and new arrivals in order to catch the attention of the individual. The dummies should not act as an obstacle and should never be kept at the entrance of the store.
Don’t play blaring music at the store. It acts as a hindrance to effective communication and the retailer can never understand what the buyer actually intends to buy. Select the theme of the store according to the season. Red should be the dominating colour during Christmas or Valentine’s Day as the colour symbolizes love, fun and frolic. A white theme would look out of place during the season of love.
Don’t keep unnecessary furniture as it gives a cluttered look to the store.
Why Visual Merchandising?
1. Visual Merchandising helps the customers to easily find out what they are looking for.
2. It helps the customers to know about the latest trends in fashion.
3. The customer without any help can actually decide what he intends to buy.
4. It increases the sales of the store and results in an increased level of customer satisfaction.
5. The customers can quickly decide what they need and thus visual merchandising makes shopping a pleasant experience.
6. Visual merchandising gives the store its unique image and makes it distinct from others.