You have an ad. You have your 30 seconds during a evening news. You spoke up. And now, you expect some customers to enter your store. What next? We cannot go even close to stores’ marketing without mentioning merchandising. These two fellows would probably be Bonnie and Clyde in getting customers’ attention. And we cannot go a step further without mentioning a person behind it- a merchandiser.
Speaking about store business and tracking product lines from the beginning to the end, visual merchandising cannot be avoided. Visual merchandising, followed by in- store design is the first (and second) step in this process, because it is the first contact between consumer and the product. Additionally, it can be seen as one of the touch points in merchandising and marketing interaction. The job of visual merchandisers (yes! There is the whole science behind!) is the premise for effective promotions, stating standards for stores and overall tracking of products movements, as well as the aesthetics.
It can seem hard to be able to measure success of the visual merchandiser‘s work. Let us think as a consumer and remember what attracts our attention. First of all it is a window, and secondly the in- store design. Before any purchase consumers make, they notice these environmental points that make their purchase more or less enjoyable. In- store design, as well as window decorations have the effect in the long- term, so they are more investments than the cost. For the comparison, the windows are love at first sight and in- store design is the relationship. Of course, we are talking about professional relationship (we respect if you prefer some other type, though). Visual merchandising in the store can have huge significance in affecting the customers, making them feel good, because it can happen that sometimes they do shopping unconsciously, which is the circumstance that merchandisers have to take into consideration. Based on these premises, emotions, sensations and stimuli, consumers seek for the inner connections with the messages found within the store. In- store design leads the customer through the store, shows him/her a path and logical order, makes them to stop and finally make purchase.
The magic of shelves
When mentioning shelf allocation in the retail stores, it is necessary to highlight overall rule that refers to Verticality and Horizontality interference, which states that higher priced products are located in the top rows- vertically, and at the right- hand side- horizontally. Have you ever noticed this?
There has been a belief among neuromarketing scientists that there are some parts of behavior, related to horizontal and vertical positions, that are conscious and the other that consumers are not aware of. It seems like horizontally schemas are out of people’s awareness, whereas vertically schemas are related to stronger meta- beliefs that higher is better.
Another area of consideration is the sorting of products and not putting tomatoes next to the socks (Note: Please report if you spot anything like this!). Human brain is very logical, and by placing similar products next to each other the confusion of customers is avoided. Positioning the products within the store has a major importance, and it is not only familiar to retailers but to customers as well. Customers notice bigger, closer, highlighted products, and their attention is kept by creating gaps between products or introducing a different type of mixture. And for sure, they must not get bored.
M- Factor team will conspire in attempt to present you the living examples. Stay tuned…and do some marketing in a meantime!