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Ten VM Tips That Work

Posted by on in Visual Merchandising
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Visual impact is a huge component of retail merchandising. Customers enteringmannequins a shop are greatly influenced by the visual information they gather in that first split second. One simple visual element, such as colour, can catch a shopper's attention and greatly affect their mood.

In today's ultra competitive marketplace it is of paramount importance that retailers understand the basics of visual merchandising.

Here are 10 visual merchandising tips to help you maximize your efforts:

1. Display sale products in a creative way. When building a product display look for products that are natural add-ons to the main product featured.

2. Use accent lighting to feature products. Customers are drawn to light. Lighting can make products shine and bring colours to life. Using this visual merchandising tip to wash a display wall with light will enhance any product. Accent lighting creates visual interest for shoppers, and magically puts products in their sight. This visual merchandising tip will impact your customers and your profits.

3. Change displays weekly. This visual merchandising tip reminds us that customers want to see new and different products. Stores that don't change their displays weekly will have customers simply walking past displays that are no longer fresh. If the customers have seen the same end cap for the last six weeks, the displays are no longer new or relevant to them.

4. Colour matters. Visual merchandising tips like this one are at the core of any solid merchandising plan. Colour can demand a shopper's attention, evoke emotion and influence decisions. Your merchandising plan should include bright colours not only for displays or end caps, but also for the middle of aisle runs. Visually painting your store with colorful focal points will help draw shoppers to those key areas.

5. Ensuring that your customer understands your offer is of prime importance. Mixed messages are detrimental to gaining more sales. If we display one item on a pedestal with its own spotlight and don’t add a price, the customer perception would perhaps be: this product is an expensive item. On the other hand, if we take the same product and display it in abundance in a retailers ‘dump bin’ the customer perception would probably be; a value product.

7. If your business looks closed from the outside, then customer perception would be exactly that, and they will bypass you even though you may be open. Think about your business……………your customer will!

8. The Medium is the Message - How you communicate to your customers is vital to the success of your business. The message you want to give should be clea and non-ambiguous. The medium you use is as important as the messenger itself. A broken 'A' frame or sign is a negative message - it demonstrates that you don't care!

9. Un-priced goods discourage impulse purchases - many customers won't ask the price and tend to assume the worst, tell them what they need to know, a price displayed is a 'trigger to action.'

10. Eye Level is Buy Level – People don’t like to reach for things out of arms length. Make sure your key products can be seen and if possible touched. Human behaviour is a study all on its own, but, here are a few tips that may help you.


  • People seldom look above their heads - particularly when shopping. High level notices, blackboards and signs are useful only as long range communications which means they have to be kept simple.
  • Position important messages at or around eye level.
  • Display products between eye level and waist level - keep all impulse items (purchased on the spur of the moment) at eye level.
  • If you really want to sell a product, involve the customer - put it in their hands, make them use their senses. If it is consumable, let them taste it.
  • Always have plenty of stock as this promotes confidence in your customer. Abundant stock sells!

Follow these tips and watch your sales rise...


Shopping should be a pleasure for everyone involved - customers, staff and business owners - never a chore.  I spend my time working with retail business owners - helping them love their businesses back to life!  This blog is my thoughts, ideas, tips and  musings on what I find...