by Simon Mitchell, Action Storage
It might not seem so obvious to the customer, but there is a delicate, tactical science to arranging products in a retail space in order to boost the visual appeal of your products and, ultimately, boost your profits. We’ve narrowed it down to three vital areas with the greatest potential for maximizing shelf appeal and giving your store’s revenue a welcome shot in the arm.
1. Solve Problems to Boost Profits
The most important thing to remember when designing the layout of your store is that your customers come to you to find a solution — and one that they don’t necessarily want to spend a long time looking for.
Luckily, there are some strategic ways you can organize and utilize the shelving bays used in your product displays to transform your retail space into a one-stop problem-solving shop. Known in the industry as cross-merchandising, this tactic is as simple as it is effective. Do you stock fresh bread? Make sure your spreads and sandwich fillings are located on nearby shelves for shoppers on a sandwich mission. Sell tortilla chips? Tactically place your range of dips nearby for maximum convenience.
To go the extra mile, it’s key to make sure your shelf solutions are reactive and changeable — so keep an eye on what people might need suddenly. If you’re the only store in town with a shelf full of discount umbrellas or rain ponchos on a wet day, you stand to earn a bundle through solution-based purchases.
This concept can be extended to just about anything, from discount barbecue grills and water bottles on a hot day to hats and gloves when the mercury drops — the first step is to carefully consider your inventory and, from there, figure out which of your customers’ problems you’re already in a prime position to solve.
2. Remember: Eye Level is Buy Level
Positioning particularly high-margin products which stand to make your store a tidy profit at the customer’s eye level is one of the central tenets of store merchandising. If the customer immediately sees what they want, they’ll buy it — so it follows that placing big brands in the middle of the shelf where most people are looking will pay off. This makes the shopping experience smooth and seamless, creating happy customers who are more likely to return.
Make sure you’re taking more than one eye level into account, too, as children are often fairly persuasive with their parents when accompanying their parents. Placing brightly colored kids’ products a few feet up from the floor is a common tactic used by retail giants the world over — ensuring that children can instantly find their favorite must-haves during their journey around the store.
This concept is scalable, too — if you run a small bakery, for example, think about placing gingerbread men and colorful doughnuts at the bottom of the display case (which can easily be spotted by little faces pressed up against the glass).
3. Harness Color Psychology
Color is especially important in many stores, especially supermarkets and delis, as the first thing people see when walking into the majority of major food retailers is a colorful display of fresh fruit and vegetables. These displays are strategically designed to put customers in a sprightly mood, communicating a sense of natural, technicolor freshness.
Bright, bold colors can also be found on the packaging of just about any item, making it virtually effortless to employ a merchandising tactic known as color blocking. Organizing products based on their color and placing them next to blocks of items in complementary shades (consult the color wheel if you’re ever unsure) will go a long way when it comes to grabbing the attention of customers — especially if your retail space competes with others in a shopping area.
Combining these three tips to create a vibrant shopping experience is a powerful, tried and tested approach to giving your products irresistible shelf appeal. With a complementary blend of striking colors, cleverly organized displays and a solution-first tactical outlook, you can shift high-margin products, inspire bulk-buys and make a worthwhile impact on your store’s bottom line.
Simon Mitchell has run successful companies in Europe and the US that are focused on delivering exceptional value to clients. Action Storage offers a diverse range of storage products, along with the technical expertise to help clients’ businesses operate more efficiently. In Simon’s words, that’s a rewarding place to be.