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Window Dresser Extraordinaire

The latest news and trends from the world of visual merchandising.

5 Tips for Retail Success

The world of retail is big and crowded. How does one stand out from the rest, develop lasting relationships with customers, sell their product and create a beautiful space all at the same time? From a creative perspective, we’ve put together our five top tips for retail success.

 

1. Create an experience in your shopping centre through memorable activations.

Design interactions

Allow visitors to play with and experience a product. From pop-up activations and champagne bars, to school holiday workshops and personal styling sessions, there are many ways to interact with your customers to create an engaging space with a point of difference.

Energize your precinct

Engage and evoke emotions and creating relationships. School holiday activations and workshops invite families to extend their stay in the centre as well as create repeat trips to your shopping precinct. Design a late night shopping experience with a glamorous pop-up bar for friends to catch up at, or lay down some vibrant green artificial turf for a secret garden themed space with pallet furniture and tepee tents. With zones brought to life, customers will be inclined to increase their dwell time. Unexpected areas such as workshop pop-ups with greenery and colour strike interest and evoke emotion of wanting to be included in the activation.

Disrupt, adapt, react and innovate. (WGSN)

Activate stagnant zones by encouraging involvement and inviting interaction with customers. Encourage retailers to become involved in activating a space by instructing a demo therefore leading to sales. Inspire people to photograph and share your space onto social media for advertising and publicity. Add some signage with a hashtag and watch it spread throughout social media.

 

2. Imaginative windows and themed displays

Balance

Innovative window displays are more memorable and the customer is more likely to return to the store due to unforgettable visuals. Create a dynamic display by adding backdrops and layering merchandise. Remember the space doesn’t need to be lived in, so if you are using a table, layer up items and angle them in ways that aren’t meant to be used (such as glasses stacked and tipped over). Drawers of dressers can be opened with items spilling out and cushions stacked for a layered effect. The balance of the display can be achieved through symmetry (or asymmetry) and colour. For example, light colors appear lighter in weight than dark colors or bright colors visually weigh more than neutral colors in the same areas. Balance is not achieved through an actual physical weighing process, but through visual judgment on the part of the observer.

Theme or Story

Draw customers into your store through vivid window displays that relate to your product through a unique theme or balanced display. Use props to intensify and boost your selling item, design and tell a story in the window to connect to customers. A starting point could be a season such as Autumn or Christmas. A theme will carry your ideas, either subtly with snowflakes, or create an Autumn-scape with leaves and crates. Tuck your product among your seasonally inspired props and wait for the customers to be drawn into your display.

Lighting

Utilize lighting and keep it clean and fresh with no clutter but focus on the main elements you want to sell. Spotlighting can be very effective for one off pieces of merchandise at a higher price point. Ensure your window is well lit to show off detail in your items.

Signage

Keep your signage to a minimum with one key message, so people passing at speed can read your message in one glance without needing to stop and read. Too many signs can confuse a customer. You want to have one clear message indicating new stock, a sale or seasonal trends for example. Your signage might lead back into the theme or story you are telling the consumer.

 

 

 

3. Sell your brand – not your product

Personalization

No matter how amazing your product is that you are selling, it is your brand that establishes a memory and creates a returning customer. With personalization, your company will sell the product through company values and morals. Meet your customer’s needs more effectively and efficiently. Make interactions faster and easier and increase customer satisfaction and the likelihood of repeat visits. Stores that require details on a purchase can custom create a profile for their customers to tailor purchases to their interests and guide shoppers to the best future purchases

Product promotion

Advertise through your store through events, window displays and through social media. Create intensives and loyalty programs. Maintain a theme and colour – design is your first immediate form of communication. Create a maintainable look for your store, whether it’s colour or minimalism , your store should be recognizable as your individual brand when a customer walks in.

 

 

4. Change with the seasons

Trends

Trends and fashion change every few weeks, and new jumpers and coats come arrive in store long before we feel the temperature change. It is important for your store to reflect the change of seasons through displays and visual merchandising.

Brand Identity

Trends come and go, but your brand identity must remain. How do you stay true to your brand and current trends? Ensure your product is moving with the seasons, even before it is cold out, start people thinking about the cooler weather with window displays filled with coats and boots. People love changing their wardrobe and get in early with displays of the next season. Cosmetic brand? Think about how the weather impacts skin and market your hydrating products. Outdoor supplier? Instead of marketing swimwear and surfboards, focus your market onto land sports such as cycling and rock climbing.

Visual merchandising

Tweak daily, weekly and do a complete overhaul each month as stock starts to change. By changing your merchandising everyday and every week, people who walk past your store often will notice your attention to detail, the value you hold on making sure your products aren’t stagnant but you are aware of evolving to capture new eyes with various products.

 

 

5. Customers, Customers, Customers

Memorable customer service (the good kind).

With each visit to your retailer, you want your customers to leave feeling rejuvenated and valued. Take on board feedback and be willing to insert it into your company. Without change and growth is how companies become sterile. You need to work with your market, not against them. Think about up marketing to your customers in a caring way, to ensure you have their best interests at heart and you want them to leave the store knowing you have explored all options for them, even if they did not purchase, they will be more willing to try again next time.

Target market

Be aware of your market and who exactly you’re aiming to target. Is it teenagers, young professionals or families your product is for? Identify clearly who you are marketing to and tailor your marketing to them specifically. If your message is clear, your brand will have credibility by not hiding behind something it’s not.

Get social

Balance frequency and reach. Tap into your audience with a curated social media feed that reflects your product. This might also include inspirational images; with Instagram you have the freedom to include unrelated images as along as they match your colour scheme, message, brand identity and target audience. Don’t overwhelm your audience with constant feed, focus into your insights that are available and read when your audience is on your platform. Schedule your posts to match these times, be original and be creative. “If your brand is confident in who they are and what they stand for, your followers will have that same confidence and commitment to you.”

Planograms

Planograms are “A schematic drawing or plan for displaying merchandise in a store so as to maximize sales.” Impact purchase behavior layout planning and product placement to increase sales, spontaneous purchases and focus on high traffic areas. As soon as your customer walks into your store, dictate their movements through a well planned store layout. If you want your customers to make it to the register, manipulate the store layout and the product to get them there.

 

Talk to us today to find out how we can integrate these ideas into your shopping precinct with our expertise!

Call us on (07) 3217 4500 or email vm@vmplus.com.au

 

VM TRAINING COURSE/ WORKSHOP

Interested in learning about visual merchandising? Contact one of our stylists today at vm@vmplus.com.au or call (07) 3217 4500 to talk about our VM Training.

We offer opportunities for corporate or individual training.

Learn more about our visual merchandising training course here. Still need convincing? Read our blog on Why you should study VM.

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Make room for Mother’s Day

“Sometimes the most inspiring person you’ve ever known is the first person you’ve ever met”

Spoil mum this month in your shopping centre with a Personal Shopping Experience, Pop-up Champagne Bar or a deluxe Gift Wrapping Station. We also have endless ideas on how to dress your windows for Mother’s Day and celebrate in style.

Champagne for Mum

Create a late night shopping experience for the mothers out there with a glamorous pop-up champagne bar. Make it glow with hanging disco balls over head as they reflect the petals of a cherry blossom tree. Add some extra luxury with velvet furniture for mum to relax on as the family spends time hunting for the perfect gift. Keep it classy with marquee letters to catch the attention of passersby, LOVE or MUM are the perfect words to express admiration.

Pink Power

Decorate and design your windows for Mother’s Day with pretty pink flowers and love hearts. By choosing a colour, there are many ways to show love for all of the mums around us. Fill your windows with strawberry tones and use repetition to encourage present purchases. By filling your store windows with pink motifs, it is a reminder to shoppers that the occasion is coming up, your store front will stay in their mind and remind them to come back or go straight in as they know they will find a gift in-store.

 

Luxury Pods

A personal shopping experience or styling lounge is the perfect way to treat mum to a little luxury experience. If you don’t want to commit to a complete styling experience, create ‘luxury pods’ throughout your shopping centre. These pods might include some glamorous furniture, velvet finishes and enchanting lighting. Not only for mum, these lounging options provide some enticing seating throughout your centre which will be much loved by dads who might not love the shopping experience as much. A comfy seat will extend the time that customers stay in store and create happy shoppers everywhere.

 

Gift Wrapping

So the kids and dad have picked the perfect present… What’s next? Help take the next pressure off by providing the perfect gift wrapping station. Not only will this act as a marketing strategy in your centre, it provides an extra customer service experience. Gift wrapping stations, although practical, are a way to encourage shoppers to return to your centre as you’re seen to provide ‘above and beyond’ services. Our custom made pallet bar provides a no-fuss set up with hidden storage. Take it to the next level with custom signage, olive trees or fiddle leaf figs either side. Place a stunning rug or artificial turf underfoot to create an identifiable ‘zone’ for customers.

To view more of our Mother’s Day visual merchandising, view our online gallery.

Contact us today to create Mother’s Day activations in your shopping centre, business or store front.

Call (07) 3217 4500 or email info@vmplus.com.au 

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Easter Activations

“Follow the Easter bunny… He has the chocolate”

There are many ways to celebrate Easter. This year we’ve decided on four looks for various Easter activations and displays that you can bring into your shopping centre or store front display this year. Invite the Easter bunny into town with chocolate eggs and pastel bunting as children hunt for eggs in a bright garden party theme or create a sanctuary with a neutral look featuring DIY activities.

Bright as a Bunny

Vibrant green artificial turf, a life size fig tree, market carts filled with flowers and pastel seating for tired shoppers. The ultimate Easter activation! If your centre is thinking of promoting a school holiday activity area this year, look no further than VM+ to create a whimsical experience for both children and parents. From little moss bunnies to giant sunflowers, activation spaces can be created to ensure your promotion is the focus and time spent in-store is increased. With white picket fencing and kid friendly pallet furniture, our kids school holiday activations are memorable and unique.

View our activation gallery on Facebook here.

 

Carousel Capture

Get your hashtags ready and the Instagram filter prepped. Photo backdrops are the perfect way to share that your centre is current on social media platforms. With Easter around the corner, backdrop displays encourage shoppers to linger, take a snap with friends and share their location on social media. By avoiding the classic Easter motifs, target the next generation with beautiful visuals and your customers are more likely to share their experience. We love the paper fan blooms, cherry blossom trees and our white wash peacock chair for some various photo opportunities. If you’d like to add some custom signage with that signature hashtag, look no further than VM+.

 

Garden Party

Let us set up a “Sparkle Bar” for your late night shopping experiences. Grab a flute of champagne and head onto the lawn for a garden party adventure. With eye catching birdcages, florals and decorative seating, a pop up bar is the perfect way for shoppers to relax at the end of the day in a secret oasis. We can design a custom bar experience with lattice backdrops, wooden swing chairs, artificial turf and white picket fencing. You bring the sparkling and we’ll bring the bar!

 

Neutral and Natural 

Looking to add a sophisticated touch to your Easter window display? Want to encourage a temporary seating area with a pop up market? Easter displays can be created with neutral props to just hint at the holiday. Let these stunning features be the foundation for product you want to sell or promotions you want to push. By using pallet furniture, stacking crates with flowers or suspending foliage from the ceiling, there are many ways to create a unique look for your store. We love the textures of rattan lamp shades or the complexity of birdcages decorated with draping plants. Let your Easter product speak for itself with a neutral background.

We’d love to hear from you and your business for all your Easter activations and visual merchandising. 

Don’t forget, we also do VM styling for mannequin displays. Talk to us today to find out more!

Call us on (07) 3217 4500 or email info@vmplus.com.au

For all budgets, private businesses and national shopping centres. 

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