All About Visual Merchandising

Published: 21st January 2010
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Visual merchandising is so important, especially if you run a small retail store like a boutique. People that work in visual merchandising specialize in marketing, advertising, promotions and the look of your store. Maintaining visual displays, such as window displays, is an important part of making your store visually effective. A retail visual merchandiser may also be responsible for managing inventory while planning for promotions.

If you are not in a position to hire your own visual merchandiser or visual merchandising team, then you will want to do some research before you attempt to do it yourself. You don't want to neglect certain areas of need.

The first step is to go over your business plan. What is your theme? Does your store look like you envisioned it? Does it communicate to the customer the types of messages that you wanted it to? This is the first step because the look and feel of your store can make a huge impact on a customer's decision to buy, enter your store, or return for repeat business. Keeping the visual displays in your store congruent with your vision is important for branding your image.

Work on window displays and keep them up to date with promotions and the seasons. A window display that changes often is eye catching and keeps customers interested. Make sure that your signage also conveys the message that you want. Large signs with big fonts communicate discount deals while smaller signs give you a more subtle approach and prepare customers for spending more money. You don't want to lure in people looking for cheap deals and then surprise them with your pricey merchandise. It's ineffective and can hurt your store's image.

Even the arrangement of your clothing racks can have an impact on the visual feeling that your store portrays. Garment racks that are close together give the store a busier feel. A garment rack that is packed with merchandise makes people think that the items are cheaper, like clearance items. Leaving space between one clothing rack and the next gives people room to leisurely shop. Having space between the clothing on the rack subliminally prepares customers for a higher price tag.

Keep all of your displays arranged in alignment with your prices and the message that you want to portray. Visual merchandising is all about making the customer feel how you want them to feel. Identify your target market, figure out how they want to feel when they make a purchase, and go from there. If they want to feel unique, make sure that you don't put out too many of one item. Make them feel like they are one of the only people that will buy this item. Take all of these tips and work them into your displays and you will be building the brand image that you want in no time.

About the Author: John Garvey is on the staff of Only Garment Racks, a leading online source of garment racks including clothing racks. Find a high quality clothing rack or garment rack at

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