Into the realm of visual merchandising, we are going to see how this vital and exciting marketing technique can propel sales in the fashion business. Retail stores have long been using visual merchandising as an effective way to provide customers with a unique experience of purchasing products. Here is why online startups cannot afford to overlook visual merchandising.

Visual Merchandising is one of the lucrative ways to not only attract potential buyers but also to let them feel connected to the product.

The key factors that boost several metrics via visual merchandising are as follows:

  • Engagement and time-on-site
  • Store navigation and ease
  • Order inventory
  • Conversions

A few elements that go into compiling the aesthetics of providing customer experience include:

  • Interactive Designs Display
  • Floors
  • Mannequins
  • Lightning
  • Décor
  • Exterior Signage
  • Landscaping
  • Windows Installations

All the points mentioned above help a fashion or retail industry business to increase its brand visibility and loyalty. Such methods have proven to be raking in a high success ratio to engage customers.

Essentials of Visual Merchandising:

Vision The first thing our mind notices is the color in a visual. The display appears to be playing an essential role to the viewers on a subconscious level.

visual merchandise awareness
Anthropologie                                                                                   Pic Courtesy: Pinterest

Anthropologie – a clothing retailer marvelously took marketing in hand to create a pleasing display. The Anthropology theme of societies, cultures, and development.

Touch Retail stores need to provide their customers with the ability to touch, feel, and try out the products on the shelf/display.

Sound Retailers can create a lively ambiance by playing music. The kind of music you play also has an impact on your customers’ spending approach.

Smell The aroma also plays a vital role for a shopper to choose one brand over another as the scent has impacted over emotion and memory.

Storytelling Retail store owners can have a significant impact on visitors by engaging them via brand storytelling messages or dialogues.

creative displays
Hermès                        Pic Courtesy: Pinterest

“Hermès” a brand providing high fashion luxury goods impeccably showcases its leather products in window displays.

Taste What taste is to a food and beverage company is similar to letting people try clothes on for a fashion retail outlet.

Utilize Empty Space The underutilized space in the store has to be put to use with creatives, banners, etc. which emits a warm feeling. Customers can relate to such lifestyle graphics. Paying attention to details in designing displays can work wonders for retail stores.

utilize empty space
Learn to Utilize Empty Space               Pic Courtesy: Pinterest

A window displays of products from Isabel Marant – a French fashion house clearly depicts how to make use of those corner spaces.

Product Styling – Drawing customer’s attention via an organized product styling and placement remains one of the essentials of visual merchandising. Enabling a focal point or hotspot with various products allows customers to pay more attention to the core product.

online store display
Online Store Display     Pic Courtesy: Pinterest

An intelligent display of product styling from Tommy Hilfiger.

Systematic Expose to Display – Balancing the shop display design is an art to appeal to the mind-set of new and existing customers. Loading new arrivals and popular merchandise create a sales-driven approach. Moreover, a well-designed display leads customers to a natural selection of merchandise while also avoiding a mess.

Purpose of Visual Merchandising:

The primary use of visual merchandising at the core remains the same, i.e., to pull customers in-store and bring in profits for the business. A few among the others are:

To draw more sales via promoting your brand’s merchandise and products

  • With signage, décor and displays encourage more and more customers to enter the store and buy
  • Allowing customers some room and space to pause, make decision and shop
  • Using different elements of visual merchandising in the shop to enlarge the store’s visual image
  • Improving customer’s shopping experience and keeping them engaged and entertained
  • Educating customers about the products via usage, accessories of merchandise helps in building a brand’s awareness

The Onset of Online Merchandising Store:

With the technology growing leaps and bounds in every sector, visual merchandising isn’t limited to just retail stores. Online stores have massively penetrated this segment, making this concept come alive on the web.

Additionally, eCommerce sites have paved the way for brands not only to sell their products on their online shopping site but also on Amazon, Facebook, etc.

Though, catering your products via a personalized e-commerce site provides a unique and engaging digital merchandising experience rather than promoting it on a third party vendor site.

There is also a business segment that is under the impression that they do not need to build an online merchandise website. On the contrary, in today’s age of digitalization, store design and layout, digital merchandising, etc. remains the core medium to draw customers and increase revenue.

Helping a brand to tell a story so that the customers can relate and connect to the product is your goal in merchandising. Urging not only startups but, more importantly, small and medium enterprises to get on board with visual merchandising.

Here’s how even small brands can also make it big time by transforming their weakness into a strength.

  1. Small Product Catalogue – Well, don’t worry. Have you heard ‘Less is More.’ – exactly. Small brands with fewer catalog products can create a distinctive experience to products and manage SKU (Store Keeping Units).

    It is essential to understand that starting your online business store is not only to have a product selling website but instead letting your customers experience the brand.

Key takeaway: Catalogue with limited products can pave the way to a more immersive way of brand storytelling.

  1. Product Filtering – Bigger brands use product filtering feature, which allows customers to search with product keyword directly. However, this presents an opportunity for smaller brands to jump into the visual merchandising to have more brand engagement starting from the landing page and let the customers connect to their product.

Key takeaway: Let your customers follow through the visual merchandising straight from the product landing page.

  1. Not a Big Brand to Provide Experience – A few handfuls of fashion brands have created a niche segment when it comes to visual merchandising. Mostly, due to the constant inflow of new collection and a large SKU count. However, smaller brands can also deliver such an exquisite experience directly to customers, B2B, B2C, and even to non-fashion brands.

Key takeaway: The global community has a diversified choice of interest and prefer selecting products unique to their style. Small brands can take this factor into account.

  1. Do Not Have Time – Online stores need to keep an eye on their customers’ data. From time to time, they need to implement a strategy to acquire a new customer base as well as to manage customer retention ratio. To do this, they need to focus on the following metrics:
  • The average order value gets increased
  • Expand the number of purchases from customers
  • Increase your total customer base

Key takeaway: Acquiring new customers can cost twice as compared to holding on to existing ones. Build customer relations and keep adding new stocks to inventory.

These types of visual merchandising can be homepage storytelling that will boost your brand.

Use a collection based with or without feature products with your quick and easy merchandising. These attributes can be the go-to approach for online marketing strategies for startups and small and medium retail enterprises.

Display of merchandise can create a different array of emotions and can evoke self-connection.

Though visual merchandising is not only limited to brick-and-mortar stores. Nowadays, there are many best online shopping sites for clothes; however, there will always be a need for eCommerce sites to provide a more in-depth, immersive, engaging, and personalized experience for customers.

Kritika Pndey

Senior Marketing Executive

She is a Marketing Expert by profession and she is fond of Gadgets! When she's not hard at work, she can be found wandering, reading and just generally having a good time in life.