The visual merchandising factor
Product designers from the apparel industry, work several months before launching a clothing and complementary products collection. There is a complex process of creativity to produce a cohesive apparel collection. For example, product designers sometimes travel overseas to look for inspiration and fabrics; but also, to assist to fashion shows to watch the newest trends of color, patterns, textiles, and styles for a certain season. Once product designers have done their job, it is visual merchandisers (VM’s) turn to make justice to the product (to make your product stand out).
VM’s have an important role for any retailer. They are the best option you can count on, to spice up your product.
Apparel products need to look visually appealing to the customer it is intended for. Sometimes a product can be sold by itself, sometimes not. It must look special in order to add value to it and create the urge that makes customers want it. Through effective visual merchandising clothing retailers can grab customer’s attention and interest on the product they are selling. There are many ways to give life to your product. You can use traditional mannequins, seasonal props, effective informational marketing, lighting, folding techniques, among others. Be creative, even on nested tables.
For instance, for nested tabled clothing, maintain a certain stack height and level standard. This simple visual detail makes all the difference; not only to make them look even, but to make the clothing look organized and easy to shop. One of the reason nested tables become a mess is due to over replenishment. Over replenishment not only turn store tables a mess, but it delivers the message that you have too much inventory of the item and you are desperate to sell it. That kind of merchandising mistake usually makes the product a low-selling one. Remember, the product is going to sell at a store selling floor not a warehouse.
Nevertheless, showcasing your main product, incorporating other complementary garments, to create a trendy look for the season, is the way to go. Customers are always looking for ideas, and showing them through effective visual merchandising, can really increase units per transaction (UPT) and revenues as well.
Think about new ways to present the merchandise to your customers. Keep the product fresh, clean and current. You can impress your customers and create an interesting shopping experience, just by being conscious about your product, brand identity, merchandising and store presentation, which is going to drive more traffic and sales.
Zeynep Taskiran (2012), in its thesis “The Elements of Visual Merchandising”, concluded that visual merchandising creates a desire to the products or brands, and that most people give buying or shopping decision by looking at the shop ambiance and visual display. Also, Bell and Ternus (2012) proposed that effective visual merchandising techniques establish and maintain the store image in the customer’s mind and provide support for the rest of the store’s selling effort.
Spicing up your product through visual merchandising helps, among other factors, to increase sales and customer positive response to the selling product and brand. Do not forget the importance of this cash-in tool!