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Display Basics

According to country singer Tim McGraw some things never change. And he's right. When it comes to retailing there are basic display techniques that apply whether you are selling records or rowboats, bats and balls or gift items and collectibles. When you're in a bind about what to do next in your store, consult the basics and they'll provide a road map for guiding changes.

The best place to start discussing basics is at the beginning and, in a retail store that means the exterior of the store - the front entrance and display windows. It's one of the most important areas of the store as it presents the store image and the promise of what's inside.

The doors to your store should be free of all signs except the one informing customers of store opening and closing days and times. Credit card stickers are also allowable. Above all, make sure your entrance doors are clean and polished regularly.

At best, store windows get about three seconds of a person's attention. In that length of time, it's impossible to see everything if it's crowded with merchandise. Keep them simple by showing a select number of products. Vary the depth and height of the products in your window displays. Place some objects toward the front and others a little higher toward the rear. Choose either symmetrical or asymmetrical arrangements. Symmetrical arrangements utilize even numbers of objects in even distribution. These are easy to construct and pleasing to the eye. Asymmetrical arrangements utilize uneven numbers of items placed off-center forming interesting, provocative displays.

Install track lighting above the display area using a combination of spots and floods to highlight your products.

The first 10 feet inside the entrance is often called the decompression zone. When customers enter a store they pause (sometimes imperceptibly) to peruse the interior and decide whether to continue. This space needs to be clear of merchandise so customers don't feel crowded or blocked from going forward.

When “decompressing” customers will scan from left to right. When their eyes light on the right hand side of the store, they should see an interesting display that coaxes them to discover further. The fact is, most people will move to the right naturally.

That right-hand area is called the flex area. Set up a display of your newly arrived merchandise or seasonal items in that space and change it frequently.

Move customers in a zigzag pattern through the store. Place your fixtures - tables, chairs, cases, etc. - on a diagonal to the front door. The diagonal arrangement moves customers from wall to wall ensuring that they will come in contact with the greatest majority of your merchandise as they travel to the wall and back. Avoid a long central aisle because it has been shown that customers don't like to walk more than four feet toward the wall from a central aisle.


Divide your store into three grids, front, center and rear. The front grid should contain the least amount of product because it houses the decompression zone. The middle section of the grid should contain the highest density of products and the rear a medium density. This density variation makes the store more interesting.

Avoid crowding customers in your high-density middle section. Research has shown that shoppers - women especially, don't like to be brushed from behind when they shop a fixture or display. If things are too tight, they'll move away from merchandise they're interested in and avoid it. There goes a potential sale.

Vary the height of your fixtures for more interest. Fixtures of all one height are typical for discount stores and yours is anything but off-price.

The cash/wrap or checkout counter belongs in the middle area of the store. If the store is long and narrow place it against the right or left wall in the center to give the store a “waist”. If the store is rectangular, the counter is most effective in the middle and center of the store.

The area surrounding the counter is one of the most important and profitable in the store. It's an area of high product density and one where impulse rules. Take advantage of it by creating interesting displays on the counter and adjacent to it.

Move products around in the store at least every two weeks. Nobody knows why some products “die” in one place and sell in another. You might think you have a loser when, in fact, it may become more salable if moved.

Lighting is a complicated subject but, if you keep these few techniques in mind, you can master it. Light levels must be varied to capture customer interest. People are attracted to bright light so keep the lighting on your aisles and walkways dimmer than the lights focused on your walls and fixtures. People will move from areas of low light to those of high light.

One of the most perplexing problems small retailers face is the use of space. There's never enough of it. You can increase your display space by building alcoves and pigeonholes and by creating freestanding islands. You can also increase your space by utilizing more of your walls, ceilings and floors.

Be aware of optimum display heights. On average, customers first notice products when they stand four feet away from a fixture or wall display. It has been shown that the best viewing angle is 15 percent below the horizontal. Consequently, the best average eye height is 51 to 53 inches from the floor. This is the most effective space in which to stock and display products and is referred to as the “impact zone.”

The impact zone contains the average eye height and is 3.5 feet to 6.5 feet from the floor. Place items in this zone that you want to be noticed first. The area above the impact zone is called the “top zone” and is 6.5 feet and higher. Products in this space will not be noticed as readily, but, after customers view what's below, they will move to this zone. It's a good place to stock extras of what's stocked below or related products.

The “bottom zone” is 3.5 feet or lower and is usually the last area customer's notice. It's a good place to show items in bulk and back stock goods you placed on the wall and adjacent fixtures.

Use signs to direct customers to your most important products. Signs that list the name of the product, its features and benefits and price are the most effective in persuading customers to buy.

This was a quick look at some of the basic merchandising techniques and rules-of-thumb. While you're not required to strictly observe all these rules, they are designed to help you make the most of your product presentation and increase your sales. After all, that's what merchandising is all about.

A chance to get noticed in the industry. A chance to show your creativity. A chance to participate and win display awards every month. (submit your entries at [email protected])
BVLGARI, Jewelry Display   DIESEL, Sale Window Display

A designer shop window, without the mannequins but there’s some ‘movement’ which gets the passerby’s attention.

The rows of these rectangular plates (white on left hand side of the entrance and black on the right) keep rotating and catches your eye instantly.

Click here to see the effect!

PUJA NAYYAR, City Walk Mall, Saket, South Delhi  


Courtesy Bob and Susan Negen | WhizBang! Training, Phone: 616-842-4237, Fax: 616-842-2977,
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Tip #97 If You've Got It, Flaunt It!

The very best marketing for small business owners isn't fancy, expensive, or difficult. The only reason any business does marketing is to persuade people to buy their product or service. It's really pretty simple. You need to persuade people that shopping with you is a great idea.

Create a list of fifteen (or nineteen, or thirty-three, or twenty-seven) Reasons why people should shop at your store or use your service. If you can't think of fifteen reasons people should shop with you… keep thinking! Ask your employees, ask your mother, ask your customers, ask your business neighbors, ask your friends.

Write it down. A list in your head can't be used! You've got to get the message out. If your customers don't know why they should shop with you, they may just go somewhere else. Here are five different ways you can use your list:

 Post it above your desk to keep you focused on the important parts of your business.
 Include it in your training manual and teach it to your employees.
 Turn it into a bag stuffer and put one in every bag that goes out of your store.
 Put it on the back of your business cards.
 Create a series of articles in your newsletter explain one reason in each issue.

Hey, if you've got it, flaunt it!


by Naveen | Member: Creativegarh

The main difference between the RGB and CMYK is that RGB is additive and CMKY is subtractive. CMYK is the mode that you usually see on things that don't emit light but reflect them like all the printed material, anything you see on a TV screen of the computer monitor is RGB as it is emitting light. The way the colours functions on the two is completely different. Like a red colour appears red in print because it absorbs all wavelengths but reflects red while on a computer you see red because the intensity of the red cathode or whatever mechanism is using is maximum (255) and that of green and blue is 0. Similarly in print if you mix all the colours (C, M and Y) you get black. Actually you get a deep brown and to show proper black, The colour black was added to it so it became CMYK. In RGB if you have the full intensity of all colours you get white.

As you see, there are two different mechanism meant for different purposes. There is no difference in the quality of the print. The quality of print depends on the ability of the printers to reproduce all the colours.


Sometimes when you convert a RGM to CMYK, you get a warning that all of the colours will not be reproduced correctly (mostly oranges and greens) because the combinations of the colours of CMYK can't produce them so the image gets a little dull.

This is the reason for having an extra colour prints. Sometimes if a colour that can't be reproduced correctly by CMYK but it is vital, an extra colour is used (mostly a pantone). Apart from this, there is hexachrome printing as well that has 6 colours instead of 4 of CMYK (orange and green are extra).
India is full of surprises. Retail IS booming. The practice of Visual Merchandising is common with every retailer, but unconsciously. Share the displays around you, near your home, on your way to office...submit your entries to [email protected]

‘Has the new Orange Blast hit you yet?’ Till some time back, McD’s region based ads & hoarding’s were seen across the globe. The above bus shelter by Fanta is recently installed on MI Road, Jaipur. I’m not sure if the same concept is taken forward in other parts of our country, but it’s surely a hit in the pink city as it also brings smile on many faces.
  Too small a shop. Too few merchandise. I’m sure ‘stock-take’ is not a problem for this shop. Jokes apart, this village man only paints pots in black color, and sells it for Rs.50 onwards. These black pots keep the water super cool during hot summers and is available in a small village, almost 100 kms south of Jaipur.

AMIRAN® anti-reflective glass-the glass you can't see

AMIRAN® is an optical interference anti-reflective glass, dip-coated on both sides, with a residual reflection of approximately 1%. In cases where there is a drastic difference in the level of light in front of and behind ordinary glass, it is usually quite difficult to view objects outside from the inside. In order to avoid these negative effects, more and more users are turning to AMIRAN®, the nearly invisible glass from SCHOTT.

AMIRAN® - The most important advantages at one glance

Effective prevention of reflections
In comparison with uncoated glasses, AMIRAN® reduces the rate of reflection to one-eighth. Any time inviting transparency is required, AMIRAN® is the perfect choice.

Versatile processing capabilities
AMIRAN® can be worked and processed into tempered safety glass, laminated sheet glass or curved glass, for example, as easily as conventional glass.

Easy to clean
If treated properly, AMIRAN® can be cleaned just like ordinary glass. Even the most challenging stains can be removed using the proper cleaning agents.

Outdoor use
Due to its excellent resistance to weathering, AMIRAN® can be put to use in point-mounted facades, structural glazing or post and bar constructions.



Source: DDI

The new "Insects" line features gold leaf-, silver- and pearl-finished beetles, grasshoppers, dragonflies and praying mantises in large-size and case-size varieties. New York. (877) 626-6378;



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