Visual Merchandising techniques

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For M3 I will be analysing the Visual Merchandising techniques that the group and I used to plan and build the display. For this assignment, we visited John Lewis in Kingston on the 11th of May 2011 to get ideas to be able to put together as a group a display for visual merchandising. Visiting John Lewis helped us gather some ideas for what we should include in our plan and how the display could be made. Visual merchandising is the activity of promoting the sale of goods, especially by their presentation in retail outlets.

Retail outlets are places that the public can buy goods and services. Display and visual merchandising are a key element for department stores in attracting sales and include in-store displays and window displays. The visual merchandising techniques that I used to plan and build the display are, use of fixtures and fittings, wall fixtures (shelf) and softline fixtures (rail). Use of fixtures and fittings- I used this technique in the plan and display as the stock are considered as permanent attachments as opposed to moveable items.

Wall fixtures- they are used to display goods within the store. This technique was considered in the plan and display to help to display goods that would be visible to customers and are able to reach at ease and highlight specific products. In the plan/display we used shelves because the positioning of merchandising is often key in the decision making process of a customer and stock facings-number of items per brand that can be seen as consumers look at a shelf.

Softline fixtures- a rail is stores are used mainly to advertise clothing. In the plan and display, this technique was included to be able to advertise the clothes which customers will be able to see clearly by just sliding the clothes across the rail and are easy to reach/grab. The visual merchandising techniques that I didn’t use to plan and build the display are block placement and horizontal product placement.

This is because block placement is products which have something in common are placed in a block (brands) and in the planning, we didn’t want to produce a block placed display as we wanted to have different products shown on our display that don’t have anything in common to capture the customers attention and lure them in. The reason why horizontal product placement wasn’t taken into consideration was because it is used to increase the concentration of a customer for a certain product; a multiple horizontal placement side by side of one product is applied and we wanted our display to be unique with its products and not be the same.

Retail space management In retail stores, this plays a critical role: * It helps to avoid stockouts and thereby lost sales. It helps boost sales revenue- our display is to be displayed near the entrance of the department store as this is more likely to capture the attention of the shoppers than articles buried away in a side aisle or in the back of the store. We have to monitor prices, sales volume and margins so as to place our most profitable articles in high-traffic, high visibility areas.

In our display, space was very important as we wanted our products to be spaced out so they are easily seen. We had our shoes, clothes and accessories separate but on the same display but a different layout for each so they each stand out in their own way. The group and I made this decision so we would not over crowd our display. During the process of the plan and building the display, the visual merchandising psychology had to be considered in everything which is, entice, impact, inspire and identify. D2 For D2 I will be evaluating the plan and assembly of the model.

We, as a group, think that what went well in our plan is that it is clearly shown on the plan how the products are supposed to be placed on the display. When we got to building the display it turned out very similar to the plan and well presented. All the products placed are visible and eye-catching. What was easy to do was the layout that was sketched on the plan of the display because the group already had an image in mind of what they wanted/how they wanted the display to be like. What we thought didn’t go so well us and struggled with was at the start of the foundation of the model.

What we then found out was that our measurements were not very accurate and appropriate for the display so we realised the plan’s rigidity and had to make some adjustments to it to fit the display and customers’ needs. What we found hard to do was, sticking according to the plan exactly as we sketched it and putting the whole of the display together was hard at the end. What was found difficult about building the model was, to start off with; we didn’t have all the right materials to make the base of the model and for everything else to be stable/strong enough to hold the products that we had to go on the model.

The improvements that I suggest in both, planning and building of the display are: 1. Size and scale of model- change measurements to fit the display better 2. More time planning and getting it accurate- take every detail of the plan into consideration to avoid any mistakes being made on the display during the construction of it. 3. Change of colour-have more contrasting colours on the model so the appearance could be more eye-catching to customers walking by.

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