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How Merchandising Affects a Store’s Sales

It’s no secret that merchandising is an integral part of the success of any retail store.  Whether you’re selling women’s dresses, books or golf clubs, how the store is laid out and how the products are displayed will have an effect on sales.  In many instances, it all starts with the planogram.

The Planogram

Anyone who is deeply involved in merchandising has heard of the planogram.  Basically, a planogram is a drawing or visual diagram that details where every item should be placed within a retail store.

This diagram goes all the way to show which aisle and which shelf specific items should be located on.  Planograms may be simple or they may be complex, but they’ll always add value to the whole merchandising process.

Planograms were developed and are used to help organize the product placement process and increase sales.  Overall, merchandising affects a store’s sales in a couple of important ways.

Triggers Buying Behaviour

One way that merchandising affects a store’s sales is by triggering buying behaviour while prospective customers are in the store.  By following the planogram and other elements of visual merchandising, customers are drawn to certain products and that ‘gotta have it’ mentality is created.

The merchandising strategy of a particular store may tie in to certain promotions or sales, and although it isn’t magic, it can create the urge to buy in the right circumstances.  The in-store erchandising strategy includes how the products are displayed, which complementary products they are displayed with and where in the store they are displayed.

When it all comes together correctly, a customer should reach a certain display at just the right time to invoke the desire to make a purchase.

Increases Store Traffic

Merchandising is also an effective tool for bringing more people in the door through the use of window displays.  Whether the store is located inside a mall or on the street, an effective window display can help draw attention to the store and bring prospective customers inside.

Once the curiosity is piqued and the people are in the store, the inside visual merchandising continues the sales process.  Merchandisers will update windows on a regular basis, and the good ones will analyze traffic in response to various window displays.

The whole concept of visual merchandising allows your products to be seen in the most attractive way possible.  Merchandising will increase the perceived value of the products and will lead to more sales.


An Introduction To Planogram Merchandising

The planogram, or planned visual diagram of products, is a drawing or visual diagram that details the proper positions of every product sold within a retail department or store. They are essentially schematics for merchandise departments; they show where things should go within a store and even the specific details in terms of shelves and aisles in which individual items should be placed. A good product diagram will also depict the number of identical products that can be placed on a shelf that faces the customer.

The extent to which a planogram is drawn will vary depending on the software used in the creation of the visual diagram, as well as the size of the store and the specific needs of the retail department for which the diagram was created. In some cases, product visual diagrams may not be any more complicated than pictures of preset sections; in other cases, they may go into far more detail and even show shelf notches and numbered peg holes that specify exactly where each item should be placed.

Planograms are typically created by specialists in retail merchandising Toronto and specialists across the World when they are made for larger retailers and huge box stores. Alternatively, the larger chains are likely to have their own hired staff for the express creation of customized product diagrams. Since the majority of existing software for creating planned visual diagrams is expensive, many small or independent retailers choose to use paper and pencil or word processors to figure out the best arrangements for their shelf layouts.

In today’s hyper competitive market environment, it is more important than ever for both vendors and distributors to have accurate and effective ways of displaying and selling their products. The average shopper is bombarded and overwhelmed by a dizzying array of choices for just about anything he or she could ever want to buy, and most people tend to pick the first things they see when shopping for unfamiliar materials.

As a result, it pays to pay attention to layout. Point of sale displays are crucial in the industry, as are well designed and implemented planned visual diagrams and other marketing aids that suppliers will provide to their retailers to optimize their chances of converting sales.

Two of the most basic reasons why retailers should seriously consider the implementation of planogram of their products are to optimize sales and to optimize product placement. However, there are a number of other benefits to the use of such visual diagrams.

Perhaps the most obvious one is that every square foot of space within a retail environment costs money, as it represents rented or purchased property, and giving it a selling potential gives the owner of the store a chance to recoup some of that money.

There is also the aesthetic benefit; just as a made bed is more appealing to look at than a messy one, so is an orderly and cleanly stocked shelf in comparison to a messy and disorganized one. It also makes things easier for staff, as products that are running low can be spotted and correctly replenished sooner.