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Visual Merchandising- The Future of Retail

Visual merchandising is a process that stages merchandise the customer wants in the right place, at the right time, for the purpose of influencing consumers’ apparel purchases.This process coordinates all advertising, display, special events, fashion promotions, and merchandising activities to sell merchandise or services. Visual merchandising cognition means that the visual perception of store characteristics reflects the brand image.

Visual merchandising’s objective is to maximize efficiencies by creating an enjoyable shopping environment, effectively organize in-store merchandise, and in doing so differentiate brands so that sales increase. The main aim of any retailer is to satisfy the customer, make profits and convert all those satisfied customer in to loyal customer. Visual merchandising is a retail term which is used to attract the customer’s attention, keep them in store to make planned and impulse sale.

Strong visual merchandising contributes to differentiated retail brand through cultural symbols and associations. Visual merchandising’s strategic roles are communicating the brand and its offer to similar target customers in all markets. It differentiates merchandise and the retail brand from competitors selling comparable products. Mannequins used in visual merchandising provide information that adds to consumers’ cognitive understanding of products and their social acceptability. When executed correctly, visual merchandising optimizes sales and profits.

Carefully considered design and brand communications, such as signage, in the in-store environment differentiate a retailer from their competitors. Hence, visual stimuli are critical to branding strategies. Visual stimuli assist in building strong brands by differentiating products, creating loyalty, allowing for premium pricing, cutting through clutter, and protecting against competition.

Therefore, smart retailers select their target market, build stores, and use advertising strategies matched to their customers’ values and self-images. Throughout the entire store from the lease line to the back wall and everything in between, the environment should
communicate the brand image. Every fixture, all signs, and store displays must fit the brand. The cash wrap, lighting fixtures, wall coverings, floor coverings, and even the restrooms should tell shoppers where they are.

Consumers have expectations about visual display and when displays do not meet their expectations, the brand may be re-evaluated. Consumers clearly express both cognitive and effective behavioral responses to visual merchandising.

Visual Merchandising helps in different way such as
Makes product easier to locate
Move product faster
Promotes a positive shopping experience
Help explain new product

visual display adds to consumers’ perceptions of store image and character, thus establishing a context in which to identify and purchase fashion retail brands.

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