8 Ways To Transform Retail Store Displays Into Sales

Retail Store Displays

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Updated for relevance May 24, 2024

There are many ways your sales displays can be your silent salesperson. The trick is to make sure your displays include some of the basics.

Try these eight ways to make your retail store displays do more than look attractive.

1. Change your displays monthly

You’ve got to keep your customers guessing – a little, anyway.

Move the sales displays around every couple of weeks to keep them from getting stale—and certainly, move them when new merchandise comes in. Since fairly new products will still sell, switch your displays two weeks after arrival. Move one display from the front to the middle of the store and another display from the middle to the back.

Discover How to craft a retail merchandising plan with this comprehensive primer

2. Try a little tenderness

In merchandising, as in life, the best things are things you want, not what you need. So give your customer that as well.

Put the fanciest, newest, most expensive, dream-worthy items in the most prominent place in your store.

Be sure to have several levels of height and enough products so the customer can pick up and touch these desired items without dismantling your beautiful display.

3. Never, never, never, EVER build a monochromatic display

Generally speaking, group items by product use or two or three colors – you’re looking for the one thing that makes it a group.

Unless you run a grocery store, your grouping shouldn’t be entirely made up of one product. That’s warehousing, not merchandising. You can create a sales display by product use, such as all items related to brewing and drinking tea.

Or display by color, but make sure you use another strong color to pop out against the one. Think white and red or red and black. Avoid monochrome retail displays because, although possibly chic, human eyes quickly get the point and move on – frequently without buying.

4. Don’t ever put up a sign that says DO NOT TOUCH

Don’t even do that in a glass store!

Why? You might as well put up a sign that says DO NOT BUY. Retail displays are supposed to get messed up.

Think of your sales displays like your kitchen table – nobody eats without crumbs. Don’t fear customer interaction with your goods; always straighten up constantly.

5. Trust in lagniappes: Sales display props

Lagniappe – pronounced lon-yop – is used in New Orleans for “little surprise.”

A merchandising lagniappe would be a totally unrelated item used as a fun prop, such as a soup bowl with a sweater collection or a stuffed animal with your kitchenware display. While adding a prop to every display is overkill, the possibilities should always be in the back of your mind.

6. Light up your display like it’s a meteor shower

You’ll probably have to adjust overhead lighting to do this. But if you have a particularly dark display with no way to highlight it from above, consider moving it to an existing light source or light from below with small portable spotlights. Remember, proper lighting can make your merchandise seem wondrous.

7. Put tags on everything

Do you know how much you hate asking how much something is? Your customers are just like you, so make sure all of your stock is priced. No one wants to have to ask a clerk how much something costs.

8. Level up your retail displays

Visually merchandising your retail store correctly allows your merchandise to sell to every customer who walks past silently. Check out these pages for more on retail visual merchandising.