elements in a beauty
the entire customer
experience; their role
switches from that of
a casual observer to
an active participant.
message. Graphics are an essential piece
of this puzzle and the crux of visual
merchandising. For example, a retail
display for a new type of eyeshadow might
incorporate large, high-def color images
of a model’s eyes wearing the product.
These graphics not only show the browsing
shopper what the eyeshadow looks like but
also illustrates exactly how it can be applied
to achieve an appealing aesthetic effect.
Expert crafting is required for the
graphics of beauty displays in order to
accurately convey the precise color, texture
and outcome of using the product. By
using graphics, retailers provide shoppers a
glimpse of the beautiful results they could
attain if they purchase and use the item. So,
when executed correctly, retail displays go
beyond catching the customer’s eye—they
also hold it there.
Graphics also can be used to prominently
feature a brand name. A study published
by Nielson found around 60% of those
surveyed reported they prefer to purchase
new products from a brand they are already
familiar with. Highlighting the brand name
in retail display design acts like an in-store
road sign, guiding customers to a name
they know and trust.
The Magic Touch
In a report issued by Retail TouchPoints,
90% of consumers who participated in
the study stated they still visit traditional,
brick-and-mortar stores to make the
majority of their purchases. However, 40%
also reported they had increased their use
of online shopping as well. This is not only
a reflection of evolving technology but also
of a growing consumer preference to have
multiple avenues for exploring a product
before actually making a purchase.
Retail displays provide merchants with
an opportunity to address this preference
through interactive display features such as
product testers, product samples, video and
audio clips. Using interactive elements in a
beauty display changes the entire customer
experience; their role switches from that of
a casual observer to an active participant.
Allowing customers to test products adds a
whole new dimension to shopping.
Also, there is scientific evidence that
suggests simply allowing customers to
touch and hold a product will increase
the probability that they will buy it. A
2008 study published in the journal
Judgment and Decision Making analyzed
the relationship between touch and
purchasing decisions. Study subjects were
asked to hold a coffee mug for either 10
or 30 seconds and then bid on the mug
after being informed of its retail value.
People who held the mug for longer not
only bid more for the mug, they also bid
higher than the given retail value four
out of seven times. This study suggests a
strong link between touch and purchasing
decision, which must be taken into
account when planning retail displays.
Although the average shopper doesn’t
realize it, retail displays are a quiet but
persistent force guiding their in-store
consumer choices, which is precisely why
effective display design is key to beauty
brand success. n GCI
RETAIL DISPLAY, MARKETING
PATTY PELLEGRIN is the
marketing and sales support manager
for Henschel-Steinau, a provider of retail
marketing solutions in the point-of-sale
and in-store marketing industry, offering
retail shelf merchandising systems, custom
point-of-purchase displays, warehousing and fulfillment
services to consumer goods marketers and retailers. Pellegrin
can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
TIPS FOR VISUAL MERCHANDISING
• Keep it simple. Avoid an overly cluttered, unfocused display, as that will
likely only confuse customers.
• Connect to the brand. Feature the brand name or logo prominently on
displays to increase brand awareness and encourage customer loyalty.
• Be smart about lighting. Soft or di;use lighting is more ;attering on
human skin and should be incorporated into displays when possible.
• Make it easy to ;nd. Displays should be created so they are easy for
customers to locate among packed store shelves.