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Editorial blog

Brilliant visual merchandising tips to bring your craft store to life

29 Mar 2019

There’s something quite special about a traditional bricks-and-mortar store and its ability to inspire customers through clever layouts and considered visual displays.

Maximising your store’s full potential doesn’t need to be an expensive, daunting task. There are some easy ways to inject a bit of freshness and make the most of your space, which will hopefully impress some new faces and excite loyal visitors.

Window to the soul

The first things to consider are store windows. These displays are arguably the most important part of visual merchandising because they provide the first opportunity to convince a brand-new customer to take a look inside.

A good way to attract someone’s eye is to convey a story through a visually striking concept and well-thought-out theme. For example, if you’re launching a new line of winter fabrics and want to make it a focal point of a window display, why not pair the range with some other Christmas products to set the scene? You could create the illusion of a cosy room, complete with an artificial fireplace, handmade decorations, Christmas cards and a bespoke cushion made from your new fabrics. Executing these concepts effectively, with a touch of DIY, can give customers some inspiration from the getgo and encourage footfall.

Branding, branding, branding

Once a customer has stepped into the shop, you need to convince them to stay. Think about your brand and whether it’s consistently represented throughout your store. Make sure your company logo has a visible appearance on signage, packaging, staff uniforms and price lists. Does your brand have a particular colour theme? Incorporate the colour and its varying shades throughout the store to strengthen your brand identity.

Signing the way

Helping customers to find particular products is key so welcoming, dedicated areas, accompanied by well-placed simple signs, can prove to be really effective. However, it’s important that signs are easy to read and it’s vital that you choose your wording wisely. A ‘fabric corner’ is great but ‘sewing stuff’ won’t cut it.

Put your best on display

Next, think about how you can conjure up some creativity in your product groupings. Highlight your best-sellers on an attractive display and place them next to complementing products. A new customer contemplating the purchase of a sewing machine may be even more enticed by an attractive set-up, while someone who’s already made the purchase can add some new tools and accessories to their collection. Grouping similar things together can encourage impulse buying.

Visual displays can also be a useful tool to expose customers to other merchandise without being too overwhelming. Project examples, whether it’s a handmade quilt or birthday card, add another sensory element to just seeing the products in their packaging and show the customer what they can achieve when they combine specific items. If nothing else, examples can inspire some creativity and result in some helpful feedback.

It’s important to showcase your merchandise in different ways. Nobody wants to walk into a sea of monotonous shelves, so use different shapes and sizes and add height and depth where possible. Using an attractive mix of containers, such as baskets and buckets, can also set you apart.

Give them a break

Finally, spare a thought for the not-so-crafty shopping partners of your customers. Chances are you might have some benches and chairs already but if not, it’s a good idea to introduce some. We all know how bored a shopping partner can be when they’ve been coerced into going somewhere that they’re not particularly interested in. Chances are that giving these people somewhere to rest their legs will mean more shopping time for customers.

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