February 10, 2021
Whether you are designing window displays or an online storefront, your primary goal is to attract and sustain customer attention. In 2021, however, retailers have additional challenges to consider: Do your visual merchandising strategies account for social distancing, eco-friendly sustainability, or social media? In the modern retail landscape, businesses cannot afford to ignore these vital elements.
This article will explore the ways retailers can upgrade their visual merchandising techniques to remain competitive in 2021 and beyond.
Need to brush up on the fundamentals of visual merchandising? Check out Visual Merchandising: The Complete Guide For Modern Retail.
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In the wake of COVID-19, many retailers will need to rethink their interior spaces. Store layouts must now account for social distancing between customers — which can mean reduced shelf space and fewer in-store display areas. If retailers must limit their promotional displays to select core products, visual merchandising will need to change to meet the new reality.
This challenge can be an opportunity if business owners are willing to embrace these changes. One solution to changing store layouts is to adopt user-friendly technologies that enhance the shopping experience. Augmented reality features, for example, can help retailers optimize in-store navigation and provide in-app product displays.
In 2021, leveraging these technologies rarely requires advanced hardware — most contemporary examples use sensors and a smartphone app. That means AR will be easier to implement than ever before and a boon for retail businesses adjusting to new standards.
Climate change is an increasingly important global issue, and retailers must play a part in addressing it — with 50% of consumer packaged goods growth coming from sustainability-marketed products, they cannot do otherwise. By including eco-friendly elements in your visual merchandising, you will communicate a brand commitment to sustainability that resonates with a growing majority of consumers. In short, by highlighting green initiatives in your messaging, it’s possible to help the world and make a profit!
Sustainability in visual merchandising can take many forms, some of which apply to product packaging and others to the retail environment. Consider adopting some of the following visual merchandising techniques:
While it doesn’t quite fit with the “visual” in visual merchandising, many retailers find great success when leveraging other human senses. Sound, touch, smell, and — in the case of food products — taste can be a significant part of product merchandising. Whatever the category, retailers can draw from the entire human experience when deciding how to present their brand. Here are a few outside-the-box techniques you should keep in mind:
Of course, these techniques don’t override visual strategies. Color and lighting choices are major factors that drive customer attention, purchasing decisions, and even help visitors navigate your store. The key is determining which elements contribute to a positive in-store experience and building your visual merchandising strategies around them. You might be surprised at the impact the right combination can have on your bottom line.
Social media is a regular part of daily life for 3.6 billion people. Your customers are sharing pictures of what they’re doing, what they’re eating, and where they’re shopping — and the right visual merchandising strategy can ensure you’re a part of their story. By optimizing your business to be social media friendly and shareable, you can increase organic web traffic for your store and gain new customers in the process.
Just as businesses need to refresh their brand messaging, retailers must also periodically update their visual merchandising strategy. Given the vast array of social changes and cultural innovations of recent years, 2021 is the ideal year to modernize your techniques to ensure customers engage with your brand.
Are you ready to build a forward-thinking visual merchandising strategy? Get in touch with Resonai today and set up a free demonstration.
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