Expert Accessory Displays
“Retailers can incorporate add-on items into feature displays to create more visual interest among customers and increase their average transaction.”
By Libby Dowd
It’s no style secret that accessories can transform an old outfit. But savvy fashionistas are not the only ones who can use accessories to liven things up. Retailers can incorporate add-on items into feature displays to create more visual interest among customers and increase their average transaction.
Adding accessories to feature displays, or even creating displays that put the spotlight on the accessory itself, will make a customer notice a product she might not have seen before.
If you wait till she’s at the register to show her what else you have to offer it may be too late, says visual merchandising expert and founder of Interior Elements, Leslie Groves.
To start selling more, read on for Groves’ display tips and ideas.
Display Idea: Delicate washes, lotions and cosmetics
Above: Eucalan Display at Vicanie’s The Bra Fitting Specialists
“When a customer invests in a pricey bra, she’ll want to leave with the proper detergent to care for it.”
When a customer invests in a pricey bra, she’ll want to leave with the proper detergent to care for it. And a bottle of perfume or lotion complements any gift purchase. To incorporate delicate washes and lotions into feature displays, Groves suggests dressing a mannequin in a bold new outfit. Then simply turn the mannequin’s hand up and rest a tray of product on top. “The mannequin is the feature and it’s serving up the add-on sales for you,” says Groves.
Retailers can also add a shelf lined with bottles to a wall of lingerie. “On that shelf, have a big framed sign that says, ‘Intimate Apparel Wash’ or ‘For Your Delicates,’ and this display will become a silent seller for you.” Groves says.
Jennifer Edgar, managing director for Eucalan agrees that signage will help accessory sales. All Eucalan wholesale customers are offered a point of sale display unit that includes hooks and a shelf for each product in the line. The unit also prominently features the company’s logo. “The bottle is not that big so retailers can bring more attention to the product by displaying our logo,” she says.
Display Idea: Apparel Accessories
Above: Baci Lingerie Accessory Display
“It’s very important to mix these accessories with the actual collection so it’s easy for the sales person to get to,” – Joy Menon, Baci Lingerie
Gloves, pasties and decorative bra straps are just a few of the items that complete a lingerie set, say Joy Menon, director of brand communications for Baci Lingerie. “It’s very important to mix these accessories with the actual collection so it’s easy for the sales person to get to,” she adds. In addition, having garters and hosiery displayed right along with lingerie items—arranged on a table or dressed on a mannequin—help the customer envision the entire outfit together.
Since many of these items come in packaging, Groves suggest taking them out and creating a feature display that shows off the product and allows the customer to interact with it. “When small accessories are displayed in packaging people pass by them,” she says. Groves suggests displaying fashion bra straps in a large rectangular frame. “Put one of your most prominent bras in the frame and then place a variety of decorative bra straps running parallel to each other below the bra,” she says. “Add a caption, like ‘Change it up,’ ‘Have some fun’ or ‘A different strap each day’ and people will notice the product faster.”
Above: In-store display at Blossom Boutique
“[Baci Lingerie's] Menon also recommends a less is more approach to displaying small accessories…A small grouping of products also creates a sense of demand.”
Don’t unwrap every product from its packaging. “Have more merchandise on a spinner rack nearby so customers can easily take what they want while it’s still fresh in their mind,” she says. “If you display the product across the store shoppers will have a hard time connecting the dots.”
Menon also recommends a less is more approach to displaying small accessories. Limit the number of items in a display to around ten. “If there is too much, the customer will get confused,” she says. A small grouping of products also creates a sense of demand. “If there is a lot out there, a customer knows she can come back for it tomorrow,” Menon adds.
Display Idea: Hosiery
Above: window displays at Dolci Follie
“Hosiery can be a profitable add-on sale as long as it’s merchandised correctly.”
Hosiery can be a profitable add-on sale as long as it’s merchandised correctly. “We have a beautiful line of hosiery that ranges from thigh highs to panty hose with pieces heavy in design and detail,” says Menon. “They make a great addition for each one of our styles, especially the basics that need a pop of color or interest.” To direct customers to their hosiery styles, Menon dresses each mannequin in a pair. “It’s very important to mix the accessories with the actual collection,” she says.
Menon also keeps a display of hosiery and other small accessories close to the center of the store. “That way it’s very easy for the sales person to pull,” she adds. If you have an entire wall of outfit groupings, Groves suggests dedicating an area to packaged hosiery. “This may take up space that was previously dedicated to apparel, but when it leads to an add-on sale it becomes a valuable use of that space,” she says.
Training your sales staff is important, too. Baci Lingerie employees are taught to offer the customer an entire experience by dressing the customer from head to toe.
“By continuously stocking well-rounded accessory groupings throughout your entire store you can increase add-on sales.”
While Groves believes a sprinkle of accessories throughout your store will boost sales, she also suggests keeping your cash wrap stocked with small add-on items that customers will pick up on their way out. Take into consideration your clientele’s needs and what is currently trending in fashion when you create accessory displays, says Menon. Place the most current and popular items near the front of the store. “Really tailoring the product to your business is important,” she adds. By continuously stocking well-rounded accessory groupings throughout your entire store you can increase add-on sales.
Avoid These Common Display Mistakes
Don’t vary your display vessels.
“A common mistake when displaying small items is to get a lot of little baskets and dishes to store them in. It just becomes a jumbled mess,” says Groves. “If you are going to use containers to display your accessories, make them all the same so they don’t take away from the product. I like glass cubes or cylinders, or for a unique look try hatboxes.”
Don’t display handwritten signage.
“Invest in nice card stock and have signs professionally printed and framed,” says Groves. “Keep all the signs, font and frames consistent throughout. This will help you send a clear message.”
Don’t hide your intimate lotions and accessories.
Rather, look for a more discreet way to display the items that will allow your customers to remain comfortable while shopping. All of Bijoux Indiscrets’ merchandising materials allow customers two display options—“A more visual articulation of the product, and an option for a more discreet display,” says Sally Cartwright, the US manager for the brand. “We understand how important it is to be flexible with displaying our products and we are sympathetic to differing markets and individual sensibilities.”
Don’t cover our erotic roots completely, she adds. “We are all about the power of subtle suggestion.”
Learn More about Retail Consulting & Merchandising Expert Leslie Groves
Leslie Groves: http://www.ieretailsuccess.com/mainpages/moreabout.html
Learn More about the Brands Mentioned in this Feature
Baci Lingerie: bacilingerieusa.com
Bijoux Indiscrets: bijouxindiscrets.com