Retail Industry/Question ...


QUESTION: Good day
Based upon a typical dept store, I always wonder why people buy the things they do.
Can you tell me what are some of the tools, technologies and some of the most effective strategies that one could add to merchandising to cause the customer to want to buy the product.
For example way products are put out.
Please refer me to any books that provides practical insights into tools, techniques etc. one can use to make the customer want to buy the product.

ANSWER: This is difficult and I can only answer in terms of the USA market, since other areas of the world are different.

Rule #1 of marketing in the USA is that consumers don't read.  You have to have visual impact on your product in order to get it noticed.  Once they have found your item, you can draw them in with large bullet points on the front of your package, that highlight key features.  If you still have their attention they will then possibly pick it up and read about what it is your offering.  A strong visual image that is readily recognizable is going to be your strongest tool.

Rule #2 is placement of your product.  Placement in the store is a key factor in that most people begin shopping from the front and work the store front to back, left to right.  Stores usually put their highest sales volume items in the back of the store to lure you in and make you walk past everything else.  Placement on the aisle is equally important, we read from left to right and top to bottom and that is the same way we shop.  The area of the aisle that will get the greatest attention is eye level on the left end of the table.

Store merchandising and packaging is a true art form and I'm sure there are lots of books on it, but I would not venture to tell you which is best.  I hope this helps somewhat, please let me know if I can be of further assistance.

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QUESTION: Thanks for the answer.
I found Rule #2 insightful. Where can I get further insights into placement or products. Can you refer me to any resources, experts, tools, articles etc..

Also Rule #1, what makes a visual image strong.

I wish I could offer you some literature on this, but I'm afraid it would just require some searches to find what suits your needs.  Most of my knowledge on this just comes from thirty years of doing it.  I'm sure there is some great literature, I just am not certain the best direction to point you.

A visually strong image is achieved by making the consumer know and understand the basic use of your product without the need to read verbiage.  

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Steven Ramsby


I can answer most anything on retail sales, marketing, placement, packaging, importing and distribution.


15 years in retail as a store owner/ manager then buyer for a large retail chain. 28 years as a sales and marketing specialist and entrepreneur. I have worked with companies in Europe, China, Canada and Mexico in developing, marketing and sales of product to major retailers throughout the USA.

Long Beach State

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