Visual merchandising is creativity or an art of displaying merchandise in a store to attract eyeballs and boost sales. With unceasing growth of abundant malls mushrooming across the country, visual merchandising offers immense opportunities to youngsters. Passion for design and eye for creativity are key requirements for visual merchandising techniques.
A visual merchandiser, or VM, creates an environment, sometimes thematic, that attracts shoppers and prompts them to make extra, often unplanned shopping. With the help of mannequins and props a visual merchandiser displays cloth line based on concepts, themes such as festivals and sports events as well as stories.
The visual merchandising techniques focus on developing ideas to catch excited customers and increase the walk-ins. A merchandiser also guides and trains the retail store staff on how to fold and hang merchandise, follow instruction manuals and suggest them what items to put on racks and which ones to display through better lighting and display methods.
The Indian textile and clothing industry, particularly small scale enterprises, require adequate knowledge and expertise in merchandising.
Key Responsibility Areas (KRA)
- A merchandiser identifies a slow moving product and decides how it needs to be depicted or given prominence, in other words, how to match it with colours and background, or lit up/display in a specific manner to enhance sales. Every displayed article in the store has to be a representative of the retail brand.
- A merchandiser can weave cloth line in particular fashion, it can be a Bollywood saga, a business formula, any sports fiesta and a theme of a fashion show.The idea is to generate excitement for cloth line under the brand being represented.
- A merchandiser also works as a bridge between the design and marketing departments.
- Those working with an international brand does not have the liberty to design a window. They are asked to implement installation guide as specified by seniors.
- The domestic brands allow merchandisers to showcase creativity by designing a window, suggest a theme and let it display through the entire store.
- Visual merchandising techniques must amalgamate strong sense of colour, fashion and perspective. Experts opine that the technique is a science that mixes fashion, architecture, aesthetics, interior design and current happenings or season.
- Merchandiser must develop and maintain an image for a retail store that resonates with the target audience, particularly youngsters.
In a nutshell, visual merchandiser should be able to create a mood and turn the brand into a fashion statement. A merchandiser must possess prowess to compel window shoppers to spend money on articles or goods that they did not wish to buy.
Also read: Visual Merchandiser Job Description
Visual Merchandising Techniques
Learn and Grow with these Visual Merchandising Techniques—
Display sales items on end caps, fixtures at the end of aisles facing the main aisles of retail store. These displays catch attention of customers as surf through the store.
A common end-cap technique is cross-merchandising, where related items are grouped together to encourage add-on sales.
Draw attention to specific products in an otherwise regular middle section of a long aisle with micro merchandising. It uses different type of shelving or fixture than the rest of the aisle and implement a different colour scheme.
It is a method of cross-merchandising. It is created by building displays around a special event, festival, sports and so on.
Use of Technology
Enhanced technology encourages use of visual devices such as flat-screen televisions to highlight in-store advertising jingles.
Merchandiser can make optimum use of gadgets to disseminate information about specific products and boost sales.
Visual Merchandising programme
There are many certificates, diploma programmes offered by different institutes across the country.
Many institutes conduct an aptitude test and interviews for admission in visual merchandising course. Some institutes also offer crash courses for professionals. One can enroll in diploma programmes after completing Class 12 or those appearing in Class 12.
Job Prospects and Pay Packages
There are various extended areas that hold scope for a visual merchandiser. Exhibition displays, birthdays, theatre set design, theme parties, hotel lobbies, wedding decorations, garden restaurants are such areas. Several brands like Provogue, Shopper’s Stop, Ebony and Lilliput hire visualisers.One can also work as an assistant with a seasoned visual merchandiser and learn the business tricks.
An assistant visual merchandiser, or a fresher, can earn between Rs 25,000 to 30,000 a month; manager earns in a bracket of Rs 50,000 to 60,000 a month after gaining experience of five to six years; head visual merchandiser draws a remuneration of Rs one lakh per month after spending a decade in the industry.
One can expect a handsome pay package depending on qualification and experience.