Visual Merchandising Meaning, Significance, Tools Used for Visual Merchandising

15th November 2021 0 By indiafreenotes

Visual merchandising is the practice in the retail industry of optimizing the presentation of products and services to better highlight their features and benefits. The purpose of such visual merchandising is to attract, engage, and motivate the customer towards making a purchase.

Visual merchandising traditionally occurs in brick-and-mortar stores using a blend of lighting, colour combinations, and articles of decor to stimulate an observer and generate interest.


The first and primary objective of using visual merchandising to boost sales by promoting goods and services in such a way that their qualities and features can be shown.

  • To create a beautiful and positive ambiance in the store to make customers feel good by being in your store.
  • To attract passers-by people to enter to store.
  • To enhance the visual image of the store and to sell products by creating a beautiful place.
  • To educate customers about the goods and services sold in the store.
  • To entertain customers and to make their shopping experience more like a pass time than a job.
  • To get a competitive advantage over the nearby retail stores.



Marketing is the backbone of any business. Effective marketing can lead to increased sales and improve brand recognition. Your marketing should convey the look and feel of your brand while encouraging a call to action. Marketing strategies such as flash sales, customer loyalty discounts, social sharing incentives, and capturing customer information are all beneficial when it comes to improving retail sales and encouraging repeat purchases.


Adopting particular themes that pertain to your product or brand displays can further improve customer interest. A theme is all about a back-end story that relates the product to the customer. The use of themes allows brands to reinvent themselves with layouts, colours, fonts, design, and imagery.  The idea of a theme is all about combining colours, giving them a unique contrast, and grouping products to individual motifs.


The appearance, uniforms, lighting, menus, signage, color, point of sales material, textures, shapes, ticketing, and packaging make up visual merchandise. When these elements are combined, it allows a customer to understand your brand better. It leads to a positive shopping experience and increases the number of sales.

Avoid Overwhelming

Overwhelming your customers with visual merchandise is also not a good strategy. You offering too many choices can often backfire, as it confuses shoppers. Selecting the right products to appeal to your desired target audience is essential for improving retail sales. Not every product needs to be on display. The products that may have the most appeal need to be displayed in the front and center to attract customers. Analyzing your retail store in detail can help determine what products are to be displayed more affluently than others. If a product is placed in a way that does not give a high margin line, you need to change this arrangement. Learn, understand, and implement what users want to see.

Tools Used for Visual Merchandising


Not to be confused with a floor map, a planogram is another visual diagram of a store’s layout but it focuses specifically on product placement. Planograms are often used in grocery stores and retail apparel stores, revealing the best possible way to organize and present products using the store’s fixtures. If a store has gridwall, for instance, the planogram will reveal the peg placement in accordance with its respective products. So instead of crossing your fingers and hoping that everything lines up, you can rest assured knowing that your pegs, and their products, will fit just right by following the planogram.

Floor Map

Regardless of what products your store sells, you should keep a floor map on hand to strategically plan your product placements and visual merchandising elements. This visual layout will allow you to organize and arrange products for maximum shopper engagement. Furthermore, you can use a floor map to identify “untapped” areas within your store that can be used for signs or other visual merchandising elements.


Mannequins are also considered a visual merchandising tool, so don’t forget to use them in your store. Even if you can display your store’s garments or products on a rolling rack, opting for a mannequin may prove well worth the investment. Mannequins allow store owners to present their products (e.g. shirts, dresses, hats, handbags, etc.) in a more relatable manner. Shoppers can see exactly how the product looks when worn by a human if it’s displayed on a mannequin.


Last but not least, signs are another key tool used in visual merchandising. Signs can be used for any number of different purposes, from guiding shoppers to a particular section, to showcasing discount/clearance items. Regardless, be sure to include signs as part of your visual merchandising strategy.