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Top 10 Tips for Display Success in 2016

Top 10 Tips for Retail Display Success in 2016

Here are our Top Tips to help brands get the most out of their display campaigns in the coming year. As a long established retail display company and a believer in a collaborative business approach we thought we’d share with you a few tips to help super charge display campaigns and maybe generate a few good ideas along the way, we hope you enjoy…


It’s vital to have good quality display as part of your in-store marketing mix to promote and highlight the products you’re selling. Effective retail display can add huge amounts of value to a product launch or in-store display campaign – you can see a significant uplift in sales and gain a great return on investment by using a bespoke display solution, whether you’re launching a new product to market, or re-launching and refreshing an existing product range.

If you enjoy this short guide to maximising your chances of retail display success, we look forward to talking to you about how we can help you with your display plans this year.

The top 10 areas you need to consider when planning and installing retail display campaigns, get these right and you’re on the road to success.

  1. Get the brief right – be clear on your goals, clear on the space available for the display and clear on your budget
  2. Design – work closely with your retail display company to get the design right and visualise the end result.
  3. Location, location, location – where are you going to position your units? How many stores will you place them in? Where is the best place for the unit in-store?
  4. Durability – how long will the units need to be in-store? Are the products to be displayed time-constricted as regards supply, or seasonal?
  5. Engineering – using a good retail display company can save you money and time by identifying the right materials and manufacturing techniques to be used – one to leave to the experts!
  6. Production – use a company that can offer solid project management, quality control and a broad range of production methods with access to domestic and overseas manufacturing.
  7. Warehousing and distribution – if you’re rolling out a range of displays across a chain of retail centres, discuss how best to store, distribute and install them.
  8. Installation and stocking – understanding the possibility of unit management and stock rotation. Getting this right can drive higher sales impact.
  9. Refreshment – is your unit easily cleaned? Can you refresh it with new graphics? Who will repair it if it gets damaged? Have you factored in any costs for this?
  10. Equipment management and servicing – if you are selling your brand’s products through a third-party retailer, who will service your product? Make sure it’s maintained properly and still works effectively.

In more detail…

1: Get the brief right

Be clear on your goals, clear on the space you have for the display and clear on your budget. You need to discuss these through with your retail display provider and be able to agree clearly the end goal so you have something that meets your expectations and requirements. Within your brief, the key points are:

  1. Space – maximum floor space available in-store (the footprint) and maximum height available, including any header graphics and signage. If you are a retailer, allocating space for the unit footprint of the display will enable effective Customer Journey management and Health & Safety, and will help you choose the best position in the store for your unit. If you are a brand selling through a third party, you need to choose something which will be as easy as possible for the stores to site and install.
  2. Type of unit – there are many types of unit to choose from, each with advantages. A good retail display provider will discuss the options with you:
    1. A freestanding unit can make a great centrepiece and is easy to reposition
    2. An end unit to existing racks can hide exposed metalwork and fittings
    3. An additional unit to your existing slatwall system can add impact to your slatwall shelving with little extra floor space required
    4. A highlighter on a shelf adds impact and draws the eye to a particular product while requiring little extra space
    5. An impulse or till point display is ideal for small High quantity Low value products and can be added to queue barrier systems or on counter displays
  3. Quantity of product to be displayed – how many product SKUs do you wish to display, and in what quantity?
  4. Number of units required – higher quantity often equates to a lower per unit price and can have an effect on the materials and techniques used in production.
  5. Campaign length – is this going to be a permanent addition to your shelves or a temporary seasonal campaign? How long do you expect it to last before refresh? Again, this can have an effect on the production materials and level of in-store maintenance required.
  6. Budget – this is where using a trusted supplier can help work things out. Buying through an established retail display company pays dividends in managing production costs and increasing value.

2: Design

After the initial briefing, the first stage in the process is to approve a design that you are happy with, one that meets all your requirements and that represents your brand vision. Timescales can vary from a few days to a few weeks, depending on the complexity of the design required.

A good design could incorporate complementary shapes into the unit to enhance the branding and design of the product, and of course must include the correct branding, colours and logo that match your corporate palette and that of the items displayed.

Your supplier will deliver a sketch or concept art for approval, which will give you a visual representation of what you can expect in the final unit. In addition they may be able to produce 3D animations or even walk-throughs so you can really see what it will look like in-store. The display design will give you a good visual representation of how the unit will look in-store when it’s made.

3: Location, location, location

There are two points to consider here: which stores to locate the units in, and where to locate them within each store.

  1. Store location – how many stores do you have access to? Is the footfall rate similar in all of them and are they of similar size? Use previous data to assess where you need to place the units
  2. In-store location – sometimes the in-store position is obvious (for example a till unit, on counter display), but in general you’ll need to decide where best to locate it in-store for maximum impact. A good display company will be able to assist you with this using a combination of their knowledge and research to get the best out of the unit location. It’s also advantageous to factor in considerations such uniformity, it is to be located in the same place in each store? is that practicable? It is also worth planning how best to communicate your intentions to the store managers too.

You could consider locating a unit in different places in two stores by running a A/B test or split campaign to determine which offers the best option in an early rollout.

4: Durability

The durability of your display items is an important consideration. It affects what you specify in the first place, the engineering and production of the unit, and the budget and price. How long will the unit be in use? If it’s going to be used for seasonal items or for products that are time constricted as regards supply, it might be worth looking at whether it can be used for a range of seasonal items in turn each year, maybe with just a change to the branding, signage or other  element of the display.

Another factor to consider is the nature of the items that are to be displayed.  Are they heavy or bulky? How will the consumer interact with them from the shelf? How often will the display unit need to be restocked?  All of these are considerations to look at more when deciphering the most suited materials in the development & engineering stage.

5: Engineering

The engineering stage is the bridge between design and production. Once you have decided on your brief, agreed the design and decided on the number of units to purchase, you and your display supplier can move on to this stage.

This stage is where the details of the materials, manufacturing techniques and the development of the unit are hammered out. The size, weight, stability and product layout are specified now, along with any additional detailing. Everything decided now impacts on how the display units are produced and what they will be like when they’re in-store.

The final drawings produced during this stage are the technical drawings used by the factory to produce the items. These will be highly technical drawings and will be checked by a competent design engineer specialising in retail display.

Using an established and experienced retail display provider can save you money and time by specifying the materials and manufacturing techniques to be used, and they should check all the details at this highly specialised stage. Don’t be tempted to just look over the designs yourself – this is one to leave to the experts and a good reason why you hire an experienced display supplier!

6: Production

After the engineering drawings have been signed off, you enter the production stage. Using a supplier that can offer project management, quality control and a range of production methods including access to domestic and overseas manufacturing companies is key at this stage and will add value to the display campaign.

Prototyping will usually be offered on a new item for production or a repeat item that has had significant changes. A one-off unit will be made to assess its suitability, functionality and design to allow you to make any minor corrections to the unit that prove necessary.

Good retail display suppliers should provide solid and reliable project management, keeping you informed with as much detail as you need, as often as you need it, and leaving you free to concentrate on other matters. They should well versed in production techniques, logistics and have great relationships with suppliers.

There is a choice to be made at this stage between using domestic and overseas manufacturers. Your supplier can offer you both, but it is best to be aware of the advantages and disadvantages.

  1. Domestic production
    1. Advantages: shorter delivery times; lower project management costs (travel, prototyping, quality control); easier communication (same language, no time difference)
    2. Disadvantages: costs can be hard to gauge – labour costs and the price of raw materials, so in some cases it may be more expensive than overseas production
  2. Overseas production
    1. Advantages: individual unit costs can be cheaper; makes producing large quantities and cheaper unit costs means they can be great for mass production of display items
    2. Disadvantages: shipping time can be much higher; Language and communication issues; requires additional steps to ensure good ethical standards are met in some locations

7: Warehousing and distribution

Before production starts on your units, knowing how you are going to take delivery of the display units, how they’re going be stored and how they are going to be distributed to individual stores, especially if you’re ordering in bulk is a real advantage.

Will you be going for a single roll out across all your stores, or working to a timed distribution schedule (a practice not uncommon in Travel retail)?

Using a good delivery and installation team will ensure that the items arrive in their best condition – and also that they are placed into the stores efficiently and effectively.

If your display company offers this service themselves (many do not), it’s worth asking them manage this process for you as it’s something they will be highly experienced with and they will know the right couriers and installation teams to use.

8: Installation and stocking

Now it’s time to install and stock your new POS or retail display unit.

The first consideration is whether it can be installed by your in-store staff, or is a display installation team required? As when arranging delivery, if your display company offers a solution here, take them up on it – they’re the experts.

Once your display units are in place, they need stocking according to the planogram.

9: Refreshment

Your display unit is in place, you’ve stocked it attractively and now people are removing items from the shelves.

As well as restocking the shelves with your products, which is obviously the responsibility of your staff or travelling staff coming in from your suppliers’ depots, you need to think about how the display units themselves are refreshed. Also to be considered at this point: who is going to make the requisite regular checks to ensure the unit is planogrammed properly and no damage has occurred?

The completed unit should have been designed to allow easy cleaning, and which you can refresh with new graphics as you change your offerings through the life of the unit. Have you factored in the costs of servicing the unit? It might well be worth outsourcing this to the original display suppliers, if this is a service they offer; this will mean the work is undertaken by experts who are used to working with this kind of display unit, and will take the worry off your hands.

If there is any damage to the unit and it needs repair, then you need to have a plan in place for equipment maintenance and servicing …

10: Equipment maintenance and servicing

If your branded products are being sold through a third party retailer, or if you’re a retailer selling a brand’s products, it needs to be understood who will service the product?

The need to make sure your equipment is maintained properly and still works effectively will have a real impact on the on-going campaigns success. There’s no point having great planograms and shiny new products if the unit they’re displayed on is looking tired and letting them down. Whilst every effort is made through good retail display providers to build units with a suitable level of durability, accidents can happen and it’s always worth having a plan before something goes wrong. Maybe over ordering the display units by a determined percentile and arranging storage to be called off should the need arise.


Ultimately, working in partnership with your retail display company will help alleviate a lot of the potential pitfalls and help ensure a successful campaign. They’ll be well-versed and experienced with all the points raised in this series of articles.

Upright UK Ltd are a highly experienced retail display supplier who specialise in the High-street and Travel retail sectors. We understand the commercial realities involved in producing excellent quality and value P.O.S. whilst injecting the creative flair that helps set your campaign apart from the competition.

Get in touch to see how we can help you on: +44 (0)1530 831166

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