Window Dressing: Visual Merchandising Done Right

Visual merchandising done the right way will increase your salon’s retail sales. 

AS BUSINESS OWNERS, you understand how important retail sales are to your bottom line. Still, the way you showcase the products you hope to sell can make all the difference..

Zoe Vears, director of publicity for Salon Success, recommends appointing a member of your team to be responsible for creating displays in the salon. She also urges you to tap into every seasonal opportunity, celebrate new product launches, showcase promotions and do your research by looking outside of our industry and taking inspiration from what the big department stores are doing. “Visual merchandising is all about telling a story,” says Vears. “People buy into stories, and a visual story throughout the salon will stimulate guests to make a purchase.”

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According to Vears, there are eight key areas of a salon—the window, reservation desk, stylist station, color bar, wash house (back bar), tool bar, take- home and in-salon display. Place visual merchandising displays and point-of- purchase material in each of these eight areas to create purchasing triggers. If you keep your theme the same from the sidewalk to each area of the salon, you build a picture and tell a story. In addition, she advises keeping the lighting in your window display lit, even after you close, so it will keep working for you long after you have gone home. Using brand imagery in the window connects you to all the national publicity that surrounds the brand and makes the salon’s story bigger; it also helps passersby to understand what your business offers. “Your salon window is your 24-hour advertising billboard,” says Vears. “Professional displays can increase your sales by 54 percent, and when lighting and movement are added, there can be a dramatic increase of more than 100 percent.” 

VISUAL MERCHANDISING 101

The formation of a successful display should be built around a triangular shape.

1. Message Have one clear message. Don’t mix messages from different brands or products. You have three seconds to grab people’s attention, so make it easy to understand what you’re trying to communicate.

2.Point-of-Purchase Material Check the positioning of how you hang items, and don’t cover your entire window—people want to see inside. Space is good in a display, so don’t fill every corner.

3.Product Group products in displays; odd numbers or pairs work best. Make sure bottles are facing forward and are suitable for the display you’re creating.

4.Props Props should complement a display, complement the brand and add a seasonal element
or point of interest. If you’re promoting a men’s line, for example, use masculine props.

5. Triangle The formation of a successful display should be
built around a triangular shape. This brings focus to your display. The eye generally reads in a “Z” position, so a triangular shape guides the eye around the display.

6. Detail It’s the little things that count. Make sure bottles are facing forward and that pump positions are the same. If you can see the window display from the inside, check that it looks great from the back too. 

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