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Retail Product Displays: What, When and How to Use Them

Feb 01, 2022

Outside view of a store's retail window display

Now more than ever, today’s savvy customers base their decisions on where to shop not only on whether a retailer sells the quality products they’re looking for, but the overall customer experience they encounter with that retailer. Yes, positive interactions between customers and store associates are a must toward creating that experience. However, as a business owner, you need every option at your disposal to maximize your marketing efforts, engage the customer, make them feel good about their shopping decisions and shop for your product. Enter retail product displays.

Owners may wonder why they should spend the money on product displays when online shopping is so prevalent. Here’s why: Although the shopping traffic on digital platforms is higher than ever, 82% of millennials still prefer in-store shopping.1 Again, customer experience is beginning to trump all else in a shopper’s decision to choose your product. So while your website, social, email and other digital channels are still important, the numbers prove it: a winning retail product display strategy is crucial to a successful marketing strategy.

Fortunately, you have so many options on the types of displays that are available, as well as where and how to use one or more of them inside your store for maximum benefit. Let’s look at all of the possibilities.

How to Maximize Display Ad Potential

Any fixture or display that promotes your retail product offerings is considered a retail product display. Depending on the type of products you are selling, your customer, the layout of your store and your goals, there are myriad ways you can organize and implement these displays in your stores so that customers naturally see your products, interact with them and ultimately purchase them. And though it may seem like one big guessing game, there is a whole strategy behind doing it right.

Here are a few pointers for building displays and making a big impact on your sales:

Location, Location, Location: This is the name of the game with product display strategy. Think about it: if your goal as a business owner is to sell a particular product, you would want to do everything you can to make sure that product can be seen. Displays that feature these bestsellers or top-pick products in high-traffic areas — versus in a corner in the back of the store that doesn’t receive much foot traffic — are strategic and smart.

Cross-Merchandising: Often when a customer is looking for one thing, there is another product that you sell that perfectly pairs with what the customer originally came in for. Displaying these complementary items in or near the same display area makes the “bonus” product easier to find, educates customers about its benefits to the primary product, and will help to prompt a customer’s impulse shopping decision. And before they know it, they can’t see themselves leaving your store without both products!

Create an Experience: Creating thoughtful, inventive decorative displays that capture attention will help you elevate your product. But don’t stop there. Get creative about how decor and other experiential opportunities can sell your brand and product for you while taking your customers’ shopping experience to “above and beyond”-level status. For example, leverage clever, “Insta-worthy” signage — then encourage shoppers to engage with your products and share a photo on their Instagram feed.

Organization: How you keep your displays looking says a lot about your brand and your offerings. Again, shoppers are going to appreciate you making the product they are looking for easy to find. It’s easy to allow displays to go into disarray (especially when customers are interacting with them) which can make them seem overwhelming, so always make sure they are kept neat, organized and clean to alleviate feelings of chaos.

Show Product Details: It’s not enough to just capture attention at the retail display; you must make your customer interested in making a purchase. Shoppers appreciate transparency and readily available information about a product (e.g., product benefits and price) so they can feel comfortable spending their hard-earned money on it.

Types of Retail Displays

So now the question becomes this: How can you bring the strategies listed above to life inside your store? We broke down the types of display categories that retailers use the most. Why? Because they have the most impact on their customers.

1. Garment Racks

If you are a clothing or furniture retailer, garment rack displays at the Point of Purchase (POP) can help organize merchandise in a visually appealing way. Garment racks can be circular, multilevel and can include shelves; just take your store layout into account to leverage the configuration that works best for your offerings. Then, think about how you can make it easy (e.g., by organizing by product type, size and color) for customers to quickly find what they came in for and browse through your selection.

2. Display Tables

Regardless of what it is that you’re trying to sell, a display table is a great way to capture attention right when customers walk through the door. This is where you can really play up that creativity! Showcase related items by holiday, season, new products, bundle ideas, customer favorites — the only limit (besides the size of the table) is your imagination.

3. Immersive Product Displays

Most customers have purchased something at least once based on emotion — how they think it will make them feel once they have it. Helping a customer envision themselves using the product with an immersive display is often the gateway to a purchase. Show how a room could be decorated, what a home gym would look like or how an outfit comes together. People like to envision themselves with the product, and these types of display designs would allow them to do so.

4. Touch, Feel, Test Displays

Making a product visible only gets you so far with a potential customer, so think about ways you can offer an elevated, tactile shopping experience that prioritizes your customers’ senses. When you have a brick-and-mortar store, this is the advantage you have over a digital-only (and even a virtual) shopping experience. Customers who have the luxury of physically seeing, touching, interacting with and even testing the products in person are able to make a more informed decision about your product — and your sales associates will also be there to answer questions and guide them through the experience personally.

5. Stand-Alone and POP Displays

A point-of-purchase (or POP) display can be helpful in leading customers straight toward a featured offer, message or product in your store. Typically, POP displays are seen in the middle of large store aisles or at the checkout area to incentivize and capture attention. If you have open space in one of these areas, consider thoughtful and purposeful POP design and placement to boost sales potential.

6. Display Cases

Transparent cases are are a well-known display type found in many fashion and jewelry stores that do double duty. Not only can you use them to entice shoppers to your product with a clean, elegant display, but you will also keep these higher-priced pieces safe from theft. Usually, display cases are encased on all sides in glass, plastic or Plexiglas, and they typically require the assistance of a store employee to handle the product and allow the customer a closer look.

7. Window Displays

If you own a brick-and-mortar store that allows for displays inside large glass windows, you really have a gold mine for featuring your wares in a show-stopping way. Let your creativity fly and you’ll make an impact on potential customers before they even come into the store. Well-made, well-thought-out displays tend to stop customers in their tracks as they pass by and can be a strategic way to make an inviting, captivating first impression with shoppers.

8. Shelving Displays

As a retailer, you should understand that showcasing products shouldn’t be confined to your available floor space. Shelving, or use of the walls, can help display a variety (and a greater number) of different offerings in a variety of ways. They can also help with the flow of traffic, allow you to display featured products at eye level, and give you an opportunity to organize the products however you like.

9. Endcap Displays

Endcaps are basically just what you visualize them to be based on the name: displays placed on the end of an aisle. They’re ideal for displaying merchandise that you really want to feature in a high-traffic area, because they draw your shoppers’ eyes as they stroll from aisle to aisle.

10. Glorifiers

If you’re looking for a unique, sophisticated way to showcase a certain product, a glorifier may just fit the bill. A glorifier is basically a small glass or plastic box that stands out from a traditional shelf to put any special product in the spotlight. Because they give the product an enticing air of exclusivity or high-end appeal (which is an effective marketing tactic), they tend to be the display of choice for jewelry, glasses, sunglasses, perfumes and other products that do best on a podium.

Work with Acima to Close Those Sales

Depending on your budget, your retail space, your message and your creativity, you can use any one — or any combination — of these tactics to produce retail displays that will get customers more interested in your product. Then, to ensure all customers (even those with less-than-stellar credit) can take home and enjoy your product, work with Acima to give them a flexible lease-to-own, no credit option and help you close the sale!* Read more on all the benefits of becoming a host retailer today.


  1. 60 Retail Statistics to Help You Build Your Business in 2021” –, October 27, 2021