Merchandising Know-How: Favorite New Merchandising Tools

I'm always on the lookout for new, cool merchandising items that I can tell retailers about. One of the best places to find new things is the GlobalShop trade show held each year in March. There's always something to find among the custom fixtures, lighting systems, flooring, wall coverings, props and graphics suppliers. This year was no exception.
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I'm always on the lookout for new, cool merchandising items that I can tell retailers about. One of the best places to find new things is the GlobalShop trade show held each year in March. It moves around from city to city, and this year was held in Orlando, Fla. There's always something to find among the custom fixtures, lighting systems, flooring, wall coverings, props and graphics suppliers. This year was no exception.

Here are some of my favorites from the show:

Mills Floral Company

770-729-8995

www.millsfloralsales.com

Diamond Drops are tiny clear glass drops that resemble water droplets. They are available in a 2-ounce package to 55-pound sacks and are perfect to use in a showcase when you show waterproof products like watches and cameras. They cost from $4.50 to $6.75 a bag depending on the quantity.



Mills Floral Company also sells a wide array of colorful wreaths, natural twig bundles and great holiday florals.

Wind Mill Slatwall Products

800-548-7528

www.windmillslatwall.com

Wind Mill Products supplies all types of slatwall from the traditional to the unique. Besides the melamine wood grains and wood veneers, the company offers custom slatwall panels that include BRICKwall, a slatwall panel with a brick-looking façade; CUBEwall, slatwall with square grooves; DASHwall, my favorite with dashed instead of continuous grooves; PROFilewall, a slatwall to which you can attach graphics; and POPwall, slatwall with random or patterned grooves.



If you're looking to update your tired old slatwall go online and check out Wind Mill Slatwall products.

ScentAir

704-504-2254

www.scentair.com

This was probably the most popular booth at GlobalShop. Four pods were arranged on a platform in the booth. Show goers could sit in a pod, don virtual reality glasses and experience various scents synchronized with matching visuals.



ScentAir is not selling the pods but, instead, have a scent delivery system that dispenses scents, of choice, in retail spaces of 2,000 to 4,000 square feet. The ScentAir system is a small unobtrusive fan that holds a cartridge embedded with scent. A new cartridge is delivered each month and scents can be changed as often as one likes.



When you consider that pleasant scents improve mood by 40 percent and keep people in stores longer (the longer in the store, the more apt they are to buy), it makes sense to add scents to the retail environment. ScentAir has made it easy.

Dazian Fabrics Inc.

877-232-9426

www.dazian.com

No doubt you've seen bead curtains in restaurants and department stores, but why not in outdoor stores? Bead curtains are the perfect backdrop for a display window because they are semi opaque so viewers can see into the store, reflect light to attract attention, and are easy and convenient to use.

Dazian makes a chain-link curtain that I've found to be the easiest to install, the lightest weight and the least expensive of similar products. ChromoLink chains are 100-percent aluminum and come in ready to hang sections in the company's Do-It-Yourself ChromaLink Chain Bags. One bag covers 55 linear yards, or 6.8 square feet, and costs $66.95. The chains come in colors and in a variety of metal finishes. To install, you'll need a header for an extra $30. Headers are either flat or curved depending on where you're going to hang the curtains.

CDC - The Combination Door Company

920-922-2050

www.combinationdoor.com

If you're still using that paint drop cloth to close off your dressing rooms, it's time to consider getting a real door. CDC specialized in doors of all kinds and has some handsome looking ones designed especially for dressing rooms. Trust us, your customers will enjoy the privacy.



Super Vision International


407-857-9900

www.svision.com

LED lighting has always fascinated me. I like the colors, and the way they morph into one another. Color lighting is the big thing in retail and public spaces lighting, and now it's smaller and easier to use in smaller spaces. Super Vision has introduced the SaVi Flood Strip that is perfect for use above cabinets, in coves, under stairs and in showcases. The light strip has low energy consumption and works with low voltage. Go online to find out more about how LED lighting can be used at retail.

Next year, GlobalShop moves back to Las Vegas. Besides finding interesting resources, the show's speaker line-up is outstanding. In fact, sometimes it's hard to find time to visit the booths in between the informative seminars. It's a three-day show and you'll need every day to cover it all. The SNEWS® MerchandisingHUB (www.snewsnet.com/merchandising) will let you know when it's time for free registration.

Sharon Leicham is the creator of The MerchandisingHUB, the author of "Merchandising Your Way to Success" and "How to Sell to Women" and is a regular columnist for SNEWS® writing on merchandising and marketing topics. You can access all of her columns by going to www.snewsnet.com/merchandising, where you will find tons of information targeted at the needs of the independent specialty retailer. You can email us with questions and comments at merchandising@snewsnet.com.

For more retail training support and know-how, be sure to check out the SNEWS® Business 101 tools and stories, including our 10-part Retail Merchandising Training series produced by SNEWS®, including a useful online calculator for performing the most common retail merchandising calculations -- free to All Access Subscribers.

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