Everyone working in your store… don’t forget this! They all should be trained on your VM principles or at least be aware what the importance of Visual Merchandising is. If you need a dedicated Visual Merchandising supervisor, manager or coordinator (still being confused due different titles doing the same tasks but ok) depends on the size of the store and net profit. However the return on investment (ROI) should be an easy calculation. Anyway there should be someone responsible for VM within the business whether it is the Store manager, Retail manager or the Visual Merchandising Manager.
If you calculated the potential ROI and want to professionalize Visual Merchandising in your retail department than I would recommend 2 different roles which you can look at:
- Visual Merchandiser: responsible for the operational part of creating appealing product displays in the store and shop windows. This role looks after the VM principles in general and is the creative brain of the department.
- Space and/or store planner: responsible for the analytical process and approach of merchandising your store. This role looks after what product should be placed in what volume and in where in the shop. This person identifies hot spots, tracks results with a Space planning tool or software and will work close to the Visual Merchandiser.
From own experience: a professional VM could increase profit from 5%-50% depending on the situation. A 5% increase in a professional high volume attraction doesn’t sound a lot however 5% increase on 1Mio net profit is 50.000.
Imagine the VM department being involved with the product development process will directly increase sales and profit because there will be feedback on: packaging, product size, promotional potentials. So it will be essential to work closely to your buying department as well (if there is a special department).
Visual merchandising should be part of the induction period of every team member!
How do you organize Visual Merchandising in your store?