If physical visitors seem to be multiplying in your retail locations, it might not be just because of the lifting of the mask mandate. Snow birds are returning from the south, and vacations are beginning for those of us cooped up inside all winter.
How do you capitalize on the vacationers who visit you, the locals who frequent you for their own vacation supplies and the snow birds looking to feather their nests for the summer? Can one strategy work for all of them, or should they each have their own target retail merchandising displays?
If you want to have a one-size-fits-all approach, keep the seasonality out of it. Focus on your product and how it addresses the “pain point” for the general consumer. If you’re selling suntan lotion, for example, display it either within aisles of gondola shelving in a very orderly manner, or in an end cap display that touts the benefits of sunscreen all year long. If you wanted to have a more targeted message, sun screen products can be displayed in bins next to the cash register line, positioned as an impulse item that you don’t want to forget before you go on vacation. Or if you’re going to the beach as one of your stops on your Maryland vacation, don’t forget the sunscreen. Finally, simply remind snow birds that what plays down south has the same tune up north – sun screen is protective.
That was an easy one. How about wines and spirits? The same advice applies. You can go general – displaying in gondola-shelved aisles according to brand and benefit — light, cold, crisp pino grigio wine for spending time with friends before, during or after vacation– or you can combine brands across the market specifically for the target market’s use. An invitation to bring a good wine or a case of beer to your vacation home displayed on a leveled table set with a fun summertime theme (think brown-paper covered picnic tables with crab mallets and checkered napkins) or a “Welcome home” toast for snow birds and those returning from vacation featuring the coziness of a shot of brandy next to the outdoor firepit. If the brandy or whiskey comes in an individual box, build an endcap with a firepit made of boxes.
You can apply any category to these ideas – either target the general consumer with the product’s benefits, or target the specific vacation time frames. Sometimes they are one and the same. For example, your general display of commonly used household or grooming items might be the ideal display for each individual market segment. If these things are not in the same spot every time for the returning snow birds, the frantically packing vacationer and the area visitor, they give up and find a product that is. Evaluate your options and market wisely.