Does Visual Merchandising need technology?
Tim Radley, speaking at London’s Retail Design Expo
Olympia, London – Wednesday March 11th – 2pm
It is hard to envisage any aspect of modern business without the influence of technology of one kind or another, and visual merchandising is not immune to this.
VM has embraced technology for many years with planograming technology linked to space allocation and sales performance becoming an intrinsic part of many retailers aiding in the production of guidelines for stores.
This being said it is still a very valid argument that the most important physical room with a retailer, for VM and other disciplines, is the “Mock Shop.” This is a unique place that allows colleagues to stand in front of real product and discuss the relationship between assortment and display.
The danger always is that technology puts people in retail businesses behind desks instead on next to product and in stores. Beware – the worst kind of technology is the one that isolates!!
Remote technology is one area where the problems created by an expanding geographic portfolio can be solved by technology. This technology uses a combination of store cameras and mobile and tablet devices for a variety of store benefits from compliance to education. Staff can be enlightened on new product developments via mobile, trained in essential VM skills via 2-way cameras, whilst VM implementation can be monitored and corrected remotely.
An interesting benefit of remote guidance by centrally located specialists is that stores can be clustered and mentored in a variety of ways but not geography. Stores with similar demographics, locations, size, flagship, convenience and even pop-up can be controlled and guided remotely be experts in that format.
So beware the isolation of technology, whilst the best kind brings embers of the VM team together in innovative, efficient and cost-effective ways.
Come and listen to me speak about how Visual Merchandising has grown and evolved to face the challenges of today’s retail world, the VM toolbox that is required and whether technology is a help or a hindrance.
I am Tim Radley, founder of VM-Unleashed! and I will be speaking at the Retail Design Expo event at Olympia, London on Wednesday 11th March at 2pm.
I look forwards to meeting you there and answering your particular retail and VM questions. Many thanks and see you there.