‘The retail market is evolving faster than the tuatara’. I accept that the statement sounds a bit abrupt and the one with no link in between. But looking at the changing trends, the retail market is undoubtedly bringing new ways in its business with every passing day.
If we see around a decade back, the online market required some physical efforts in order to get the attention. However, with time the operations changed drastically, resulting in an entirely new form of merchandising.
How visual merchandising stepped in?
Visual merchandising has its roots somewhere in the 19th century when the dry goods pioneer like Marshall Field & Co. entered the retail market and started to display the store’s merchandise. However, by the time we reached the 21st century, visual merchandising evolved as aesthetic science.
Visual merchandising in a matter of moments became an invincible part of the retail business. The reason behind it getting this attention is the subsequent increase in the returns per square feet and reduced employee mix. Digital signage and images are now an inevitable part of the industry.
Visual merchandising in mobile application
‘The World is going online’, the phrase opens up almost all the doors of your brain to allow everything without exception that connects to same; starting from the past, followed by present, till you reach visual merchandising’s future in the mobile retail market. Monitoring the role that mobile apps are playing in the retail business, you understand the need to present this ‘visual experience’ in the best possible way. Visual merchandising also plays a vital role in upcoming mobile app trends.
A recent study claims that the retail mobile commerce has increased from $ 41.71 Billion in 2013 to more than $ 115 Billion in 2016. Not only this, expectations say that keeping the same pace, in the coming four years it’ll be more than double-crossing $ 330 billion marks.
The study reveals the growth in the mobile retail market and also proves that this isn’t a bubble, instead, is going towards new benchmarks. People today prefer to sit on their couches and surf through the products and services they wish to have instead of visiting the traditional brick and mortar.
While everyone is heading towards the shore, to grab the shells, it has been seen only a few manage to execute it properly. If you are part of the latter, or you feel that you can reap more from it, here are some tips to help you execute effective visual merchandising in mobile app:
1. Your target audience
Walking long over the boulevard to success, without focusing the target audience rightly, is indeed a difficult task. When it’s about retail marketing, the target audience is broad yet easy to aim. Your online store needs the visual appearance (of various forms) intended to attract the target audience. So, before you plan the interface and design, ensure it connects with your audience and your brand mutually.
2. The Photographs
With high-resolution photographs of the product you can create a better impression in front of the buyers. According to a report, 75% of app users shared quality images of the product as a major aspect they notice while shopping online. The same report also talks about around 66% buyers preferring to have an alternate view and 61% buyers like to zoom-in for a closer look.
3. Model shots
Give that live touch to your users, which make them understand your product better. Adding model shots help users to understand the exact size of the product. Accordingly to a report shared by practicology, in comparison to flats and mannequins, women’s wear model shots get 5-20% better response. I accept that the same can cost you somewhat extra, but this isn’t an expense instead is an investment you are doing.
4. Using more than one photo
Never ever confine your buyers with product photos. Allow them to explore the product through various pictures. Your buyers cannot physically touch your product and hence they have the feel little insecure and confused regarding the product’s looks. Take pictures from all possible angles and share them after evaluating the same from buyer’s perspective.
5. Creating product videos
This is the next level to attract the buyers. Taking the statement ‘I like what I see’ one step further, it’s often noticed that adding a short video of a product can make buyers understand it better. Google’s retail industry director, Todd Pollak says ‘approximately 34% of buyers buy the product after seeing the video’. With the help of videos, a buyer can have a better experience of the product. They can learn the inside and out about the looks and features of the product and subsequently order the product.
The term consistency here talks about the pictures you post on your app store. Ensure consistency in the size, lighting, and spacing of your pictures. Inconsistent posts won’t just make it difficult for the buyers to surf, but will also leave a negative impact on them. The background for pictures should be same (recommended use of white for a better view), while the quality of images should be good. Users have shared that the use quality images impacts their decision highly. And why not, with this your buyers can see the product and judge the looks and its quality in a better way.
7. Share special features
Buyers can’t physically touch and feel the product, thus you need to highlight the special features of your product. Give them a sketch that allows them to understand the product well. For the same, you can add photos of your product in all available colors, you can highlight the features by pointing them to the picture, and you can also give them a sneak inside your product.
8. Describe the description briefly
People do wish to understand your product to make the purchase, but in order to crack it you don’t have to publish an essay and shower all your creativity. Keep your product description short and specific, no buyer has that much of time to spend in reading, they benefit having a number of options available in the online app world. Here making a short paragraph, or preferably a bullet point can be favorable for you. Give your audience highlights about the product in order to judge the things better.
9. Be creative
Though last in our list, but it is very important. While running with the visual merchandising, you should be creative enough to grab the audience’s attention. When I say ‘be creative’, it includes your design, content, pictures, and everything that is visible on your mobile application. You also need to take care that the design theme you are using not only looks good but also fits all kind of devices. A little distraction or inconvenience can irritate your users, subsequently making them leave without buying anything.
With technological advancements, retail trade has become more competitive. In order to survive and grow in it, you need to make wise decisions. Always remember that the online mobile app presence is your first impression and by scaling the way you present yourself there, you can succeed in creating the presence for a longer duration. It is the visual merchandiser’s responsibility to ensure that he/she ensure a better presence to win the hearts of buyers and helps the company to attain its goals.