Creating Flexible & Exciting Seasonal Displays

Posted in Trends Written by Chris Schotsman

There are two types of shoppers — those who love grocery shopping and those that do it only because they have to eat. Neither really understands the other, but one thing they do have in common is an appreciation for fun and festive displays.

Retail stores are notorious for putting out Halloween merchandise in August and Christmas displays in October (or even earlier!). This makes sense in some regard because retailers rely on this “holiday creep” to lengthen the selling season, give early-bird shoppers a head start and maximize their profits.

But it’s a lot different for grocery and other food retailers, which is why it’s so important for them to have flexibility in their displays (along with a box of garlands and other ornaments to use in their merchandising). Grocers can lure shoppers into their stores by having seasonal items on sale (think “Super Bowl Sunday”) and entice them to buy with mouth-watering and eye-catching displays.

Holiday displays evoke strong emotions

When you’re planning your holiday displays, think about your shoppers. They’re more emotional about holiday spending and are more likely to “splurge” on items they normally wouldn’t buy, which is good for business and your bottom line.

Display seasonal merchandise front and center in your store — using modular, flexible displays such as our nesting tables, mobile shelving and plug-in refrigerated cases — to make it easy for your customers to find what they’re looking for. Seasonal spot merchandising displays “interrupt” the customer from their normal shopping routine, which creates interest, gives customers a sense of adventure and drives sales.

Use cross-merchandising to maximize sales

Cross-merchandising has long been a key factor when it comes to maximizing sales. A great example of this is how Winn-Dixie uses its full-service meat case. Customers have the option to choose their protein and add pre-cut vegetables to make a delicious, easy meal for the family. This same idea can be used to create holiday-themed meals.

Cross-merchandising options aren’t limited to food items — you can sell produce alongside decor items (like the pumpkins and mums in this gorgeous fall display below) or consider putting relevant, non-food items in your displays too (think school supplies with back-to-school snacks).

By upselling your customers through cross-merchandising, you increase basket size while making it easy for your customers to get the things they need to relax and entertain their family and friends during the holidays and other significant events.

At Cayuga Displays, we have a variety of products that are perfectly suited to cross-merchandising opportunities, and we have plenty of ideas too — feel free to contact us and pick our brains! (Or check out our catalog here.)


Fresh departments offer seasonal opportunities

Having flexible display cases in your fresh food departments makes it easy to showcase seasonal offerings.

  • For New Year’s, it’s all about meat, seafood, bakery and snacks. Put plenty of pre-cut veggies and platters in a self-serve display to make it easy for customers to get what they need
  • When Valentine’s Day rolls around, use nesting tables to display your beautiful florals (don’t forget to add boxes of chocolate to the display!). The tables allow for flexibility and let you shift from low volume to high volume with ease.
  • Along with chocolate bunnies and jelly beans, Easter is also a time to showcase florals (lilies and hydrangea are popular choices) as well as baked goods, produce, meat and seafood.
  • Thanksgiving is the time for turkey and all the trimmings. Use nesting tables or market bins to put the stuffing bread by the celery and onions.
  • Christmas is when people pull out all the stops. Use a variety of flexible displays to showcase decadent baked goods, poinsettias, meats and deli.

Take advantage of all seasonal events

There are plenty of opportunities to encourage seasonal buying without relying solely on traditional holidays.

Displays can be built around cultural, religious and ethnic traditions that influence your customers’ food choices too, like Cinco de Mayo. It’s a fun way to celebrate other cultures and introduce people to exciting new food offerings.

Try having a picnic day, where you showcase all the items traditionally put in a picnic basket — including wine and non-food items like napkins and disposable cutlery.

Or maybe create a display around “Taco Tuesday.” People love to celebrate with food, whatever the occasion, so be creative and have a little fun!

Build market share without excessive spending

Adding seasonal decor to your displays is a cost-effective way to build market share. If you have flexible display units (like the ones made at Cayuga Displays) it’s fairly easy to dress them up with garlands, balloons or other merchandise from your store.

Think outside of the box for ways to entice customers to your store. If you have a bakery, why not offer kids in costume a free cookie on Halloween or ask them to post their carved pumpkins on your social media page?

Having fun activities for kids is a great way to get mom and dad to come to your store.

Flexibility is key

Having flexible display options will make your store displays more exciting, dynamic and inspired. They make it easy for customers to find what they’re looking for and make it easy for employees to set up.

If you’re looking for new ways to create seasonal displays for your store, browse the website for some inspiration or book a consultation with us. We’re always coming up with new merchandising ideas and are happy to help.

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