July 2004
Situational Displays By Bridget White

Putting together a display of multiple small items can be tricky, both because you don’t want the area to become cluttered and also because potential customers might overlook these smaller items. The latter is especially true when it comes to non-typical garden center products such as gourmet foods or personal care products. Customers do not expect to see them at a garden center, and unless a display grabs their attention, they might walk right by while looking for plants or sprinklers.

Over the past few months, I’ve seen two similar displays that effectively merchandised small items in a whimsical way that immediately identified the product. Bachman’s, Minneapolis, Minn., uses bathroom fixtures such as sinks and bathtubs to showcase personal care products, and Myrtle Creek, Fallbrook, Calif., uses a full kitchen to house their gourmet food items. Both of these situational displays immediately identified the product being sold, even from distances of 50 feet or more, and added style and sophistication to the garden center.

A display such as Myrtle Creek’s with sink, cabinets, counters and shelves would require a substantial investment, but picking up a bathtub from a resale shop is pretty easy and inexpensive. However much you invest in this display project will depend on your budget, carpentry skills and space, but a little or a lot will go a long way with situational displays.

Bridget White

Brdget White is editorial director of LGR.