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  • Writer's pictureIan McWilliams

Retailers: Should you bother with 'newness'?

Times are strange!

Who could have predicted what has happened over the last couple of years? Retail decimated by lockdowns on the one hand, then bouncing back with bigger and better sales when shops reopened. It seems right now that we are getting back to some normality and maybe the peaks and the troughs are behind us. Should you be cautious? Or should you add 'newness' to your windows?

Well...does your shop window (your window to the World) attract customers?

Tiffany, window display, merchandising, jewellery, jewelry
Fabulous Tiffany display


I think the above window (courtesy Tiffany's) certainly would make you stop and look as it is new, fresh, different and exciting. However most shops of course want to fill their windows with stock, but what's the point in adding new items?

I always say in sales - visualise how your customer is thinking. As a retailer, what can you do to entice and attract more customers? Have you ever observed people passing by your window who then suddenly stop, turn and look closely at your displays? I expect you have. That's because your window was interesting, not the same old thing day in day out, week in and week out.

This won't mean buying new products every week to 'add newness' of course. It could be rearranging the display, making certain items more prominent, special time limited offers etc.

However, in my view you still need regular newness in your windows. But don't do it all on your own - work with suppliers and brands. Do they have POS that could help? Do they have display ideas that would really stand out? What are other shops doing? How are they attracting customers in? What trends are their in the market place?

Window display, jewellery, retail jewellers, merchandising
Dedicated window display for a brand


Now the above is just generic and not linked to a brand I know, but it gives you the idea how your window could be separated with some nice branded display for the newness you have introduced.

Another thing I note when visiting retailers is the thought that they think they have to put everything in the window because people don't come in and ask for things.

I think that may have been true to a certain extent in the past but increasingly now the 'less is more' approach is what attracts customers - not just to your window but to come inside. Generally, the more expensive pieces you sell, the less you need to display and the more interesting you can make that display.


You also want to create a desire for your products, be aspirational whatever the price points are you offer. You may well be surprised how high those price points could reach! Never under estimate the buying power of your customers!

This is certainly true in the bridal market. Where engagement rings were once just small single stone on a plain band they often now are fancy affairs with diamond set shoulders, diamond set 'hidden' halos and of course the market for big diamonds has exploded! Plus where wedding rings were once just plain bands, now virtually every woman buys a diamond set band and some men are following suit with there own take on diamond jewellery.

Have you got the newness in your window to satisfy this trend?

So in summary: in difficult times 'newness' is a must! However there is no need to just splurge out and buy just because something is new. See the trends, talk to like minded retailers and also search out the independent Sales Agents who have the long term view, who want to work with you, helping you increase your business over the long term and who are not after the 'quick sale'.

Experience, know-how and working in partnership with trusted suppliers is the way forward.

If you think my experience could help your business please get in touch!

Apart from my consultancy side I am an independent sales agent for River Mounts and Greenspark - two well respected companies with customer service at their heart. for sales enquiries for River Mounts and Greenspark.

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