Two Merchandising Tips for Growth and Success

I’ve been studying a great post that’s chock full of merchandising tips.   Here are my two favorite tips, my must-remember takeaways for merchandizing success.

Many vendors make the mistake of believing their product will sell itself. While it is true that good craftsmanship is important – it is NOT what brings you the bulk of your new customers. Your display… is what you really need to focus on.  Work with this idea in mind and you will be one step ahead of your competition. No one wants to believe that their art is less important than their booth, but that’s how it works…

Even if they don’t buy today; people will remember “experiences”. Something to always be mindful of is that people remember an experience more than they remember a thing or a service.

Christin Sanders

I don’t write much about merchandizing, but as I read Christin Sander‘s post about craft fair strategies I couldn’t help but learn a lot.  Here are two of my favorites.

merchandizing, growth, success

Now that’s memorable!

It’s about the display… and that word can either describe a bricks-and-mortar storefront, a digital storefront, or a even a blog.  Even if you were spending just a weekend in a city the size of London, you’d remember that storefront… I’ll bet you could find your way back.  That’s what we all want… a sliver of our customers’ long term memory.

Then we need to add something that turns a remembered image into a memorable experience.   In bricks and mortar, it might be the smell of fresh baking, or a cheerful greeting.  It might be an offer to handle or taste the merchandize, along with the briefest of helpful information.

It’s a timeless, international lesson that I learned from a continent away.

If you Google Image Search “Hafiz Mustafa” you’ll see a collection of the most wonderful pictures from a sweet shop on Taksim Square in Istanbul.  Here’s one particularly tempting image.

merchandizing, growth, success

Hafiz Mustafa, Ltd. since 1864

During my 4 day stay in Istanbul I ended up visiting Hafiz Mustafa, Ltd. three times.  But it wasn’t just the copious displays of colorful confections that brought me back.

Dazed by jet lag and a morning of wandering Old Istanbul, I needed a pick me up.  A Turkish coffee and a sweet seemed like just the thing.  Inside the wide open double doors I found colorful counters stacked with more kinds of baklava than I’d ever seen.  I asked the busy  counter attendant about one of them.   Instead of answering me he deftly slid a baklava square onto a spatula and handed it to me with a broad, knowing smile.  “Good.  Try some.”

I was instantly hooked by a masterful example of taste-based merchandizing.  I could find my way back to Hafiz Mustafa’s store blindfolded in a blizzard.

Isn’t that what every entrepreneur wants?

These were my top two takeaways from Christin Sanders’ post, sensationally demonstrated by a an English bread store and a 150 year-old sweet shop in Istanbul, Turkey.  But Christin Sander’s article about craft fair vending isn’t just for craft fair vendors.  It’s full of very widely applicable, remarkably practical merchandizing tips for every one of us.




  1. Carol Orris says:

    I think the word “experience” describes the goal any businessperson should have when marketing their business. Using the five senses, we make an impression on our customers memory. Atmosphere, be it online or in person, is everything. I’d like to see some more written on this subject, for physical locations as well as online.

  2. Yes display matters so much. It must be eye catching with shocking colors for me. I cannot revert my gaze from such displays and is compelled to visit them. That little Istanbul visit was wonderful too. Thanks!

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