Today’s blog gives hints and tips for our bridal stockists. If you are a bride, follow these links for blogs on veils, tiaras, jewellery and wedding belts.
Last week we started our series of blogs designed to help you, our stockists, to get ready for the new year with our tips on Shop Windows. Today we talk about making your shop look its best without breaking the bank.
Confetti & Lace Changing Area
There is no point promising the world at the pavement only to disappoint inside, so don’t forget to follow through with the rest of your shop. If you are on a budget, there are plenty of things you can do to make significant improvements without breaking the bank. Here are some ideas:
- Look with a critical eye, ask a family member or friend to give you an honest opinion of your shop. They will come in with fresh eyes and will be able to see things you don’t. Take their advice and act on it.
- Clean and tidy, and add a coat of paint. You will not notice your decor deteriorate over time, but your customers will.
- Wash your windows, sweep old leaves away from your doorstep and pick up any litter from the pavement outside. Add a coat of paint or wash your shop fascias and front door, make sure people can see your sign and understand what you can offer them from the other side of the street.
- Add effective lighting. Lighting is key to making your gowns and accessories stand out, so experiment with spotlights and lamps and open up the windows by removing any blinds or curtains to let daylight in. If you cannot afford new lighting, ensure your current lights have all got working light bulbs in, and that they are all a consistent colour.
- Clean your carpets or floors. Carpet can become dirty quickly, especially around high-traffic areas such as by the door. Clean your carpets with a special vacuum, or you can hire someone to do this for you quite cheaply. Add rugs to areas that are stained or worn, and the effect will be immediate! If you have hard flooring, make sure it is clean and polished, and add rugs to separate areas and create a cosy feel.
- Remove all stock that is out of date, damaged, or just hasn’t sold. This will instantly make the rest of your items look so much better. Similarly, if you or your assistants don’t love your product, you will struggle to sell it, so remove the pieces you aren’t keen on or that don’t complement each other. Remember to make your stock work for you and to choose quality over quantity.
- Use mirrors to make your shop seem more spacious. Put them in strategic places to reflect displays and natural light.
- Rearrange your shop to suit your brides and your selling process. You know how you sell to your brides, so make your shop layout works for you in leading a bride through the process. Have an area for the bride’s friends and family to sit and relax while she is in the fitting room, give them something to look at while they are waiting (e.g. bridesmaids dresses, brochures, or tiaras, jewellery and veils). Give the bride enough space to change into full gowns and to show them off to her friends and mum, adding a rug to act as a catwalk works well.
- If you are unsure if you have everything you need, pretend you are a bride and check that everything is where you would expect to find it and that the fitting rooms are comfortable and big enough with enough hooks and mirrors. Check there are mirrors in the right places on the shop floor when you are trying on gowns and accessories, and you must have one long mirror in which you can see your head and shoes in one glance.
Confetti & Lace gowns
- Look in the places you don’t normally look, for example look above eye level and check that everything is neat and clean and there aren’t any cobwebs lurking in corners. Be picky and look under displays and rails of gowns, in corners and behind chairs. Making sure each detail is perfect will mean the overall appearance of your shop will be vastly improved.
- Line all gowns and veils up neatly, all facing the same way on matching hangers to create a smart, uniform look. You don’t want your customer noticing the hangers, you want them to see the product, so keep them neat and simple.
- Mark your bestsellers and your favourite items with a small coloured ribbon. This means you will be able to identify them from a distance when you are speaking with brides.
- Make sure you and your assistants understand where all of your product is and how each of the pieces go together to create whole outfits. Return each piece back to where it belongs every night before closing, so that you will be able to find it again the next day. Being able to pull out the perfect tiara for a bride after listening to her requirements is an invaluable skill and shouldn’t be hindered by not being able to quickly find what you are looking for.
Do you have any tips to share? Leave them in the comments below!
Next time we will discuss how to ensure your tiaras and jewellery are in tip top condition and beautifully displayed for 2013.