Point-of-Sale Displays

One of the best investments of your marketing dollars that you can make is in point-of-sale displays. These displays allow you to dramatically increase the impact of your product at the moment it counts most—at purchase time. Such displays are most effective for impulse items or items for which consumers do not have brand loyalty. Large displays set up in prominent locations in high-traffic supermarkets have been shown to increase the rate of sales by as much as 64-fold over the same items sold from their regular shelf locations.


The biggest difficulty in point-of-sale displays is getting retailers to actually use them. Most retail chains in the US are very selective in deciding which products to accept displays for. They often expect the manufacturer to offer cash incentives for the privilege of allowing you to set up a display in their stores. Some store managers of national retail chains will make their own decisions as to what displays they will accommodate on their floors, even if you have an agreement with the national office that is backed by cash incentives and guarantees. Even if you do manage to get display exposure, merchants prefer to keep displays up for short periods of time in order to keep the impression of their merchandise mix fresh and appealing to their consumers.

Shelf talkers

Shelf talkers are signs that appear alongside a given item on the shelf. They can be very effective and, best of all, cost relatively little to produce. They require brief copy that can grab a consumer’s attention.


Posters are the least inspiring point-of-sale display vehicle when used to attract consumers to products they were not previously aware of. But they can be very effective in pulling in customers to purchase a product they have some knowledge of—perhaps through an extensive advertising or publicity campaign.

Counter displays

Counter displays are sometimes called prepacks when the display also serves double duty as a counter item. Merchants generally use counter displays for low-priced items that a consumer might decide to purchase on impulse while they are waiting for sales assistance or standing at the cash register. Small novelty items are ideal for counter displays.

Counter displays need to be attractive. They also need to be conservative in space requirements and height so as not to obstruct the line of vision between the sales clerk and the customer.


Floor displays, commonly referred to as dumps, are most effective if placed at the front of the store. This location guarantees viewing by the maximum number of visiting consumers. This arrangement is the most powerful of all point-of-sale display options.

This type of display is often fabricated out of card stock but it can be very expensive to manufacture. Typically merchants reserve the display of dumps for their top brands and fastest selling promotions.

By Streetwise Small Business Start-Up


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