Career in Visual Merchandising

Visual Merchandising is all about presenting the image, merchandise, philosophy and overall personality of the store to its customers. It aims to attract customers and maximise sales by presenting objects in a striking and appealing way. It is the art of presentation which puts the merchandise in focus, thereby educating the customers, creating their desires and finally augmenting the selling process.

Visual Merchandising acts as an integral part of a store and gives it a competitive edge over other establishments dealing in the same or similar products or services. Visual Merchandiser creatively juggles with science and art of suggestive selling through display and presentation style.

Aptitude :

Visual Merchandisers are the ones who conceptualise, design and implement window and in – store displays for both online shoppers and retail stores. They combine their artistic skills with technical knowledge on how to set up displays that can catch attention and appeal to the senses of their target customers.

The work of a Visual Merchandiser includes the designing of ideas for displays which is done in consultation with the managers of the stores. They plan the store theme, arrange props for displays, arrange display fixtures and lighting, set up the stores before opening, work with floor plans and store requirements and train personnels on the sales floor to create displays.

It is the job of the Visual Merchandiser only where one needs to organise merchandising units. He is also supposed to create visual merchandising packs to send to stores so that they can stay consistent with the company brand and image. The responsibility for giving feedback to the head office and the buying teams also lie on the shoulders of Visual Merchandiser. As a Visual Merchandiser, one needs to work for 37 to 40 hours a week. One has to frequendy create themes for the store and its display, specially during the festivals and special occasions to maintain freshness and an element of surprise.

One needs to work creatively, improvising and experimenting to create dramatic effects without compromising on the functionality of the store or the visibility or accessibility of the products. The different sections in a same store require different ambience and moods. Clever and adequate lighting used by Visual Merchandisers helps to create a special mood and highlight certain areas.

In the course of the day, one has to interact with floor managers, marketing manager, sales staff and even customers for valuable feedback on trends, styles, layout and displays and get a first hand feel of how customers are responding to the store and products. While putting up the displays, one has to be on toes to lift, carry and displace the things whenever necessary.

Visual Merchandiser must ensure that at all times, the things are well – maintained and in place. Good IT skills are an added advantage for Visual Merchandiser. One has to learn to be a part of team and should be confident enough to complete the work to deadlines.

Eligibility for Visual Merchandising :

Applicants need to complete 10+2 in any stream to get admission in Visual Merchandising course. One should also have an eye for designing coupled with aesthetic sense and great imagination. A Bachelor’s degree in Visual or Fashion Merchandising can be an asset to build a solid platform for this career. An applicant should have flair towards intermingling creativity and technology.

Visual Merchandisers may have a background in design or retail. A working knowledge of consumer psychology gives a better insight into the work. Retailing experience can also help in understanding how the retailing business operates. Knowledge of fashion and art / design industry trends and forecasts can help one to be a good Visual Merchandiser.

Remuneration :

One can start as a member in the sales staff and should also take responsibility for the displays in particular sector. In the initial stage, he can earn around Rupee 5,000 a month, which can increase with the experience. The floor manager can earn up to Rupee 10,000 – 12,000 in the beginning. If one has a background in retail or fashion designing, one can start out with a much higher package at malls or top retail stores.

Freelance Visual Merchandising is another option where one can earn sitting at home. This allows the flexibility to choose the assignments on one’s own choice. Promotions to the managerial positions of greater responsibilities helps to take a hefty amount to your home.

Prospects :

The concept of Visual Merchandising is in a state of infancy in India, but its future outlook is excellent. In the coming years, the jobs for Visual Merchandisers are expected to increase with zooming size. With the increase in the number of shopping malls, five star hotels, boutiques, discotheques and retail outlets, the demand for Visual Merchandiser is certainly going to take a big leap.

Big companies like Shopper’s Stop, Westside, Lifestyle, Ebony, Titan, Pantaloon, Wills Sports, Mango, etc., provide ample job opportunities. There is also an emerging and exciting opportunity for Visual Merchandisers in online retail space. Specialists are needed in Internet, credit card penetration and electronic payment processing. All this calls for adapting the fundamentals of retail design and display to the medium of the web with its unique idiom, consumer behaviour and technologies.

Online retailing requires trained professionals who can straddle both web design and Visual Merchandising. Theme – based Merchandisers are also in great demand for organising parties, weddings, birthdays and other special occasions like Christmas, Diwali, Valentine’s Day, etc.

With the retailers realising the positive impact of ‘display’, which can invite grand customer traffic in – stores and ultimately on their bottom lines, skilled Visual Merchandisers are more sought after now – a – days.

Study Centres :

Application
& Admission
Cycle*
Application Packet
Submission
Deadline
GD & PI Call
Notification
GD & PI Process
Period
Call Letter
Dispatch Date
Student
Acceptance &
Term-I Fee Deposit
Deadline
128th Feb 201210th Mar 201216th Apr-5th May 201211th May 201225th May 2012
230th April 201210th May 201215th June- 5th July 201210th July 201221st July 2012

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