‘Live’ Displays Advocated For Dealers
Morristown, NJ How are small kitchen/bath retailers going to
hold their own against the big box stores?
One way, according to showroom experts and merchandising
consultants, is to offer consumers a different kind of kitchen and
bath shopping experience than the big boys.
For example, industry experts point out, more and more of the
chains are looking at bigger showroom areas with expensive
innovations such as interactive kiosks which use computer
technology to “walk” shoppers through a number of basic choices to
fit their needs. In contrast, those same experts say, a possible
option for the little guy is to go to a smaller “hands-on” type of
retail environment with “live” displays.
“Give consumers the chance to actually cook a meal, or show them
how easily various countertop materials clean up after use, or
offer them a chance to don swimsuits and enjoy a relaxing soak or
body spray,” suggests Morristown, NJ-based kitchen/bath industry
marketing consultant Ed Pell.
“This is also an excellent chance to sell add-ons such as water
filters and purifiers, hot water dispensers, storage aids, towel
warmers, disposers, compactors, and similar products,” Pell says,
noting that these “live” showrooms can also be tied into special
events, such as a visit by a guest chef or an aromatherapy
According to Pell, the sales pitch in these cases parallels the
logic: “You wouldn’t buy a car without test-driving it, would
A word of caution for dealers taking this approach, however: It
means fewer displays, but more frequent replacements and more
investment in showroom maintenance will be needed, Pell says.