Help your practice make a better first impression with creative ideas for lighting, décor and more
Just as the right eyewear can improve your patients’ vision and appearance, creative window displays have the power to give your office a whole new look. Here are eight ways to help your windows generate traffic and spark sales.
1. Got glare? You can build the best display in the world; it’ll be a shame if no one can see it. So first, go outside and look at the window from several angles and even across the street. Address glare with sheets of anti-reflective film you can adhere yourself.
2. The right light. Properly lighting your window is an art, and it can be a costly and labor-intensive aspect of window design. Rewiring the electrical system, installing adjustable accent lighting and investing in colored gel filters are nice luxuries to think about, but challenging expenses to justify. For convenient, less expensive upgrades, consider lights powered by batteries or the sun — and anything with LED bulbs. Your staff will thank you if you can rig up a system with a single on/off switch. Spot-check for distracting shadows, and keep cords safe and inconspicuous.
3. Work the angles. Think about whether most potential clients will see your window on foot or from their cars. An office with little to no foot traffic should focus on a large display visible from the street that is well-lit in the evening. For pedestrians, your display can afford more details and smaller props, including more frames on display.
4. Best backdrops. Whether you hang items from the top of the window frame, or pile eyewear on a shelf, your décor can become visually lost if your busy practice creates distraction in the background. The addition of a backdrop can help displays really pop. For an easy and cheap solution, try a tension-mounted curtain rod and one or more sheets of fabric or paper. Panel curtains, when hemmed, can serve this purpose nicely; see the Lilleröd design available at Ikea.
5. Divine decals. Once your backdrop is in place, consider removable vinyl decals for your windows. Keep them on the edges of the window to augment, rather than distract from, the rest of your display. Online retailers (including whatisblik.com and allposters.com) have an enormous selection, or you can find customizable decals via designers on etsy.com.
6. Create your masterpiece. The time has come to fill your window with eyewear, props, accessories and other décor. Don’t forget to calculate the actual depth you have to work with. Shallow depths of 2 to 8 inches may feel limiting, so concentrate on creating a vertical landscape and really filling the window. With greater depth comes more opportunity for layering and creating visual depth. When possible, raise frames to eye level with your foot traffic.
7. (P)inspiration. Window merchandising pros display a limited number of products and build creative, inspiring, and bold shapes and movement around those items. If you need inspiration, Pinterest.com is a great starting place — and don’t limit your searches to optical businesses. The clothing store Anthropologie is well-known for its elaborate displays using everyday and recycled materials.
8. Timing is everything. Consider creating a new display a minimum of four times per year, anticipating the next season by a month or so. Window themes can be simple, reflecting spring, summer, fall and winter. They can be product specific, or they can highlight an exclusive brand, or you can even link them to a category you want to promote: sports protection, pediatric eyewear, sunglasses and the like. You could even choose a handful of frames in the same color, and build a display to highlight and contrast that hue.
Work the angles to earn more attention
Choose a cool backdrop