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Improve Your Sales With 8 Small Hardware Shop Display Ideas

Going up against big box retailers can feel like an uphill battle. But you can level the playing field and drive more foot traffic by focusing on the customer experience and creating some incredible displays.

You know you’ve got great products, competitive retail pricing, and excellent customer experiences. But sales are still lacking. And big box stores have massive warehouses and marketing budgets to match. How can you best display your superior inventory and maximize space?

It’s time to get creative. You can transform underutilized space with eye-catching displays to showcase your newest tools, popular seasonal items, and deals of the week. And that’s just the beginning!

This article highlights eight small hardware store display ideas you can implement on a budget. Creative displays tailored to your unique store will make your products shine, draw customers in, and significantly improve your sales. Let’s maximize your limited space!

Small Hardware Shop Display Ideas That Work

Customers who come into your hardware store probably have a strong idea of what they’re looking for. The last thing you want is for them to roam around your store, not find it, and leave frustrated. If your store layout isn’t helping customers find what they need, what’s the solution?

There’s no need for a complete remodel. Small tweaks to your displays and layout can make a big difference and improve how customers perceive your store. Swap out a few products, change the signage, or add new lighting — the idea is to make your store look organized and easy to navigate.

Related Read: How To Attract Customers to Your Store — 6 Ideas That Really Work

When designing your displays, always keep the customer experience at the forefront. Ask yourself, will this capture their attention? Will it make their shopping trip easier or more enjoyable? Customer-centric displays tailored to their needs will boost engagement. For example, you can showcase snow removal tools front and center in winter or make hard-to-find items more visible.

Be careful not to overcrowd displays. You might have multiple items you want to showcase, but with careful planning, you can maximize your space without overwhelming your customers. A cluttered environment creates a negative shopping experience. Aisles should be easy to navigate, shelves should be clean, and the retail checkout counter should be easy to find.

A clutter-free store with plenty of breathing room and visually balanced displays will put customers at ease. Let’s dive into the subtle yet impactful changes you can make to your hardware shop displays.
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Idea #1: Embrace Themes

A great way to create vibrant displays involves using themes that revolve around seasonal or holiday events. 

For example, you can build a lively summer display featuring bright flowers, gardening tools like shovels and gloves, bags of soil, and stakes for tomatoes and flowers. Use crates or pallets to build levels and add visual intrigue.

Or you might go all out with a festive Christmas display. Think string lights, mini trees, ornament sets, and gift wrap. Influence the purchasing decisions of customers who lack a creative spark by designing their space for them. Themes give you endless options to get creative with colors, props, signage, and product pairings.

Don’t limit yourself to major holidays! Think back to school, football season, or the first day of spring. Quickly swap items in and out to keep your themed displays fresh. The beauty of holidays and seasons is that you don’t need to worry about coming up with themes — you remove some of the overwhelm.

Customers will appreciate the extra effort and hopefully find joy in your displays. Also, instead of just hoping customers notice what’s new, you can showcase products at the right time — think lawn and garden care products right as people start thinking about working in their gardens.

Idea #2: Get Interactive

We all love a bit of interaction! Interactive displays encouraging customers to touch, test out, or build things are a great way to boost engagement.

For example, you could set up a workbench or a demo area where customers can try out tools or assemble small projects. They could test the grip and feel of different hand tools or assemble simple wood projects using your screws, sandpaper, and stains. Allow children to get involved, too!

Getting hands-on with products showcases their quality and craftsmanship. It makes your products more tangible — customers can see themselves using your tools. It builds trust in your merchandise and brand, and it’s fun. Customers will also stay in your store for longer. 

Related Read: 5 Tips for Using Retail Analytics To Supercharge Your Profits

Boost sales by answering questions and highlighting product pairings. For example, have safety glasses and ear protection alongside the power tools. The customer testing a hammer may also be inspired to grab a new tool belt or box of nails.

Idea #3: Consider the Customer Experience

Put yourself in your customers’ shoes. Will they easily find what they need? Can they move around and inspect items quickly? Your goal should be displays that provide an enjoyable, friction-free shopping experience.

Use clear organization, like grouping similar items so customers can browse. It’s a good idea to have little cards attached to shelves that point customers toward complementary items. 

For example, in your paint section, you could have a sign that directs customers to brushes and rollers. Likewise, incorporate signage like “New Arrivals” or directional signs to help customers navigate. Clearly label any bundles or special offers so shoppers understand the value.

Related Read: Top 5 Sales Promotions Ideas for Small Businesses

Proper lighting is great for showcasing merchandise. Use spotlights or directional lighting to illuminate displays. This catches the customer’s eye and helps products stand out. Also, a well-lit space and warm lighting create a more welcoming store.

Idea #4: Try Cross-Merchandising

If your store is more compact, you can try cross-merchandising complementary products in displays. For example, showcase lighting fixtures alongside lightbulbs and wiring accessories. Or bundle together paint, brushes, drop cloths, and trays in a display titled “DIY Painting Kits.”

Putting related products together makes it convenient for customers to purchase what they need and encourages additional purchases, boosting the chance of add-on sales and larger basket sizes. You can provide one-stop shopping without requiring more space.

Other great areas for cross-merchandising are near your entrance and service counters. Place batteries, tape, glue, tools, and other handy accessories near your service counter. When customers come to pay, they might notice these tempting last-minute items and likely throw a few extras into their cart. 

Get creative! Cross-merchandising is an easy win for customer convenience and boosting sales.

Idea #5: Spruce Up Your Window Display

Store windows facing the street are prime real estate for displays. Creating visually striking window displays will attract passersby and pull them into your store. 

Create displays that highlight your most popular products. Or showcase unique products that set you apart from competitors. Window displays let you be creative and build artistic scenes using ladders, paint supplies, and brushes to help people envision tackling their DIY projects.

Lighting and colors are essential here. Colors can evoke emotions. A red “Clearance” sign communicates urgency to shop the deals before they’re gone. Cool blue hues lend a modern and sleek look for high-tech tools.

And those seasonal themes we talked about earlier? Window displays are a great place to highlight eye-catching concepts. Think interactive scenes with snow blowers clearing fake snow. It’s fun to watch and highlights the product.

With a vibrant window display, you can effectively advertise your store and inventory 24/7.

Other Quick Tips for Increasing Sales

Idea #6: When it comes to shelving, consider using adjustable shelves to accommodate different sizes of items. This allows for easy rearrangement as inventory changes. Also, use shelving units with multiple levels to maximize vertical space.

Idea #7: Display racks are ideal for organizing and showcasing smaller items. One option is hanging display racks to save floor space and promote impulse buys. Another option is to use rotating racks, which allow for easy browsing and can hold multiple products.

Idea #8: Lean into visual merchandising. The key to a successful visual merchandising strategy is creating eye-catching displays highlighting popular or new products. Using attractive signage, lighting, and colors, these displays grab customers’ attention and inspire them to explore further.

Small Hardware Shop Display Ideas: Don’t Get Overwhelmed

Remember to start small. Your store is unique; you can choose one or all of these ideas to get started! Don’t try them all at once. Focus on a few impactful changes instead of overhauling everything at once. 

Try implementing one or two new display concepts. Perhaps start with the interactive workbench or a seasonal display. What’s crucial is that you measure the impact of your ideas. Track sales reports to see if they positively influence purchasing, monitor customer reactions, and ask for feedback to gauge what resonates.

Your point of sale (POS) system is essential to analyzing sales patterns and informing which products you decide to display. With data guiding your efforts, you can double down on what works and tweak or eliminate less effective displays.

At POS Nation, we make building effective displays easy. You can lean on sales reports to see what’s popular or which products need a boost. You can print unique barcodes and tags to stay organized, and with our POS software, there are no limits on SKUs.

To see all the ways our POS system can help manage your hardware store, schedule a demo with our hardware experts today!



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Lynn Ellison

“POS Nation saved us about 30% on our credit card processing fees.”

Lynn Ellison, Owner Liquor Stop

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