5 tips to boost online and in-store promotions

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Do you know where to use POP or POS displays? Learn how to use customer data and engagement techniques to amplify promotions and increase your store’s revenue.

Are you using point-of-sale (POS) and point-of-sale (POP) marketing to your advantage? Both increase your sales and brand awareness. But POS and POP displays also support online upselling, cross-selling, and brand recognition.

Explore the differences between POS and POP, then use these tips to make your in-store displays work.

What is POP?

Point of purchase, or POP, is part of the buyer’s journey where shoppers are considering a purchase but haven’t yet reached your store’s checkout line. Business owners use POP marketing, such as eye-catching seasonal displays or interactive digital displays, to educate consumers about a product’s benefits or showcase a great deal.

For example, your seasonal shipper might highlight specialty items that are perfect for the upcoming holidays. In your store, you place these items at eye level in a convenient and accessible location with eye-catching signage. Point-of-sale displays include end-of-aisle features and product bins.

What is POS?

At the point of sale, or POS, your customers are ready to buy. They stand in your queue and are more likely to pick up impulsive or extra items.

Many people are familiar with the point-of-sale systems, software, and hardware that business owners use to conduct transactions. But at the point of sale, you also have incredible opportunities to increase customer spend.

POS marketing, like POP, relies on attractive, easy-to-reach displays. But, your POS items can be at your checkout or strategically placed in floor units near the cash register.

POP vs. POS: what’s the difference?

The main difference between POP and POS is in the purchase process of your customers. POP marketing refers to a phase where customers have not yet purchased a product. They may be looking for deals on shipping or coupons to lower the price. Or they may need more information about how the product will help them or improve their life.

Once your customer decides to buy a product, they move on to the point of sale stage. Here they pay for the products and get a receipt. When customers are lining up to make a purchase, you can use point-of-sale displays to increase your total sales or add information to your ticket that encourages a repeat purchase in exchange for something.

For example, many retailers are taking advantage of point-of-sale features to put a website link or quick response (QR) code on a receipt, so consumers can get a coupon for reviewing, registering to a loyalty program or share their email address.

5 tips and tricks to effectively use a POP and POS

All POP and POS displays benefit from uncrowded spaces with easy access, lower prices and visually appealing signs. Depending on your storefront, you can use counter, free-standing or floor-standing bins, or end-of-aisle displays.

Yet your POS and POP marketing efforts do more than drive sales. They improve the shopping experience while increasing repeat and online purchases. Use your cloud POS software and these techniques to amplify your promotions with creative displays.

1. Use customer data to optimize POP and POS displays

Effective marketing combines new promotions and displays surrounded by complimentary items. So how often do customers buy from your store? And what products do shoppers buy together? Knowing the answers to these two questions helps you implement an effective sales strategy and design successful displays.

Start by reviewing reports from your POS system. For example, a Lightspeed POS system offers a “common common purchases report”. Run this report to find out which items people typically buy together from your store.

Grocers excel at this technique because they target specific shoppers based on what they are buying. A floor-to-ceiling display with pre-filled balloons in the birthday card aisle is suitable for customers picking up a quick gift before attending a party. However, shoppers who buy cake mixes find hanging displays with unfilled balloons, birthday candles and do-it-yourself cake decorations.

POS report showing the average number of days between sales.

Update POP views based on how often your customers visit your store. Image source: author

Point of sale reporting features also give you customer statistics. Run reports to see how often a returning customer visits your store. This tells you how often to change your point of sale displays and promotions.

2. Provide an interactive experience

Whether it’s snatching up a coupon in the store aisle or trying on a lipstick swatch, people appreciate trying before they buy. Getting consumers to interact with your products or staff increases engagement levels and the likelihood of purchasing or returning to your store.

Many large companies do this well by offering free samples, placing mirrors next to sunglasses displays, or encouraging sales teams to suggestively sell related items next to a dressing room or sample area.

Other ways to create immersive in-store experiences with POP or POS displays include:

  • Make screens ready to shoot: Design perfect panels or backgrounds for Instagram photo opportunities. Don’t forget to add a branded hashtag and encourage shoppers to tag your store in their photos.
  • Add digital information centers: Help shoppers get a great deal, find similar items, or watch your product in action simply by scanning a barcode on your mobile unit.
  • Enchant the five senses: Create displays that encourage interaction and provide a full experience using sound, sight, smell, touch and taste.
  • Offer mobile coupons in store. Use customer data to suggest products using a smartphone app because “49% of shoppers made impulse purchases after receiving a personalized recommendation,” according to a Segment survey.

3. Apply POP marketing concepts to increase repeat visits

Bringing customers back to your store is the key to profitability. And your POP displays encourage repeat visits, with 62% of shoppers saying “they would be more likely to look for a product advertised at the point of sale on a future visit,” according to a Popspots survey.

Chart showing statistics for a Popspots report titled

Shoppers say POP and POS displays influence buying decisions. Image source: author

Consider a promotion plan that begins with creative in-store product presentation. Follow it up with a coupon or POP ad that encourages customers to visit your store and make a purchase.

Your customers already know the item because they remember your unique display. Now you’re giving buyers a second look and an incentive to buy.

4. Leverage digital screens to improve online sales

Digital displays are a great way to delight customers when they’re in your store, but interactive visuals also support your digital marketing activities.

A study conducted by Neuro-Insight for Ocean Outdoor finds that digital outdoor advertising (DOOH) “primes the brain to react more strongly when the same content is viewed online.” Additionally, “full-motion DOOH is 2.5 times more impactful than static out-of-home (OOH) sites.”

So what kind of digital screens are getting the most attention? Think content that drives brand awareness online, like viral TikTok videos showing five ways to wear the same sweater or how to use an eyebrow pencil to transform your work look for a night out.

Take advantage of digital displays by connecting them to your point-of-sale software. This allows you to quickly make changes based on store inventory data or time of day.

5. Create displays to match POP promotions

Do you offer a discount for purchases over a certain amount? Add POP or POS signage near the checkout area so shoppers can quickly grab a few items to increase their order total.

Bath & Body Works tweaks this tip nicely. The company places small baskets of hand sanitizers or lotions on the counter. So when your total is insufficient for a discount, you don’t have to search the store. Just pick up a few items at the counter and get your discount.

For this to be effective, look at your point of sale data to discover your average total purchase. Then create a promotion that is a few dollars more than the current order total. Place a display next to the counter. Program a pop-up message in your POS terminal to remind your sales team to encourage customers to enter an additional item for additional savings.

POP vs. POS: use both to improve the customer experience

POS and POP merchandising tactics increase revenue while supporting your customer journey. Design engaging displays using compelling customer data, engagement techniques, and imagery to build brand awareness and drive repeat visits.

About Renee Williams

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