A few years ago, we made some sunglass displays for one of our customers that were placed in this $10 Boutique store in a charming section of downtown Nashville, Tennessee.
The $10 Boutique was located adjacent to another boutique store called Ensemble. Both stores benefitted from the old-world charm and heavy foot traffic of this quaint section of Nashville.
On December 25, Christmas Day, 2020, Anthony Quinn Warner detonated a recreational vehicle bomb in downtown Nashville killing himself, injuring eight people and damaging dozens of buildings in the surrounding area. Unfortunately, the $10 Boutique and Ensemble were among the casualties, and our sunglass displays were never recovered.
Since that time the $10 Boutique has been rebuilt. Our customer ordered replacement sunglass displays. We gave him a discount. Welcome to Part II of our blog series on sunglass displays and designing for merchandising success. If you missed Part I of our series, you can check it out here.
In today’s post we will look at the first 5 of 10 different options for displaying sunglasses along with some of the pros and cons.
- Single Shaped Wire Nosepieces– One common approach is to shape a single piece of wire is a wave pattern that enables the nosepiece of the sunglasses to rest in the low points of the wave pattern. The ear pieces typically sit on horizontal back wires. This approach is generally strong, visually clean, flexible in accommodating a variety of frames, and relatively cost-effective.
- Welded Wire Extensions– Another approach is to individually weld separate nose piece extensions that are attached to the back wire on which the earpieces rest. The nosepiece extensions are formed with a dip to enable the bridge of the nosepiece to rest. This approach is time-tested and cost-effective, but there is a risk of a weld breaking in which case the entire grid panel would need to be replaced.
- Screw-in Nosepieces– We make a number of our stock sunglass displays with the screw-in nosepiece method. This approach starts with an aluminum or steel panel to which we embed threaded bosses and add individual screw-in nosepieces. This approach is a bit higher-end and more expensive, but it helps to increase the perceived value of the glasses, and it is easy to replace individual nosepieces if they get lost or damaged.
- Laser-cut Sheet Metal System– Another very clean approach is to use an all-sheet metal design with laser cut-holes for the ear pieces and laser-cut nosepiece holders. This provides a more upscale look compared to a system constructed of wire, but it also is relatively more expensive because the material costs are higher.
- Locking Columns– As sunglasses increase in value, theft becomes more of a concern. In lieu of building a locking case, it is generally more cost-effective to incorporate locking columns. The columns typically have a spring mechanism that is triggered when the column is unlocked at the bottom, thereby enabling the sunglasses to be removed. While this does help prevent theft, it has two primary downsides: (1) It requires the assistance of a store clerk to unlock the column for a customer who wants to try on a pair of glasses, and (2) Sometimes the keys that come with these columns are made of soft metal and can break off in the lock. We recommend rigorous testing to ensure the keys are strong. Below is a picture of the column mechanism and a unit we manufactured for a Big 5 Sporting Goods rollout.
Be sure to check our Part III of our series on designing for merchandising success in which we will cover 5 more approaches to merchandising sunglass displays.
Jim Hollen is the owner and President of RICH LTD. (www.richltd.com), a 35+ year-old California-based point-of-purchase display, retail store fixture, and merchandising solutions firm which has been named among the Top 50 U.S. POP display companies for 9 consecutive years. A former management consultant with McKinsey & Co. and graduate of Stanford Business School, Jim Hollen has served more than 3000 brands and retailers over more than 20 years and has authored nearly 500 blogs and e-Books on a wide range of topics related to POP displays, store fixtures, and retail merchandising.
Jim has been to China more than 50 times and has worked directly with more than 30 factories in Asia across a broad range of material categories, including metal, wood, acrylic, injection molded and vacuum formed plastic, corrugated, glass, LED lighting, digital media player, and more. Jim Hollen also oversees RICH LTD.’s domestic manufacturing operation and has experience manufacturing, sourcing, and importing from numerous Asian countries as well as Vietnam and Mexico.
His experience working with brands and retailers spans more than 25 industries such as food and beverage, apparel, consumer electronics, cosmetics/beauty, sporting goods, automotive, pet, gifts and souvenirs, toys, wine and spirits, home improvement, jewelry, eyewear, footwear, consumer products, mass market retail, specialty retail, convenience stores, and numerous other product/retailer categories.