What's point of purchase (POP)?
Point of purchase, or POP, is where a consumer encounters your product in a retail environment and makes a decision to buy it.
“POP has always been a supportive part of the buying experience. POP displays are a cradle in the background allowing the product to shine in the foreground. Good POP displays support the brand through graphics, text, and the overall design. Point of purchase displays help convey a feeling to consumers that the brand is not out there alone (unlike products on peghooks or on store shelves next to other similar products). This lends additional impact to the brand message. It’s a handholding experience for the brand and the buyer.” – Rob, Creative Lead
What is point of sale?
Point of sale is checkout: the place where a retail transaction is completed. Effective POP displays take your customer from browsing to bringing your product to the point of sale and purchasing your product. Some POP displays flank the checkout to encourage impulse-buying.
Where are POP displays used?
Point of purchase displays are used nearly everywhere people can go to shop for and buy products, from malls to wholesale and retail stores. POP displays increase sales and enhance the buying experience in many different retail environments.
Retail environments where POP displays are used range from Ma-‘n-Pa shops to Best Buys. Mainstream retailers like Nordstrom’s and Macy’s typically don’t use point of purchase displays, as their product isn’t packaged, but POP displays are common sales drivers in many places you wouldn’t think of, such as doctors’ offices and college bookstores.
Why use POP displays?
Effective point of purchase displays increase retail sales of products, which benefits both retailers and consumer product companies.
Creative custom displays can also convey brand messages and product attributes, facilitating informed buying decisions for consumers and connection with brands that suit their lifestyles and values.
What are the most common types of POP displays?
Tabletop displays, countertop displays, wall-mounted displays and floor displays (and combinations of these allowing greater versatility), trade show booths, gravity-fed point of purchase displays and LCD displays (these can have lighting and sound effects where budget allows) are among the most common types of point of purchase displays. POP displays appear in various forms to suit different products and budgets and to increase retail sales in different environments.
Custom point of purchase displays in particular vary considerably in that they are designed to showcase products. All POP displays separate products on display from their shelved competitors, but a custom POP display focuses consumer attention on your product. Therefore, custom point of purchase displays exist in as many different forms as there are products being displayed and sold, and yours is guaranteed a unique look – potentially incorporating elements of your product and package design, illustrating your product’s attributes and uses, conveying your brand identity, reinforcing your marketing messaging and integrating graphics, social media campaigns, #hashtags, etc. – giving rise to rich consumer experiences surrounding your product as well as increased sales.
Which businesses benefit from using POP displays?
Consumer product companies, or final goods producers, benefit from using POP displays to sell their product above the competition and build brand awareness. Secondly retailers enjoy greater profits as POP displays generate additional sales.
When did POP displays first appear?
Shopper marketing has been evolving for a long time and POP displays have been part of sales success since 1913 or thereabouts. About a century ago, some of the first point of purchase displays sold Lifesavers candies. Brach’s followed suit with creative candy displays (drums, barrels, and glass counters) responsible for many a sweet tooth among those who grew up during the 1930s, ‘40s and ‘50s. During the 1960s and after, branding and brand recognition became more important; large and small companies alike began using POP displays to build brand awareness and outsell the competition. Today’s household name brands represent some of the earliest companies using POP displays to increase sales, gain loyal consumers and launch their products. For example, Parker pens celebrated new products and special editions with help from creative custom POP displays; Parker’s “Hopalong Cassidy” countertop display (circa 1950) sold Parker’s first ballpoint pen.
“POP displays have been around as long as retail. In the early days they were mostly temporary displays such as cardboard displays that held toys. Pioneers in the pen and candy and watch businesses helped shift POP displays toward more permanent materials. In the 1960s and 1970s, collective understanding of point of purchase, point of sale, and shopper marketing matured such that by the mid-‘80s, words like lifestyle graphics and value engineering were in play.” – Will, Sales & Creative
Can a small business benefit from using POP displays?
Yes. Small businesses stand especially to benefit from the additional sales and brand promotion opportunities of custom POP displays. POP is a preferred venue for businesses to gain an edge over their competitors and establish a loyal consumer base.
“POP displays also offset retail conditions that small businesses often have little to no control over. While you cannot influence retailers’ visual merchandising decisions, you can encourage consumer engagement with your products through the use of custom POP displays. A great point of purchase display creates positive shopping experiences for your buyers in the same way Apple store locations draw Apple fans both for the potential to purchase products they want, and for the experience of being in the Apple store. The Apple store features a patently customer-experience-oriented design – as does any good custom POP display.” – Dave, Sales & Production
Can small business owners afford custom POP displays?
Small businesses that do under 1 million might find it challenging but not impossible to afford POP displays. We have been very successful with smaller companies and startups helping them gain ground in the competitive marketplace. A way for small companies to offset POP costs is to share them with their customers through a “buy in” program.
Is Point a “full-service” POP display company?
Yes; Point Display and Design handles all aspects of POP design, cost estimation, prototyping, production (manufacturing), and fulfillment (shipping) for your custom point of purchase displays. Most other POP display companies outsource design, may only work with one media (i.e. wood or paper), or refuse to deal with production – whereas we offer a one-stop POP buying experience.
In addition, Point offers chat support and free initial design work to potential clients, ongoing education to clients who are interested in learning about shopper marketing and effective POP marketing strategy, and personalized customer service throughout the POP display creation process.
Can my POP displays be reused or recycled?
Yes; Point makes it easy for you to give new life to your old displays. Point works with its fulfillment agents to offer you reuse and recycling services for an additional fee (covers collection/postal return of your displays, dismantling and repurposing of materials at our production facilities).
Where is Point Display and Design located?
Point keeps a small design office for meetings on the North side of Chicago with manufacturing facilities located on the near West and South sides of Chicago as well as in the Chicago suburbs and Wisconsin. Point drop ships all over the country with price advantage of its central location in the Midwest.
How does your design process work?
“We begin the custom display creation process with an information-gathering session for learning your brand and who your target customer is; we go over how much product you would like displayed and get sizing and/or samples of the product. It is also helpful to have your logo and other graphic files. We encourage our clients to begin thinking about a budget before and during the design process… custom fabrication allows us the most flexibility in specifying materials and processes to create the most effective point of purchase display within the constraints of your budget. Within a few days of our first session, our initial POP designs are ready for your review. We then discuss any adjustments you would like made and move into costing and prototyping according to your materials choices and order quantity.” – Rob Swislow – Creative Lead
How long does the POP display creation process usually take?
The POP display creation process occurs in phases and a Point team member will assist you each step of the way. An example of the timeline is as follows:
- design 1-2 weeks (autocad 3D rendered presentations)
- cost estimating 5-7 days
- prototyping 1-3 weeks (building full-scale using actual materials)
- production 4-8 weeks
How do I place an order with you?
After you have approved the budget and signed off on the prototype, we will accept a formal purchase order from your company and payment of the deposit by credit card or check.
Can you add lighting and sound effects to my display?
Yes; we can incorporate lighting and sound effects in your POP displays for a visual and auditory message if the budget allows.
What materials do you use?
Not withstanding wood, metal wire, and sheet metal, various plastics and printed graphics are the primary materials we use to build permanent and semi-permanent displays. When real world materials fall outside the budget, Point has the resources and creativity to substitute materials for others, preserving the integrity of the look and feel you want while keeping to your budget. Visit our Gallery to browse some of the different looks we’ve achieved using these materials.
How is Point different from other POP display designers and manufacturers?
Point designs and engineers from a manufacturer’s point of view – in other words, we call out materials for your design based upon an efficient usage of those raw materials so no or minimal waste occurs. We also design based upon the equipment our factories have in-house. A combination of these two things alone offers the best value engineering in the industry for your point of purchase display needs.
Is there a minimum display order quantity to work with you?
No, but we will advise you in placing an order quantity that gives you the biggest bang for your buck. We are a production-oriented company and as in all forms of manufacturing, setup fees (such as jigs, fixtures, dies, etc.) that may be insignificant over larger runs (250+) can become more costly for smaller runs (50-250).
How long does it take your team to furnish designs?
We provide designs within 1 week. At Point Display we don’t charge for our designs but do retain all rights to produce, build or manufacture them. Once we build a design for you we agree not to offer this same design to another company.
How long does it take to produce the displays?
This depends on a variety of factors but typically it takes 4-8 weeks to produce the displays.
Do you ship internationally?
Yes; we can ship overseas but do not prepare export documents or carrier support as that is provided by the customer.
What forms of payment do you accept?
We accept payment by check and credit card. Credit cards are assessed a standard 3% service fee.
When will I be charged for my order?
We require a 50% deposit at the time you place your order with us and the balance due at the time of shipping.
What is your return and cancellation policy?
All Point Displays are custom designed and manufactured. We guarantee our work 100% however we do not offer returns or cancellations once an order has been placed.
Why type of fulfillment does your company offer?
At Point we provide custom packouts of your display according to your specifications. We can pack in supplemental materials as provided to us. We also offer storage and drop shipping to individual stores.
What are your fulfillment fees?
For fulfillment related to shipping we charge $3.00 per location where you provide the shipping labels; where Point provides shipping labels and fills in online shipping forms, we charge up to $10.00 per store. For custom packouts a time study is necessary to produce a quote for you.