Editor’s note: Rajeev Sharma is the Founder and CEO of VideoMining. This is an edited version of an article that originally appeared under the title “Responding to Shrinking Center Store (Part 2): Rethink Displays.”

With the accelerating migration to online sales, there is an opportunity for retailers and manufacturers to collaborate and reinvent the physical store. In this article, we explore how secondary displays could serve as a strategic tool to make up for the inevitable erosion in center store traffic.

Today, secondary displays are largely used by brands as a tactical tool to gain category share, especially in combination with price promotions. Retailers see displays as a way to bring in incremental sales and trade marketing dollars. Significant inefficiencies exist in both display practices and execution without precise in-store measurement and analytics. With changing in-store shopping patterns and evolving store formats, there is an urgent need to reimagine display strategies and to optimize display performance using shopper insights.

1. Increase center store traffic

Our data has shown that displays can have a significant impact in influencing shoppers to visit the center store aisle – sometimes adding more value by driving traffic than from direct sales off displays. This signpost effect can be valuable as it invites shoppers to re-experience shelf interactions when making decisions. With potential innovations in center store merchandising, displays can become a valuable partner in attracting consumers to reconsider the experience of in-store shopping.

2. Impulse decisions still exist in slow traffic

Impulse sales from secondary displays – end caps, in-aisle shippers and perimeter displays – can be quite significant; with displays contributing as much as 70% of total sales for some categories in a given promotional week. With the evolution of store formats, there are a l...