English for visual merchandising

    Business Spotlight 1/2017
    Ein Kunde guckt Hosen im Geschäft. Je attraktiver eine Ware präsentiert wird, desto eher wird sie gekauft.
    © Bloomberg/Getty Images
    Von Karen Richardson

    Picture your favourite fashion retail outletEinzelhandelsgeschäftretail outlet, or any other clothes shop in your town. What do you see: a cleverly lit window display, the latest clothes collection in this season’s colours, the sales rackVerkaufsständersales rack with price reductions marked in red?

    When you go into the shop, do you have to walk round or past display (sth.)Auslage; etw. auslegen, präsentierendisplay tables upon which items are carefully folded according to colour and size, with the smallest always at the top of the pile? Are the changing roomUmkleide(kabine)changing rooms towards the back of the store with their curtains all pushed back to one side and is the cash deskKassentischcash desk positioned off to one side?

    If you want to buy a shirt, will you find it in all available colours on the same rack? Are all the hangerKleiderbügelhangers facing the same way? Do the sizes increase — starting with small on the left and extra large on the right? Are there any other items nearby, or even on the same rack, that you could combine with the shirt to make a complete outfit? Can these items be seen on one of the shop mannequinSchaufensterpuppemannequins, with the clothes placed one over the other in a technique known as “layering”? Can you find accessoryAccessoireaccessories such as a scarfSchalscarf, a bag, a tie or a necklaceHalskettenecklace? Can you see these outfit combinations anywhere else in the store: on posters, on video screens or in customer magazines? Do you ever go into the shop to buy one item and come out with more than you had planned to buy?

    The reason for all this is visual merchandising (VM)verkaufsfördernde Warenpräsentationvisual merchandising (VM), a silentstill; hier: auf das Unterbewusstsein abzielendsilent selling technique that helps to increase returnErtrag, Renditereturns per square metre of shop floorVerkaufsflächeshop floor. It also aims to reduce marketing budgets. The look of a franchise or partner shop is not individual, but dictated by the company’s head officeZentralehead office, which sends out regular instructions stating how each outlet, or point of saleVerkaufsstellepoint of sale, should be designed and the outfits displayed. This results in the stores having the same image and it’s the reason why shoppers know that they are in, for example, an Esprit, Jack Wolfskin or Street One store — even if they haven’t noticed the name of the shop as they entered.
    Visual merchandising involves developing floor plans that divide the shops into zones, as well as designing colour-coded, three-dimensional displays, in order to maximize salesUmsatzsales and improve the customer’s shopping experience. It is the art of displaying itemArtikelitems in an orderly fashion to subtlyauf subtile Weise, unmerklichsubtly encourage the customer to buy more than they had planned.

    Useful vocabulary

    Expand your vocabulary with these visual merchandising and clothing terms. Select a word to see its translation and add those words that you want to learn to your vocabulary list.

    Clothes idioms and expressions

    • to be out of pocketknapp bei Kasse seinto be out of pocket

    • to buckle down to sth.sich hinter eine Aufgabe klemmento buckle down to sth.

    • to come apart at the seamsaus den Fugen geratento come apart at the seams

    • to fill sb.'s shoesan jmds. Stelle tretento fill sb.'s shoes 

    • to get the bootgefeuert werdento get the boot

    • to line one's own pocketsin die eigene Tasche wirtschaftento line one's own pockets

    • one-size fits-allUniversalkonzept (ifml.)one-size-fits-all

    • to put oneself in sb.'s shoessich in jmdn. hineinversetzento put oneself in sb.'s shoes

    • to roll up one's sleevesdie Ärmel hochkrempelnroll up one's sleeves

    • to tighten one's beltden Gürtel enger schnallento tighten one's belt

    • to wear several hatsmehrere Funktionen bekleidento wear several hats


    In the Shop

    • cash deskKassentisch (UK)cash desk

    • cash register(Laden-)Kassecash register

    • chain storeFilialgeschäft, Kettenladenchain store

    • changing/fitting roomUmkleide(kabine)changing/fitting room

    • clothes rackKleiderständerclothes rack

    • curtainVorhangcurtain

    • entranceEingang(stür)entrance

    • mirrorSpiegelmirror

    • partnership storeFranchise-Ladenpartnership store

    • point of saleVerkaufsstellepoint of sale

    • retail outletEinzelhandelsgeschäftretail outlet

    • sales assistantVerkäufer(in)sales assistant

    • sales/shop floorVerkaufsflächesales/shop floor

    • till(Laden-)Kassetill


    Merchandising essentials

    • collectionKollektioncollection 

    • customer cardKundenkartecustomer card 

    • goodsWare(n)goods 

    • hangerKleiderbügelhanger 

    • in stockvorrätig, auf Lagerin stock 

    • itemArtikelitem 

    • loyalty pointTreuepunktloyalty point 

    • merchandise(Handels-)Waremerchandise

    • orderBestellungorder

    • out of stocknicht (mehr) auf Lagerout of stock

    • price reductionPreisnachlassprice reduction 

    • price tagPreisetikettprice tag 

    • sales rackVerkaufsständersales rack 

    • seasonal wearsaisonale Bekleidungseasonal wear 

    • size(Konfektions-)Größesize 

    • staff discountMitarbeiterrabattstaff discount 

    • stockWaren-,Lagerbestandstock


    Visual merchandising (VM) terms

    • add-on salesZusatzverkäufeadd-on sales 

    • balanceSymmetrie (in der Anordnung der Waren)balance 

    • customer magazineKundenzeitschriftcustomer magazine

    • display standVerkaufsständerdisplay stand 

    • display windowSchaufensterdisplay window 

    • floor planEinrichtungsplanfloor plan

    • focus pointSchwerpunktfocus point 

    • to fold sth.etw. falten, zusammenlegento fold sth.

    • to hang sth. upetw. aufhängento hang sth. up

    • layeringKombinieren mehrerer Kleidungsstücke übereinanderlayering

    • mannequinSchaufensterpuppemannequin

    • merchandisingVermarktung, Verkaufsförderungmerchandising 

    • monthly previewMonatsvorschaumonthly preview 

    • orderReihenfolgeorder

    • pileStapelpile

    • sizingGrößensortierungsizing

    • turnover of itemsWarenumschlagturnover of items 

    • window displaySchaufensterauslage, -dekorationwindow display 


    Shopping the look

    • basicselementare Kleidungsstückebasics

    • business clothesGeschäftskleidungbusiness clothes 

    • casuallässig-legere Freizeitkleidungcasual

    • complete outfitkomplette Ausstattungcomplete outfit

    • contemporaryzeitgemäß, moderncontemporary

    • floral patternBlumenmusterfloral pattern 

    • immediately wearablesofort tragbarimmediately wearable 

    • layersZwiebellooklayers (look) 

    • limited itemlimitierter Artikellimited item 

    • smart casuallässig-elegante Freizeitkleidungsmart casual 

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