In today’s competitive retail environment, having the right fixtures in your retail store is of utmost importance. The apt look and feel, by deploying the right fixtures, can transform a retail space into a pleasurable shopping environment.
It is important to get in touch with the right people, in order to accommodate more merchandise by using the store space to its maximum efficiency. We got in touch with a few fixture/rack/display manufacturers like GV Display Solutions Pvt. Ltd, Glue Design Pvt. Ltd, GH Graphics Pvt Ltd and Electrospark to understand how things work in this retail space.
The variety being churned out
All kinds of fixtures are being made, which include wood fixtures, metal fixtures, and plastic fixtures etc. At times, MDF (medium density fibre) is also used for manufacturing fixtures. Shreesh Sharma, Executive Director, GV Display Solutions Pvt. Ltd affirms, “We cater to two segments. Firstly, we supply super market racks for retail outlets implying heavy duty racks, storage racks and retail fixtures for FMCG and apparel industry. Secondly, we make display stands for FMCG Companies like Coca Cola, Lays etc. The latter mainly comprises small segment stores.”
When it comes to sourcing the raw material, it is observed that it is being done both locally and from abroad. Though the latter’s contribution is not equivalent to the former. Gagan Gandhi, GH Graphics Pvt Ltd, comments, “We mainly source from the local market which is pan-India. However, we also source from China and Taiwan.” Sharma adds, “We source from India itself but for raw materials, we do look towards China.”
Where’s the demand coming from?
The demand for retail fixtures comes from all sorts of retailers. For GV Display Solutions, the prominent ones remain to be Electronics, FMCG and wholesale retailers. Whereas, for Gandhi, the main categories include food and beverage (liquor like Chivas), FMCG (like Coca Cola, Pepsi, cosmetics, health drinks etc) and eye wear category (opticals). Apart from these, demands for small volume of fixtures keep coming in, off and on, from various other sectors, in the retail industry.
Pricing it right
There is a wide pricing bracket for fixtures in our country, which ranges from Rs 20 and runs into lakhs of rupees depending on the demand that is being catered to by the manufacturer. It is always matched with the kind of product manufactured. Sharma affirms, “The range, we offer is from Rs 1400 per sq. ft to Rs 3000 per sq. ft.” Whereas, Gandhi shares the figure to be Rs 25/30 going upto Rs 75000-80000, per fixture.”
For a retailer a fixture is as important as the merchandise. Therefore, while ordering for the fixtures a retailer must consider some important factors, after all, the fixtures will ultimately be installed in his/her retail outlet, which is supposed to be exclusive and attract footfall and promote sales.
The logo of the company engraved on the fixture aids branding at the store. Gandhi says, “The message of the company should be sent across while working on the design and ordering for the fixtures.” However, Sharma suggests to look for quality, good pricing, easy accessibility and above all servicing. He avers, “We offer servicing pan India, which includes both at the time of installation and post the installation.”
Fixtures ought to be custom-made, to make them better serve their purpose. Sharma comments, “Majority of the fixtures are custom-made according to the needs of the retailers.” Gandhi leaves no room for doubt by confirming, “We only make customised products.”
Niladri Mukherjee, Founder and CEO, Glue Design Pvt. Ltd comments, “Depending on the clients’ requirements, we customise the design, which can be either a cheaper version or a more quality-centric product.”
During our interaction with the solution providers/manufacturers, we came across some out-of –the-ordinary issues faced by these manufacturers, while serving the retail industry. Sharma makes an interesting point by mentioning the issue of ‘slow payments,’ which his company faces in this business. He sees it as a major hurdle to the overall functioning and growth of the industry. The second issue that is quite prevalent in the industry as per Sharma is that retailers have started importing fixtures from China. However, Gandhi shares, “The main challenge is to satisfy the client and there are times when they want to visit the factory too.” But regarding the payment concern, he does not hold the same opinion and says that we take 50 per cent advance payment for all our orders. Mukherjee opines, “Challenge arises wherein competitors copy the design in minimum period, and that least attention is given to the fixtures in kirana shops.”
The relative offering
Manufacturers are also catering to international clients as per international standards. Though manufacturers shy away from disclosing details about their international clients, they do reveal that they are doing business with them. Gandhi says, “We have the desired machinery and infrastructure to live up to the international standards and designs.” Sharma, comments, “We do export to international players. They have a manual that they share with us and are very specific about their designs etc. We are happy with the payments too.”
The implementation and deployment of fixtures are mostly taken care of by the manufacturers. Sharma opines, “We take pictures in case we are not physically visiting the stores.” Gandhi adds, “Our team goes to the location, fixes it and takes photographs too. And, this is done at a pan India level and not just at regional level.”