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5 Promotion Ideas for Retail Stores

Written by

Pier Kuipers


December 1, 2022



In-store promotions can be very impactful. Let’s look at the best promotion ideas for retail stores.

Every year, the high street seems to face different challenges. The pandemic, changing technologies, online shopping and the cost of living have meant that stores are having to work harder than ever over the last few years to stay afloat. 

One way brick and mortar stores can tackle difficulties is through innovative and impactful promotions. 

It’s important to think about what physical sellers can offer their customers that online counterparts cannot, such as service, accessibility, customer relationships and staff knowledge. Let’s look at the role these play as the best promotion ideas for retail stores. 

What makes a great promotion?

Like any other kind of form of marketing, in-store promotions are all about putting the right message to the right customers. When it comes to doing this in-store, this boils down to four factors:

  1. Product - the product’s features, brand, specifications and USP
  2. Price - how much the product costs in comparison to competitors or alternative products
  3. Place - what online and in-store channels are used to communicate the promotion?
  4. Promotion - what is the nature of the promotion itself? Will there be conditions, for example multi-buy deals?

All effective retail promotions should take these factors into consideration.

5 core promotion ideas for retail stores

When it comes to promoting your products in stores, there’s a huge opportunity to be creative.

1. In-Store Merchandising

The way you arrange and display your products is at the core of any promotion. At a very basic level, this can mean placing your promotional items in prominent locations around the store, so that customers can find them.

There are a number of ways to do this, depending on the price of the product. For instance:

  • Placing low value everyday items near the checkouts,
  • Placing low value accessories near higher value related products,
  • Placing promotional items close to the front of the store.

Of course, there are plenty of in-store marketing techniques you can use to draw attention to your offers and techniques. For example, POS materials such as shelf talkers, display units and other signage.

2. Staff

When it comes to outdoing your online competitors, your staff are your secret weapon. Customers often find it difficult to figure out which product is right for their needs. A well-informed staff member can overcome this.

When your staff have a strong knowledge of current offers and promotions, they can identify and seize upselling and cross-selling opportunities while dealing with customers. That way the customer feels like they’ve got a good deal, and you boost awareness of your promotions, gaining new sales. 

Additionally, it’s best if your staff know your promotional products inside out.

For one thing, if your customers are attracted by your promotional merchandising, they might still be unready to make a purchase. For example, they might have concerns about the durability, quality or features of the specific product.

As such, when you run an in-store promotion, it’s vital to send out key information to colleagues ahead of time, so that they can answer these queries. Luckily, with a strong product information management system, this entire process can be automated.

Friendly and knowledgeable staff are crucial to the success of your promotions. 

3. Window Displays

Of course, the above strategies only work if your customers are already in your store. But how do you use your promotions to get people through the door? Window displays are one of the levers you can pull.

This can take a number of different forms.

For certain products, simply displaying pricing information in a prominent location in the window will be enough to attract customers. However, this generally only applies to lower value items.

For higher value items, you’ll likely need more sophisticated window displays, using colour, lighting and positioning to showcase your products.

These days, many retailers choose to use digital displays in their windows. On the one hand, this projects a sleek and professional brand image to potential customers.

Digital displays also allow you to maximise the use of window space, while cutting out the expense of printing new window stickers and signs. This makes it cheaper and easier to implement new promotion ideas for retail stores.

4. Curbside Displays

Curbside displays are another effective strategy for bringing new customers into your shop. This is a particularly effective strategy if you don’t have a lot of window space, or if you’re located off a main street.

As with any other promotional material, the key to curbside signage is offering a strong and consistent brand image.

Along with this, you need to communicate your offer in a compelling and visually appealing way, as well as selling the product itself. To achieve this, you’ll need strong imagery relating to the product.

An effective digital asset management system makes this much easier.

With the right DAM solution, you can give your in-store teams the ability to quickly and easily create brand-compliant signage, using approved templates, media assets and branded visuals.

That way, each local team can create the exact right curbside displays to suit their particular offers and local environment.

5. In-Store Events

In-store events are some of the strongest retail promotions, but they also require a lot of work. You might choose to hold an event to celebrate:

  • A new product launch,
  • A store opening,
  • A seasonal holiday,
  • A clearance sale,
  • Other major selling opportunities.

This is a great strategy, because you’re effectively convincing large volumes of people to visit your shop in order to take advantage of a particular promotion. However, this takes a lot of preparation.

Specifically, there are two key challenges to running a successful in-store event:

  1. Creating awareness ahead of time,
  2. Planning and executing the event itself.

For both activities, you’ll need a wide range of marketing materials, such as leaflets, shelving, displays, social ads, email marketing, and other online and in-store promotional materials.

As ever, it’s crucial that you maintain the same standards of quality, branding and consistency across all of these materials, in order to effectively promote and run your in-store event.

So there you have it, some 5 promotion ideas for your retail store, to stay ahead of competitors and face challenges. 

At Visual ID, we are experts at running in-store promotions. If you’re unsure of how to execute your promotion ideas for retail stores, speak to our team today to find out more about our retail marketing toolkit and services.


At Visual ID, we are experts at running in-store promotions. If you’re unsure of how to execute your promotion ideas for retail stores, speak to our team today to find out more about our retail marketing toolkit and services.

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Pier Kuipers

Pier started out working in the world of advertising and graphic design in Dublin in 1986. After watching technology progress throughout the 80s and 90s, he co-founded Visual ID in 1999. Now, as Chief Technology Officer, Pier works with the tech team that looks after the bits and bytes that power our awesome online tools and make our Toolkits tick. In his spare time he walks, reads, and sometimes writes (although he refuses to drink tea), or can be found among friends playing a few tunes on his uilleann pipes.

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