The Changing Face Of Pole Displays
Can color and mounting options maximize your pole display sales?
Pole displays, despite some dire predictions in the early 1990s, have not disappeared, notes Sarah Ahmadinia, vice president and COO for EMAX International Inc. (Santa Fe Springs, CA). The privately held company manufactures point of sale (POS) terminals and peripherals, including pole displays. "The use of pole displays is increasing in various markets, including government, healthcare, and manufacturing," says Ahmadinia.
In fact, pole displays, also called customer displays, are being used for in-store advertising. As a result, end users are looking for displays with color. "We've had more requests for colored housing, such as red, and for colored face plates, such as amber," says Ahmadinia. One store Ahmadinia visited, the Limbo Lounge, had its POS terminals and pole displays covered in leopard-print material. "It was definitely eye-catching and coordinated with the store's décor." Ahmadinia points out that an attention-getting POS terminal draws attention to merchandise for sale on the counter, an added bonus for retailers.
Are industry standards affecting pole displays? "There is not a strong demand for OPOS-compliant pole displays, although we've had a few inquiries about it," says Ahmadinia. OPOS (object linking and embedding for point of sale) is a software code standard that, in essence, enables any OPOS-compliant software and hardware to interface.
Tips On Choosing Pole Displays
Whether it's Wal-Mart or the neighborhood grocery store, how can VARs increase their pole display sales? For Ahmadinia, service and pole display reliability are key.
"A few years ago, many low-priced, low-quality displays flooded the market and drove prices down," Ahmadinia says. "Many end users were stuck with failed displays without warranties or available service. Today, these same end users ask about warranties and service. Will the manufacturer be there if there is a problem?" VARs are also more cautious, notes Ahmadinia. "VARs are asking the manufacturers and distributors more questions about pole display features."
VARs should consider the following when choosing pole displays, says Ahmadinia. These features include:
- product warranty
- compatibility with existing hardware, software, and open systems
- flexibility (color, mounting options, and interfaces)
- product and manufacturer reputation
- customization availability
- post sale support
With all the pole display options and features available, such as size, mounts, and color, customer comfort is still an important factor. "Don't underestimate what the store customers need," advises Ahmadinia. "They want to see what they are paying, so customers look to pole displays for that information."
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