Best 3 Ways to Sell More of Your Merchandise Now

There’s no doubt – as a community organization, a fitness organization, a health organization, your primary mission is not to be a retailer. There are great benefits, however, to offering relevant products to your members. It’s a secondary revenue stream, it builds your brand, AND it encourages loyalty. Sounds pretty good, right?

3 CONCRETE WAYS YOU CAN SELL MORE MERCHANDISE, STARTING NOW.

1. Turn your club brand into a lifestyle brand.

When you design your merchandise, consider the fact that now more than ever, members understand that fitness habits are more than just an hour on a treadmill. Hobbies and improving skills are more than just a way to kill time. People are integrating and perceiving their health and wellness habits and creative endeavors as part of who they are. The messaging on your merchandise needs to be more than just your logo. It needs to actually send a message.

YMCAs already do this. Also consider items like this Cycologist cycling shirt, arts-themed apparel or a #Fitmom sticker, which stress ownership, identity and humor.

2. Maximize display space.

Bigger is not better when it comes to floor sales in any facility where members are coming to use your services, not shop. But, they obviously can’t buy your products if they’re not displayed. So, here are some tips to display them for maximum engagement:

  • Choose a small, appropriate space that will not eat up your square footage. Stay away from large displays that would affect how your front desk or community space functions. Vertical (versus tabletop) displays are your friends, here.
  • Don’t put everything out at once. Rotate products. Consider theming your months: nutrition, outdoor gear, swimming, apparel, etc. If your products don’t change, members will mentally block out your store space.
  • Set up the display so the most popular and profitable items are at eye level. Choose a thoughtful color scheme to draw the eye, and make sure the display is attractive from all sides.

Whether registering for a class, booking a room, renting pool toys or buying an energy bar, ACTIVE Net’s POS software lets customers make payments anywhere at your facility, all on one transaction.

3. Promote products on social media.

The proof is in the social pudding. People want to have the cool stuff their friends have. To get things rolling, offer some contests and giveaways and photograph your members wearing your stuff. Share it online with catchy, fun captions, encourage said members to share the post, and let the internet do the work for you.

Similarly, if your organization focuses on kids’ programming, make sure you have appropriate gear available. Kids are really proud of their affiliations and accomplishments. If they’re on your swim team, they’ll want to let the world know on their hoodie.

IT’S TIME TO GIVE YOUR MERCHANDISE A ONCE-OVER.

Merchandising is not a get-rich-quick endeavor. Even a major brand like the Girl Scouts made it known a while back that “Girl Scouts can’t live on cookies alone.” Non-profits, especially, should ask these 9 questions when considering merchandising.

But if your brand strategy includes merchandise, make sure your gear is relevant, cool and creates a sense of ownership. Ensure that your display is pulling its weight. And get your images of your inventory in front of customers in creative ways on social media.

Follow these three ideas and we’ll be seeing your gear on the streets in no time.

Gina Calvert

Gina is the Senior Marketing Writer for ACTIVE Network, providing marketing and business resources for active lifestyle organizations across a range of markets, including government, nonprofits, YMCAs, Parks & Recs, camps, schools and endurance events, for almost 7 years.

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