Stocked and Stacked

Ellen C. Wells
Stocked …
Garden center consultant and Green Profit columnist Judy Sharpton is a big advocate of making the most of the cash wrap and checkout areas. She firmly believes in establishing a “Do You Need?” department in the area’s entrance to aid sales staff all the way from entrance to exit. This is the last spot to grab customers’ attention, so make the most of it.
Judy’s advice for cash wraps is:
  • No more than five products
  • Include gardening-related essentials—fertilizers, small bags of potting soil, small hand tools, such as clippers and trowels
  • “Enticing niceties”—think along the lines of gardeners’ soaps, hats, gloves
  • Switch out the products routinely and be sure they’re seasonally appropriate
  • Think high margin
  • Provide cashiers with a list of the products and remind them to ask “Do You Need?” during each customer ring through

Drink Up

At the cash wraps surrounding registers at Deneweth’s Garden Center in Michigan, sustenance for both humans and plants are in plain sight. A well-placed beverage cooler is a great moneymaker on warm, sunny gardening days.

An Artful Exit
Delhi Flower and Garden Centers in Liberty Township, Ohio, surrounds their checkouts with a pergola, continuing the garden atmosphere throughout the entire shopping experience. The area is also amply supplied with seasonal grab-and-go necessities, such as fertilizers and everything a homeowner would need for lawn care.

Keep It Clean
Organization is key to keeping an uncluttered cash wrap like these at English Gardens in Michigan. Within such an easy reach of adult and kid customers, cash wraps can become messy spots quickly. Have staff members patrolling the area to tidy up on a regular basis, especially during peak hours.

The booth for Living Creations by Alex Schoemaker at the recent IPM Essen Show in Germany contained many structures made from stacked pallets. This waist-high table could easily be replicated in a garden center and used as a temporary checkout counter. The top pallet can be converted into a glass case to highlight photos, garden designs and such. Pallet spaces can also be fitted with drawers to hold sales slips, pens and even hand-held payment scanners.

… and Stacked
Checkouts needn’t be complicated, conveyor-belted contraptions. Depending on the size of your business,
a simple countertop will suffice. Check out these two spotted by Chris Beytes.

The folks at Blumen Gardens, in Sycamore, Illinois, are masters of repurposing. Their indoor checkout area is a perfect example: stacked cinder blocks, with a few on edge to create cubbies. Their logo painted on the front elevates it from brick pile to high style. GP