How to Transform Retail Gondola Shelves into Complete Merchandising Display

How to Transform Retail Gondola Shelves into Complete Merchandising Display

Independent retailers looking to start a new project, many things are required to open a store - one of the most critical items in your store fixtures. In particular, the gondola shelves that will display your merchandise. While it's easy to purchase shelving that will fill up your gondola shelving units, we want to educate retailers to change their way of thinking. Don't just think, "I need retail gondola shelves for my store." Instead, we want you to think, "how do I get my shelves to perform like a complete merchandise display."

These concepts become vital in today's retail environment, with brick & mortar stores fighting not an only online competition but also a pandemic. Here is a welcoming statistic all retailers should be excited about; according to a National Retail Federation study, retail sales growth in 2021 is expected to exceed over $4.33 Trillion. That's anywhere from 6.5% to 8.2% growth from 2020 as vaccine rollouts expand throughout the United States.

In this article, for retailers looking to increase in-store revenue, we will help you discover all the different gondola accessories available to help you transform your shelving unit into complete merchandising displays that entice impulse sales.

Utilize Steel Front Lips or Fencing by Tilting your Shelves

Most standard retail gondola shelves allow retailers the flexibility to tilt the shelf. For example, the shelving provided by Handy Store Fixtures can tilt at a 15-degree angle from the uprights. This allows for increased maximum product visibility as consumers walk down the aisles of your store. Naturally, when you tilt a gondola shelf, you will require some front fencing or lip to prevent your merchandise from sliding down onto the ground.

1" steel front lips are a great inexpensive solution for merchandising because they are made from the same steel as the gondola shelf and can be painted the same color. They are available in any shelf width. If you're looking to display boxes or various other small items, tilting your shelves by adding a front lip is an ideal display.

Add Accessories like Open End Baskets

When discussing merchandising, it's important to ask yourself which retail displays work the most effectively for the items being sold in your store. Many retailers face the reality that some products are best displayed on either shelves or perforated board hooks. Fortunately, open end baskets provide another display option. These chrome baskets feature dividers and easily sit on your gondola shelves, helping retailers create a complete merchandising unit.


According to a recent study in Retail Dive, 62% of consumers surveyed say they choose to buy from a physical store location because they want to "see, touch, feel and try out" merchandise. This concept is especially true for those who serve the pet supply industry. Instead of being forced to display in boxes on the floor of your store, open end baskets on gondola shelving units allow consumers to select various pet toys and bones to bring home to their furry best friends.

Instantly Improve the Look of your Shelving with Shelf Covers

If you're looking for an immediate way to improve the quality of your shelves? Three words; shelf replacement decks. After all, what good is a merchandising display if your customers will ignore it? These "covers" go on top of your existing shelves and instantly transform the look of the display.

There have been many publications written regarding color psychology in retail and how it appeals to consumers. For example, if the existing shelves are white, it will amaze you what adding some color can do for your store. Handy Store Fixtures provides many different color options which can be viewed directly on our website.

Light Up your Shelves

If you're looking to accessorize your gondola shelves, few items make more of an impact in the eyes of your customers than LED lights. LED lighting creates a positive effect on the customer perception of your store. Over the last few years, as the technology has become more readily available, LED lights have become an affordable option for independent retailers looking to ensure their store fixtures stand out. It can help focus the customer's attention on specific product areas or a specialty product section that retailers want to highlight.

If your business is operating under tight budgeting restrictions, LED shelving lights can be very effective on highly profitable merchandise or select impulse items featured on end cap displays. You can start small, then decide to fill in the rest of your store with lights if you believe the investment has positively affected revenue.

These are just some ideas independent retailers can implement when developing strategies to increase sales. Frequently, a standard gondola shelf can transform into something much more if you utilize these accessories. If you would like to learn more about merchandising solutions, please contact a Handy Store Fixtures store designer today.

Steve Di Orio

Steve Di Orio


Steve has been with Handy Store Fixtures for over 15 years. After becoming the Marketing Manager in 2006, he was named Director of Marketing. Steven earned his MBA from Montclair State University with a specialization in Digital Marketing in 2019. When not at work, he loves to travel, play golf, exercise, and talk all things search engine marketing and retail display tips.