Modern Merchandising | State Library of New South Wales

Modern merchandising

Throughout the 20th century consumption beyond basic needs boomed, and modern marketing
techniques emerged to turn luxuries into necessities. Retailers are always in search of new products, constantly arranging and rearranging floor space to show them off, planning promotions for them, and devising new methods to get people to buy them.

Trade journals, sales manuals and newspapers were filled with advice about how this could be achieved using modern retail methods. Shopkeepers were encouraged to make their stock easier for customers to buy. Enticingly arranged glass-fronted cabinets and more open shop interiors were made possible by innovations in building technology, particularly steel framing, concrete and improved lighting.

However, for the increasing numbers of suburban and country consumers, advertisements in newspapers, magazines, and on radio and television rapidly replaced the shop window as a means of attracting custom.