Customers love free samples. We can all think of times when we’ve gone into a store, whether it’s one of the big wholesale clubs or a small mom-and-pop owned bakery, that we’ve stopped to check out the samples and helped ourselves to the free goodies that were being offered. From a business standpoint, samples help encourage customers to make impulse purchases of an item they’ve just tasted. It also makes them aware of the newest food items that are being carried and are now available for purchase. In my opinion, a store that offers small food samples also feels more congenial, that they want their customers inside to be happy and be aware of all of the things they can offer them. russian food store So even if I’m not helping myself to one of the samples, I feel more comfortable in the store knowing that they’re out there for everyone.
Of course, if you’re going to display samples then you need the appropriate dishware and stands with which to do so. Yes, you could use an average kitchen plate, but what if you don’t have space on the counter to display the plate? Or what if the counter’s out of the way and you want to set up your samples in a location where customers can easily see them? How about wanting to keep your foods protected from exposure and possible wandering hands that can’t resist the call of the sample tray? These are all factors to consider when deciding how best to display your edible samples.
Even the simplest plate or tray can be enhanced to really make your sample food displays pop and get noticed by customers. There are tools out there called display risers that are designed to go on a counter or table top and elevate your trays. The risers come in a variety of different designs and heights. You also have a selection of materials to choose from, such as ABS plastic, acrylic, or even solid steel. For a subtle look, choose a riser that raises your plate up just one or two inches. If you’re looking to create a display that’s got a bit more impact and is harder for your customers to miss, a higher elevation riser is a great way to make sure your samples are directly in their eye line.
The one disadvantage to using risers as a sample display platform is that they don’t provide any additional protection for your samples. Unless the tray that you’re showcasing on the riser comes with a lid, there’s a chance your food will be exposed to the open air. That’s where covered trays come in. If you choose to go with this option you may possibly lose the elevation factor that the risers provide, but they’re able to keep your food clearly on display while still providing additional protection from any contaminants that might be floating around in the air. A quick look at any online or department store will give you an idea of the variety of covered trays that are out there. The shapes are plentiful: round, square, rectangular, oval, and even octagonal. The variety of shapes lend themselves well towards showcasing many different food samples. Baked goods may work better on a flatter, square tray, while some less messy items, such as wrapped candies, would be well displayed in a rounder bowl. Some may have small pedestal bases, like a cake display, while others may have a compartment built into the base where you can add ice to keep fruit or cheese samples crisp and fresh.
One of the most important factors of these covered trays is access to the tray itself. Of course, it’s great that your samples are staying well protected, but any effect they may have would be nullified if the customers can’t easily access the samples. So, when you start deciding which sample tray would be best for you and your business, check to make sure the lids provide easy access to the goods inside. Just like with the trays, there are plenty of different lid types out there as well. Some of the covers that go on round trays can be twisted by the handle to reveal an opening in the tray without having to pull off the entire top. Other designs feature hinges and flaps that allow a customer to easily lift the door up and help themselves to the samples. And there’s always the classic lift up tray cover that everyone is familiar with.