Say “specialty cheese!”

Posted in Specialty Foods Written by Chris Schotsman

##How your cheese display can spark loyalty

For many people, cheese is more than just a food, more than just a slice you throw on a sandwich for added flavour, and more even than the gooey deliciousness that stretches off that first slice of piping hot pizza. For many people, cheese is a complete and intense sensory experience. Place a block of rich specialty cheese in front of someone who’s a true turophile or caseophile or cheesemonger – whatever their preferred label – and their eyes widen, their nose savours the aroma and their mouth begins to water in anticipation of the flavour washing over their taste buds.

This instant reaction is precisely the reason why it’s important to display cheese – especially the specialty cheeses that truly excite cheese lovers – in your store in the most appealing way possible. Speciality cheeses are becoming more popular because they’re a small, affordable luxury that can impress not only their own taste buds, but their cheese-loving guests as well.

Here are a few helpful thoughts we’ve had lately about how you can maximize the display of specialty cheese in your store to help keep your customers coming back for more:

  1. Beat the competition: This is true with any product in any business, but increasingly important when it comes to specialty cheeses. As these cheeses become more and more popular, you can find them in more and more stores, from huge grocery chains to specialty cheese shops. Make sure you carry the types of cheese (and more) that your competition offers, so customers don’t go elsewhere.

  2. Educate the customer: Be the expert. Whether it’s through signage or a friendly customer service associate, tell your customers about the types of cheese you have, how they’re different, how to handle them, and what foods or wines to pair them with.

  3. Display it alongside wine: Like chocolate and peanut butter, wine and cheese is a classic pair, so use one to sell the other. We worked with a wine store and helped them add a cheese kiosk. While they didn’t sell a lot more wine overall, they did sell more bottles at higher price points because they were paired with the cheese.

  4. Make cheese the star: That first glimpse of a block of cheese is what can really trigger that anticipatory sensory reaction in a cheese lover, so show off the cheese as much as possible. The label is often secondary. We’ve had clients successfully display their cheese with the label on the underside, which not only shows off the cheese, but adds to the sensory experience because they have to pick it up and feel the weight and texture in order to read the label.

  5. Think outside the (wine) box: Yes, wine can absolutely help you sell cheese, and vice-versa. But so many other foods pair nicely with cheese as well, so you can include foods like crackers, meats, olives and antipasto in your cheese display.

  6. Samples, samples, samples: What sells food better than the actual experience of eating it? Keep small free samples available in clear view.

So remember, dress your cheese to impress, and customers will keep coming back. At Cayuga Displays, we can work with you to customize the ideal display for your space and your clientele.

By the way, are you wondering what our favourite cheese is? Cayuga blue, of course!

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