Another speaker I had the chance to hear while attending the NSGA Conference was Herb Sorensen, author of “Inside the Mind of the Shopper”. While Stahls’ doesn’t own any retail shops, I do have a background in retail (I used to own 4 retail jewelry stores) and I am always interested in the way people make their buying decisions. At first I didn’t think I would learn anything new, but I quickly became fascinated with the facts, figures and interpretations on shopping behaviors that Herb had to share. One thing that really struck me was the result of a study done on the size of your product offering. In the study, they set up two sample displays in a supermarket. One display offered customers 24 different types of jam to try. The other display offered customers only six different types of jam. There was virtually no difference in the number of people each display attracted. A large array of products is just as attractive to shoppers as the smaller display. However, what was markedly different was the percentage of shoppers who made a purchase after sampling. At the display that only offered six jam flavors, 30% of the shoppers made a purchase. What do you think the sales were at the display with 24 jams? Only 3%! It seems a large array of options may discourage consumers from buying because it forces an increase in the effort that goes into the decision making process. So instead of deciding, buyers decide not to decide! This is important food for thought for all of us, especially because in the world of heat printing there are so many options and so many different ways to decorate garments. Speaking of NSGA, they sent me this photo that was taken after the Hall of Fame ceremony, with fellow inductees Jim Baugh of Wilson and Tom Raynor of Fleet Feet. I am so thankful to the NSGA Hall of Fame nominating committee for this honor.