Bricks and Mortar Stores

Has COVID Made Bricks-and-Mortar Stores a Thing of the Past?

Post-pandemic, has the future of bricks-and-mortar stores changed? Will traditional retail rebound, or is the future all online?

In countries all over the world, COVID meant rows of shuttered shops. With months of lockdowns and customers unwilling to venture into a world of coughs and sneezes, many retail stores simply gave up; sold their surplus stock online and died a slow, quiet death. This is reflected here in New Zealand, with empty stores starkly visible in malls and main streets.

The push has been to go online. It is amazing what consumers buy online; from fruit and vegetables through to sportswear, swimsuits, underwear, and furniture. Online retailers have exploited this too, allowing deliver-try-and-return packages for packs of clothing items, and even created guaranteed ten-minute-delivery services for basic household groceries in some countries. Global online retailers met that temporary gap in the COVID-influenced market. But it’s not forever.

But, will traditional retail recover?

If trends overseas are to be believed, retail is here to stay. In the US, retailers have opened more than twice as many outlets as closed last year, and that’s even with the supply chain disruptions and COVID chaos. Somewhat ironically, auto parts retail stores are one of the biggest winners, as people converted to working-from-home or hybrid working models, moved to the suburbs, and purchased vehicles. While footfall for retailers is below pre-pandemic levels, it will rise again.

The time to create safe, inviting, and real-life shops is now. Landlords would rather have discounted rents and someone occupying spaces rather than sitting idle. People (even the introverts) are social creatures, we all need some level of personal interaction. Shopping can help to meet these needs.

There are also certain items that people prefer to buy in person. Fresh fruit and vegetables need to be eyeballed (or, subtly squeezed) to ascertain their quality. Shoes need to be tried on to ensure they fit comfortably. Sports gear needs to be brandished in an appropriate manner—after all, how do you know which bat you can hit a six with, or which racket you can smash an ace with in tennis?

How Can Retailers Get People in Store Again?
  • It’s time to capitalise on ‘shopping local’. People purchased online from overseas when they were locked away; now, they can get out and about and support their community by buying local. The supply chain for NZ-made products can be guaranteed (unlike large fast-fashion brands), customers can see and feel the quality, and they are supporting Kiwi families. Make sure they know it.
  • Differentiate your offering, whether it’s by strengthening a brand, having a regional focus, offering next-level after sales service, or capitalising on history and reputation. What is the purpose of your brand, and should your value proposition change to match an evolving customer?
  • Health and safety measures need to be increased. Many people are suffering a form of PTSD; where someone gets too close while we shop, or coughs, it can make them feel nervous. Having good flow and plenty of space for customers to move around can help to minimise the stress. Also think about:
    • Shopping baskets: No-one wants to touch a basket that some potential carrier pigeon of disease has sweated all over. Have plenty of baskets available, and either offer a sanitising spray, or get staff to wipe down the baskets.
    • No-touch displays: Scan in a QR code or pay without exchanging cash or cards, and display this information clearly. Stands like these card holders make this information prominent and don’t need any touching to access.
    • Cough/ sneeze guards: These make people feel safer, with a physical barrier between employees and customers.
    • Spray bottles: Plenty of spray bottlers with some form of sanitiser can be used by staff or distributed around the store for use by customers.
    • Physical barriers can help form orderly queues and avoid crowding. Also, think about one-way aisles to avoid customers crossing paths, and less inventory and clutter.
  • Have your customers changed? It’s likely they have. There’s definitely more of an environmental focus, with people buying from their neighbourhood stores instead of the trek to a mall, and more of a quest for authentic products Customers are also pushing for more sustainability and ethical options. If they have changed, it’s time you do too.
  • Bridge the online and real-life. QR codes in-store link to an online catalogue where customers can see the full range of colours and styles, or menu. Offer contact-less payments via Apple or Google payment options. A good example of this is Glassons, who have aligned their search functions with the in-store experience.

Store designs are embracing natural materials, with longevity as part of the design. Consider scents that are not overwhelming; Peter Alexander’s fragranced candle scents are immediately recognizable from many shops away. Lemongrass helps to neutralise bad smells and have antibacterial properties, and there are so many options. However, don’t over-do it, as strong or unpleasant scents can cause headaches or be very off-putting.

It’s important to note that some people don’t care. They’ll still go shopping, they won’t wear masks, and their habits won’t have changed. But, your store needs to adapt for those who do care. COVID has changed every aspect of our lives, and retailers need to adjust to make everyone comfortable and happy in their physical stores.

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Make your life easier with trolleys for inventory movement

Trolleys make stock movement more efficient, saving operational costs and time. Depending on the type of goods involved you can use appropriately designed trolleys to further productivity.

Trolleys improve the overall workflow of your retail space by ensuring smooth movement of goods from the stock room to the shelves. Trolleys are useful at the other end of the chain as well, when you receive stock and need to load it into the warehouse or storage area. They reduce the amount of manual labour required for both situations.

Benefits of using trolleys

Save time and increase productivity

Instead of making repeated trips to the stock room, trolleys allow staff to transfer a large volume at a time. This makes stocking up retail shelves that much easier and faster. Smooth stock movement ensures that your shelves are always full and you never lose a sale due to an empty shelf.

Promotes safety at work

Heavy lifting and carrying can result in muscular and skeletal damage, especially over a long period of time. Moving stock manually also poses a trip hazard. Trolleys remove the need for heavy labour, they are designed with ergonomics in mind to make shifting and moving easier for your staff. Equipped with smooth rolling casters, brakes and strong handles, they reduce the risk of accidents. This, in turn, contributes to a safer work environment and reduces absenteeism.

Reduces risk of breakage

In addition to safety for your staff, using trolleys to transport goods cuts down the risk of damage. Packages are loaded safely into sturdy trolleys that hold them securely until the designated unloading section is reached.

Versatile applications

Another big advantage of trolleys is that they are versatile and can hold a wide array of goods. Whether you operate a supermarket or a large warehouse, trolleys are essential for quick and convenient stock movement.  There are even some models that are designed for operation in extreme hot or cold conditions, such as walk in freezers.

They’re a long-term investment

Trolleys improve productivity, reduce breakage and are built to last for years. They are designed to withstand the rigors of everyday use and are made to be corrosion resistant.  Simple designs and sturdy construction make trolleys easy to maintain. The initial investment you make for the appropriate trolleys help you save in the long run.

Choose trolleys that suit your specific needs

Cage trolleys

In addition to a large and deep basket space, a cargo trolley has an additional flat lower shelf that can hold bulk buy bags or boxes. It can securely hold up to 200 kg of inventory. The lower shelf is spring loaded to make it easier to place and remove items. If preferred, the spring feature can be removed to leave just a flat deck. This type of trolley is often called the garden trolley as it can carry bulky products like sacks of potting mix, awkwardly shaped baskets and even planters.

Platform trolleys

Platform trolleys are designed to carry flat packs and boxes. These are ergonomically designed for ease of use and the handle is placed at an optimum height for staff to easily use. It helps make light work of heavy stock transfer tasks.  Smooth castors make movement hassle free. It’s equipped with two fixed castors and two swivel castors to offer the handler better control.

Mills Display bring you the best retail solutions

Smooth functioning in a retail environment requires specialised and sturdy equipment. With years of experience providing for retail spaces, we understand what you need to make everyday chores easier on you and your staff.  Our wide range of trolleys help with efficient stock movement without a hassle.

Mills Display is Kiwi owned and operated, with loads of experience in providing solutions for local retailers. Our strong network of international supply partners and buying power enables us to offer you the best equipment for your business at competitive prices.

Drop by our showroom to see samples of our inventory in person. At Mills Display, we take pride in getting our customers results and have built up a reputation for excellent customer service.  We’re happy to answer any questions you may have or give you a friendly quote. Just drop us a query or call us on 09 634 5962 to speak to our specialist team about what you need for your retail space.


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Create displays that stand out with NeoPegs

Use NeoPegs to turn your retail display into a 3-D work of art. With these versatile and easy to use peg board accessories, you can create a spectacular display for your key products.

There’s no doubt that creative signage and attractive displays draw customers and increase sales. The latest in retail displayware, NeoPegs are a clever and long-lasting solution that helps you raise the bar for visual merchandising. NeoPegs are propriety hardware for retail peg board displays. You can use these clear accessories to build a 3D effect for signage. You can also add shelves, spirals, lighting, backgrounds and more; the possibilities are endless.

How will NeoPegs change my display?

You can create the display of your dreams

Add a new dimension to your display with the NeoPegs range. Clear or white thumb screws, brackets, stand offs, adapter clips and more hold up your banners, branding and marketing material, giving them a 3D effect. This latest in retail tech helps you break out of tired display moulds and create something truly exceptional.

They are easy for anyone to use

NeoPegs are designed to be simple to use and need no special training. These accessories can easily be put up by hand, with hand tools or power tools. You or your staff can set up marketing material, arrange POS products, or information stands. The pegs fit securely into existing slots and can be removed without damaging the peg board. Consider the Neo Peg HX/LP removal tool to make disassembly a breeze. The pegboard accessories can also be kept in place for ongoing use so it saves time and reduces labour by up to 50 percent.

NeoPegs give you endless design options

The NeoPeg range includes clear HX cap, stand off (in 50 mm, 100mm, 150mm, 200mm 300mm lengths), clear brackets and thumb screws, among other accessories. You can use the same accessories to create a number of new and eye-catching display opportunities – from putting up clear banners to 3D Headers and so on. It even supports irregular shapes, twists and turns to draw the eye. Even light effects are not excluded. With continuous use it won’t take you long to notice that you will be cutting down significantly on waste. Novelty in your display is everything and NeoPegs ensures you achieve at a fraction of the usual cost.

They are very cost-effective

These pegs can be used over and over again for different marketing campaigns. The baseline backing can remain in place or be changed as you like. You can layer it up with seasonal elements to suit the occasion. Pegs of different lengths are available to present your POS messaging and marketing in a fresh, unique way each time. This means you don’t have to make more investment each time you want to create an attractive display. With a little imagination, this can be achieved with a few simple accessories.

Mills Display can take your marketing presentation to the next level

Mills Display has built a reputation for providing all retail display and presentation solutions under one roof. We’re a family owned and locally based company that gives you the latest and best local and international products to choose from. This makes us the top choice for product presentation in NZ.

We’re keen on keeping up with developments in the retail display field so we can offer you the best solution for your business. The NeoPeg range is the latest tech in pegboard hardware. They offer you a simple, elegant solution to up your retail display game.

Our team gets our clients results, using our knowledge accrued from years in the industry. Get in touch with us for a friendly discussion on your retail needs or for a quote, we’re just a phone call away on 09 634 5962. You could also drop by our product showroom at 327A Neilson Street, in Penrose to see our display solutions in person.

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Hang Sell Display Solutions

How hang sell display solutions increase sales

Hangsell displays push impulse buys and increase sales, especially in a retail environment. Make your products ‘pop’ with simple hang sell solutions

Hang sell displays are a specialised visual merchandising tool that supermarkets and retailers can take advantage of.  You can use hang sell displays to highlight a product, brand or offer that you want to draw a customer’s attention to. One of the many advantages of hang sell displays is that they don’t require extra room in your store. In fact, these displays can utilise unused space in your store very effectively. They could fill in narrow vertical gaps, bare pillars or tiny spaces between furniture.

Benefits of a hangsell display

Hang sell displays give great brand visibility

A good hang sell display makes a brand and its products come to life. It literally stands out from the other products on the shelf to highlight the special product or offer it holds. It’s aesthetically pleasing and showcases the brand creatively, helping to increase sales.

Portable and customisable

Every brand can create a hang sell display to suit their identity as these are customisable. S-hooks or hang sell fasteners make it easy to put them up on shelves at any point in a retail environment. As they are lightweight and portable, hang sell displays can be moved to new spots in a snap, no tools or ladders required.

Hangsell displays encourage impulse buying

Placing hang sell displays around check-out counters is a tried-tested-and-true method to prompt impulse buying. It grabs your customers’ attention and encourages them to pick up a product as they are waiting in line.

How can you use impulse hang sell solutions to your advantage?

Use hang sells for convenience and accessibility

In short, make products easy to buy with an effective hang sell display. Attractive graphics or pleasing colours are an excellent way to draw the eye of potential customers.  For the same reason, it is important to also position these at eye level.  One of the key advantages of hang sell displays is that the product is simple to take off the display and place in a shopping basket.

A simple, economical visual merchandising display to put together

Hang sell displays should also be simple for you and your staff to use. Solutions like hang sell fasteners make it easy to arrange a product along a hang sell strip or peg hook. Clear adhesive tabs can just be stuck on to the back of a lightweight product. Hang sell fasteners are available to suit a range of different sizes and weights. Fasteners, strips and S-hooks are all readily available and cost-effective so you are not dependent on expensive displays to showcase your products effectively.

Suitable for different products

Versatile solutions like hang sell fasteners, S-hooks and U-strips allow you to use them for a range of different products, from toiletries and makeup to lollies and soup packets. You can position these effectively in relevant spots throughout the store. Hang sells are ideal for temporary offers, seasonal products or highlighting special products launched by a brand. These displays have an interactive element to them, setting them apart from the rest and tempting customers to try them out.

Easy to position in your store

Even customers who are at the check-out counter with just a couple of items are likely to impulsively add a small product from a hangsell to their bill. This is why they are extremely effective around check-out counters. However, they can be positioned along shelves in relevant sections for cross selling products as well. The S-hooks make it simple to attach hang sell strips to shelving, just prise apart the closed end to loop in the hang sell strip. These sturdy hooks can keep the products in place quite easily.

Mills Display is the ultimate destination for retail display solutions

Mills Display has built a reputation for providing impeccable retail solutions for supermarket and retail environments. A kiwi, family-owned business, our local knowledge gives us an edge.

Hangsell displays can be a persuasive visual merchandising tool and excellent for a for a retail and supermarket environment. They work very well to highlight a special product or brand. At Mills Display, we have everything you need to set them up in your space.

Contact us to learn more about our huge range of products or drop by our product showroom on Neilson Street in Penrose to discuss your options. We are happy to chat to you about the best solutions for your business.

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Draw more customers in with a visual treat for bakery and deli displayware

A big part of food display is about appealing to your customers’ senses – after all, we eat with our eyes first. Set up a tempting presentation of your food items with the right accessories.

Whether you are a specialist retailer or you have a food section in your supermarket, the way you display your food is just as important as the quality of the items themselves. Don’t let your products down by arranging them in a flat presentation that doesn’t highlight their value. Don’t forget that in today’s world of social media, a photograph of a tempting spread can go a long way.

Maintain a hygienic area

Hygiene in a food related retail space was always important, but has become more so post pandemic. Food presentation accessories like dome covers give you an elegant solution to keep food on display covered and safe.  These clear plastic domes showcase your food well while keeping it fresh throughout the day. Smudge-free glass, clear counters and clean workplaces give customers indications that the food storage and preparation is well-maintained and clean.

Separate cutting boards

One of the easiest ways for bacteria to spread in a kitchen or food space is via cutting boards. This is why they’re an important aspect of food safety and it’s recommended that separate boards are used for breads and meats. We have a range of different cutting boards to suit your needs, from polyethylene in different colours to attractive acacia wood display cutting boards. Making a clear distinction on using different coloured boards for different types of foods is important.

Dynamic presentation with step risers

Meticulously arranged food in a cohesive presentation sends customers the message that food is handled carefully. Leave no place empty and create dimension so everything is not at the same level. For varying heights within a serve-over counter, use cake stands and step risers. Appeal to the senses, imagine the smell of freshly baked bread that tempts you to step into a bakery. Your food section should look good and smell inviting to draw customers in. Choosing the right colours that highlight your products will persuade customers to take a second look. Avoid clutter at any cost and create specific points of focus that will draw your customers’ eye.

Arrange things conveniently

The presentation isn’t just about looking good, but also convenience. In one sweep, customers should be able to take in the different foods you have on offer and make a choice. If it takes too long to understand all the categories and varieties available, customers are likely to give up and move on. Target those busy customers who are looking to spend the minimum buying time, have your ready to-go combos on display. Special offers and pricing should be clearly marked to leave no room for confusion and to help customers make their decisions quickly.

On-brand indicators

It’s useful to use decorative items that continues the brand language. For instance, to create a fresh, organic, clean presentation, produce replicas and parsley garlands reinforce the brand image. Warm wooden cutting boards and wooden display easels for signage completes the look.

Choose food display accessories that work for you

Food display accessories need to be able to withstand daily use and require straightforward maintenance. Polyethylene cutting boards, clear plastic domes and acrylic step risers not only present food in your serve over counter beautifully but are also easy to keep clean and hygienic. These food-grade accessories are excellent for food outlets and economical in the long run. Some customers are reassured by signs that showcase food and safety practices that are practiced at your store. This is especially relevant in the post-COVID world.

Call Mills Display to serve up a sumptuous food display

Local knowledge coupled with international buying power and supply partners puts Mills Display in the best position, offering you quality products at competitive prices.  Mills Display has years of experience and a solid reputation for providing excellent customer service.

Food presentation is a core specialisation and we have a comprehensive range of products to showcase your items in the best possible way. Our friendly and experienced team is committed to getting customers results and will be able to guide on products that can take your presentation to the next level.

Our inventory encompasses a diverse selection with over 3000 items of displayware. It is our aim to offer you the best solutions for your commercial space so we’re keen on keeping up with the latest products and thinking out of the box. Get in contact with our specialist team for a friendly quote or to explore your options.  We’re also accessible at our showroom on Neilson Street in Penrose.

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Shopping Trolleys

Three shopping trolleys to make shopping a smooth ride for your customers

When was the last time you thought of the plumbing in your house or your car’s wipers? Probably when they stopped working they way they should. These are products that which provide an essential but unremarkable service.

Shopping trolleys fall in the same category. Besides, when kids are having joyrides, people hardly ever gush over a smoothly operating trolley. However, the moment they get one with a wonky wheel, they just lose their mind!

Shopping carts or trolleys form an essential part of the shopping experience. If you own or manage a supermarket, shopping mall, or any large store, you need them to ensure your customer’s shopping journey is a smooth one. 


Here’s a quick rundown of the shopping trolleys in our range:


Standard trolleys

This standard shopping trolley is the ride of choice at a large number of New Zealand supermarkets and shopping malls. 

9 reasons why it’s for you:

  1. Sturdy yet lightweight making it easy to handle when full
  2. Can handle weights up to 55 kg
  3. Silent wheels so it doesn’t add to the noise in the store
  4. Two fixed wheels at the back and two swivel ones at the front 
  5. Long lasting, durable zinc surface coating ensures it’s protected from the harsh NZ weather conditions
  6. An ergonomic handle that makes moving it a breeze; plus, colour is customisable to suit different brands’ colours and logos
  7. Corner bumpers reduce damage to itself as well as other trolleys
  8. Foldable baby seat with buckled child restraint belt that ensures kids are safe and comfortable
  9. You own or manage a supermarket or retail business where products are not excessively large or heavy 


Our shopping cart comes in two size variants – the 125 litre trolley and the 150 litre trolley

Cargo trolleys 

The bigger cousin of supermarket trolleys, cargo shopping trolleys are useful in hardware stores, garden centres and wholesale goods shops.

Shopping Trolley Cargo 42L

10 reasons why it’s for you

  1. Sturdy yet lightweight making it easy to handle when full
  2. Large shelf 
  3. Can handle weights up to 200 kg including 100 kg on the top basket
  4. Top basket folds down to accommodate larger items 
  5. Two fixed wheels at the back and two swivel ones at the front 
  6. Long lasting, durable zinc surface coating that ensures it is protected from the elements and NZ weather conditions and looks good for longer
  7. An ergonomic handle that makes moving it a breeze; plus, it’s available in different colour trims with custom printed inserts
  8. Corner bumpers reduce damage to itself and other trolleys
  9. Can be made with or without a spring-loaded cargo shelf that helps with easy loading and unloading
  10. You own or manage a hardware store, garden centre or any other business where products are large or heavy 

Check out the cargo shopping trolley here

Shopping basket trolleys 

A smaller cart with space for our 20 and 26L shopping baskets, this trolley is ideal for shopping centres with smaller aisles and lesser maneuvering space.

Shopping Basket Trolley

9 reasons why it’s for you

  1. Sturdy, compact and space-saving
  2. Spares your customers carrying heavy baskets
  3. Can handle weights up to 55 kg (15 kg on the top basket and 40 kg on the bottom basket)
  4. Two fixed wheels at the back and two swivel ones at the front 
  5. Long lasting, durable zinc surface coating that ensures it is protected from the elements and NZ weather conditions and looks good for longer
  6. Hooks can be added to hold the customer’s bag
  7. An ergonomic handle that makes moving it a breeze; plus, it’s available in different colour trims with custom printed inserts
  8. Corner bumpers reduce damage to itself as well as other trolleys
  9. Perfect for liquor stores, small convenience stores and other shops where aisle space is limited 


Read more about the shopping basket trolley here.

Everything for your customer to shop till they drop

Besides shopping trolleys, we also have other accessories that makes your customers’ shopping trips the best possible experience. Check out our shopping baskets (available in a range of colours) and shopping basket stands

Need help picking a shopping trolley?

If you’re unsure of what shopping accessory works best for your space, get in touch with our friendly team for support today.

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