museums&MORE Fall 2015
Christa Simpson

Manager of Retail Operations Christa Simpson
The DoSeum Store
San Antonio

MM: What is your retail background?

I have worked in all aspects of retail for over 13 years, entering the world of nonprofit retail three years ago. My background includes visual merchandising, management operations, buying, customer relations and store design. I have specific expertise in supporting rebranding, store expansion and relocation of museum stores.

MM: What is the most fulfilling part of your job?

The expression on a child’s face when they come into the store after visiting the museum and finding out that they can take this part of the museum home with them. Smiles from ear to ear.

MM: What is the most unusual product in your store?

Our most unusual product would be the Rubber Chicken. The product wouldn’t make any sense to the regular shopper unless you have visited our Spy Academy Gallery.

MM: What are your top three retail tips?

No. 1: Know your members. If you know little Johnny comes in every Thursday and likes spy items, you better have something good to offer him every week. No. 2: Build up to kids, not down to them. Merchandise with that in mind. Not only will your store not look juvenile and scream toys, toys, toys; it will be sophisticated in a way that will gain higher sales. No. 3: Think ahead. By thinking ahead of future exhibits or public programs that your museum may be offering, you’ll be able to broaden your inventory for those special events. Your regular shoppers will notice that you bring in special items for those programs which will keep bringing them back to see what you have to offer for other programs or exhibits that travel through the museum.

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