Placement Matters: Maximizing Perceived Value in the Redemption Room

Our no-fail, Top 5 Redemption Merchandising Rules for Family & Bowling Entertainment Centers

We did a survey last year, about this time, asking some of our customers what their biggest needs were — both from us, and as a Family or Bowling Entertainment Center in general. Here’s what we heard:

Keep my Profits high, my costs low, and my prizes valuable.

The needs seem simple enough, but when you meticulously evaluate what makes an unforgettable guest experience in the game and redemption rooms, the equation starts to get complicated. Like any ecosystem, the roles your Redemption and Game Rooms play in your guest’s experience is complicated and nuanced.

The most complicated part of the equation is the “keep my prizes valuable” variable. Customer trends and preferences are always changing, especially in a world driven by innovation.

How your guests perceive the value you provided is deeply integrated into the price of your games, the prizes they’re playing for, how they’re ticketed, and most importantly, where the prizes are placed.

Merchandising is almost a science.

In merchandising — like in many forms of marketing — 8 seconds rules the shelf…the amount of time you have to capture a customer’s attention and get to the point of critical mass: the buying decision. With the advent of the internet and the virility of trends, keeping up with what prizes guests are looking for on the shelves is a battle in itself, let alone knowing where to put it so it captures their attention and creates a connection.

Redemption counters and rooms are no different than retail. That’s why where you place prizes matters. We have 5 Redemption Merchandising Rules we abide by when it comes to every counter and room:

  1. Placement matters most when it comes to communicating individual prize value. To make determining the ticket value of a prize simple, keep your high priced items higher in elevation — on a wall, in bins, or in cases — and your lower priced items near the bottom. Keep this consistent and your guests will know exactly where to look for their Preferred Redemption Range.
  2. Variety is key; no matter if you’re in the Impulse Redemption Range, or the highest ticketed prizes. If there are multiple versions of something, multiple colors, you name it — make sure your customers know their options. A great example of a top performing prize with variety is Samurai Swords; with multiple colors facing, you increases the perceived value of your total prize selection, therefore incentivizing more game plays to open up their prize choices at the time of redemption.
  3. People don’t just buy products or experiences anymore…they buy stories. Your Redemption counter or room should tell your guests a story. Organizing your prizes with a narrative in mind will provide a frame of reference for how your customer likes to buy. At Redemption Plus, we create plan-o-grams based on stories we create to engage your guests, like our Armed & Ready Prize Storyboard: a collection of kid-approved and battle-ready prizes, that encourage imagination and group activity. You can read more about the Armed & Ready Story by clicking here.
  4. Quality Counts. Period. No merchandising strategy or technique can replace the value of having quality, high performing prizes available for your guests to shop from. We believe quality matters above everything else when it comes to your redemption room. Your toys need to be lovable, look good, and last long. Have products in every Preferred Redemption Range, like Samurai Swords, is key to seeing a high return in the redemption room and the game room: high-quality prizes drive high game plays. You can shop our Top 150, or by Player Type on our website.
  5. Visibility, Visibility, Visibility. It’s easy to forget this one because it seems so “duh,” but we’ve seen it time, and time again. Things like keeping “eyes” on plush facing the front, making sure they can see very color of the Samurai Swords on pegs— not bins, placing high-value (Saver + Super Saver) prizes in glorified glass cases…these are critical to successful merchandising. Rule #5 is simple: if they can’t see it, the can’t buy it. We promise we won’t’ forget if you don’t 😎

Our “rules for redemption” could fill an entire room with sticky notes, but we digress…simple is better. If you want to keep things really, really, really simple in the redemption room, give us a ring or email. Don’t sacrifice hours of your day you should be spending on more important matters. You don’t have to worry about keeping your Redemption Room profitable. We can do that for you 👍

Get back time, create better experiences, grow profitably:

This article is by Tabatha Bender, our Connection Crusader at Redemption Plus.

Insights Empower is a collection of thoughts & insights to inspire, educate and connect the Family Entertainment & Bowling Center industry. From the team at Redemption Plus, est. 2017 🎉

Visit us at for more ways to #win.

If you liked these tips and would like to see more, don’t forget to Follow us here on Medium and click that little ❤ at the bottom.