Retail Display Material Selection Guide | Acrylic, Cardboard, Metal, Wood

POP displays can increase the impact and success of visual merchandising by creating eye-catching displays that capture retail customers’ attention. These displays improve a company’s brand image and inspire customers to purchase the advertised products.

When designing your POP display, there are several factors to consider to increase the effectiveness of your advertising, including:

  • Desired use
  • Desired lifetime
  • Cost
  • Ease of assembly
  • Strength and weight constraints
  • Design

All of these factors are impacted by your choice of display material. Common POP display materials are acrylic, cardboard, wood, and metal. In this blog, we’ve developed a guide detailing the various POP display materials and the benefits and characteristics they lend to the success of your POP display.

Acrylic Displays

Acrylic is a versatile material usually sold in sheets but is also manufactured in different shapes, such as tubes and rods. It is available in varied thicknesses, colors, opacities, and finishes. An appealing characteristic of acrylic is its ability to be easily shaped to fit exacting specifications, making it an excellent option for display construction.


Acrylic is a popular choice for POP displays for many reasons, including:

  • Attention-grabbing design capabilities: Acrylic is highly transparent and available in a range of sizes and shapes, which can help draw attention to the products on display.  It can also be imbued with a variety of bright colors to further engage consumers
  • Durable: Acrylic’s sturdy design gives it strength and durability not possessed by other materials. POP displays made from acrylic are difficult to break and can withstand repeated touch in high-traffic areas. Acrylic displays don’t rust or scratch like metal displays. For outdoor use, acrylic has a longer life than wooden displays.
  • Economical and simple to assemble: Acrylic is a more cost-effective option compared to other materials, like wood or metal. Its light weight makes it easy to transport and set up.


Using acrylic materials for POP displays provides better visibility for products. Colorful acrylic displays motivate and influence the customer’s purchase decision with their bright, welcoming features.

Because of its durability, transparency, light weight, and long life, the uses for this budget-friendly material include custom acrylic product displays, podiums, display boxes, signage, covers, and bases.

Cardboard Displays

Cardboard is an economical choice for temporary or seasonal indoor displays. Because cardboard is simple to manufacture, brands can quickly update their displays to accommodate new marketing strategies. Cardboard displays can be printed with eye-catching graphics and can easily be cut and shaped to form striking flat or 3-dimensional constructions.


Cardboard is a lightweight substitute for metal, plastic, and wood. It’s widely used as display material because of the following benefits:

  • Easier to move, assemble, and disassemble than metal or wood
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Economical
  • Low-cost shipping
  • Available in versatile sizes and shapes
  • Lightweight
  • Uses less storage space than wood, plastic, or metal
  • Available with digitally printed graphics
  • Heavy-duty
  • Recyclable


Cardboard displays come in varied thicknesses, colors, finishes, and textures. These features make cardboard a trusted option for end caps, counter displays, pallet displays that hold stackable product boxes, and larger cutout standee displays for attracting customers’ attention.

Wooden Displays

POP wooden displays are traditional, visually appealing floor displays that offer enhanced durability for highly trafficked retail areas. Using wood for your POP display can give your product or promotion a high-end feel and is suitable for long-term display.


Wooden displays offer numerous benefits for those looking to create durable, long-lasting displays. They are:

  • Naturally aesthetic
  • Strong and sturdy
  • Available in various wood types and finishes
  • Eco-friendly


Many retailers select wooden display options for warm and inviting displays, such as wooden barrels, display wagons, and display baskets. Wooden displays also offer options for custom shelving racks and bulk bins.

Metal Displays

Unlike cardboard displays, POP metal displays have the strength to hold heavy products without collapsing. Metal displays can be finished with a powder coating to increase aesthetic appeal, and they are available in different configurations such as wire, grid, and rolling displays.


Metal is another durable material alternative to cardboard and plastic. Metal displays offer longevity and durability that other materials can not provide. Other benefits include:

  • Cost-effectiveness
  • Long life
  • Stands up to product demands
  • Available with varied shelving configurations
  • Adapts to other store fixtures


Metal displays are often permanent POP displays, which minimizes the time needed for future set-ups.

Other examples of metal displays include:

  • Wire displays: These displays have a long life span and keep their shape when displaying heavy loads.
  • Rolling displays: These offer temporary product displays for rolling heavy products to different areas of the store. 
  • Grid displays: Grid displays are strong, lightweight options used for wire displays, shelves, and side panels.

Why Choose Bling Bling Packaging for Your POP Display Solutions

Nearly every industry that sells products in a retail store needs point-of-purchase displays to encourage impulse purchases or sell promotional products. The needs of each industry vary, so it’s important to select the right display material to achieve the most effective display. 

The experts at Bling Bling Packaging can help you transform your retail space with custom-designed and fabricated POP displays shipped to your store. Select from acrylic, cardboard, wooden, or metal POP displays. Contact us or request a free quote today.

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