Understanding In-Store Retail Challenges
A Closer Look at Retail Mishaps and Missed Opportunities
October 30, 2020 by Ally Azzarelli – Remodeling roadblocks, ordering too much POP for your stores, missing out on sales opportunities… These challenging situations can hurt your business, stunt your growth, and bust your budget. Having accurate data and insights can easily turn common retail negatives into positives. Here’s how.
Remodeling or Redesigning Stores Without Updated Store-Level Details
Picture this … Your retail chain is about to refresh, remodel or redesign more than 50 of your stores. You’ve spent time finalizing your budget and timeline. Have you thought about the site-specific details—such as architectural info, fixtures, and measurements—of every store location you’re remodeling? Are your employees surveying all your stores? How are you tracking this info?
By starting this project with conflicting store-level architectural details you could be setting your business up for costly mistakes and wasted time. For example, what if you ordered 50 shelving units – all the same size, yet 18 of your locations can’t actually accommodate those shelves? Talk about a remodel roadblock! These store-specific details need to be accurate as well as visible to the right people to get the job done on time and on budget.
Ordering Incorrect Signage Due to Inaccurate Info
For this scenario, envision your marketing and merchandising teams finalizing holiday plans for the upcoming season. To ensure each hall in every store is sufficiently decked in merry and bright signage, you’ve become accustomed to guesstimating print overages. However, deep down, you know that wasted money could be put to better use elsewhere in the company – and the sustainability manager is becoming all bah humbug with you about excess printing that’s preventing the company from hitting its waste reduction targets.
If you’re lucky, or your team is really good at playing the guessing game, you may be looking at single digit overages for a generic store signage kit. However, as was the case with Walgreens, you might be surprised to discover that up to 50% of your kits are unpacked directly into the trash.
Just as Mr. Kringle checks his list twice, the challenge for retailers is really knowing exactly what each store needs and can accommodate before the marketing and design team go to work. For example, if your location records are lacking up-to-date details about local ordinances that prevent certain signage formats and placement, you might just find yourself on the naughty list.
Missing Sales Opportunities Due to Inventory Allocation
A customer enters your Savannah store looking for a particular brand of barbeque flavored potato chips. Though your chain carries that brand and that flavor, the Savannah location just happened to sell out.
Shifting inventory between your stores, as in evidence-based inventory reallocation, is the obvious solution. However, without accurate up-to-date site data, you’re missing the opportunity to:
- Identify overstocked and understocked products
- Pinpoint opportunities to shift inventory among locations
- Rebalance existing inventory to avoid over ordering
- Rethink visual merchandising practices to move products from shelves
- Implement processes that link inventory allocation to customer demand