The evolution in consumer and outside of retail happened fast. From Amazon with less than an hour grocery delivery to your doorstep, to Uber delivering foods, or even driverless cars now being seen on on the highways.  CPG executives must keep up with the competition.

Keep up with technology trends.

For those in retail, its important to keep up with these trends. Not only as some of these technologies are competing with or disrupting experiences at Retail but also because the in-store shopping experience is on the brink of major changes.

For years there has been chatter about in-store technologies for out of stock, promotions, etc. yet few have succeeded in mainstream adoption. As technology pressures contain to arise outside of the storefront, the pressure for retailers to continue to evolve in-store will continue to grow.

CPG Competition.

CPG executives must not only look for new ways product brands can be exposed and made available to customers but also for new forms of in-store engagement that drive different ways to evaluate and measure product brands in-store success.

What in-store technology are you most excited about?  We’re confident it’s Shelvspace.

The Industry’s new secret for increasing retail sales by 20% in 2017

The retail world has operated the same way for decades. Historical performance is measured by ACV, share of category or total dollars sold. Sales VPs are continually pressured to do more with less people and grow overall sales. Companies are continually playing the cat and mouse game of ongoing promotion cycles and incentives with distributors and retailers that create immediate sales but never really sure if they have ROI or grow the overall category.

What if we told you there was a simple way you could increase retail by up to 20% without adding any new product lines, changing your trade promotions, or hiring more sales people? Interested?

Well not only is it possible, but for those who don’t start adapting to the Industry’s new way of retail you are very likely to get left behind with eroding market share.

The secret is not really a secret, more of a movement. The 20% lost sales has been occurring for decades, but most companies feel helpless in doing anything about it. Missed promotions, wrong placements, out of stocks, out of compliance planograms. All the common retail execution challenges you have been fighting (or ignoring) for years are the answer to finding a quick 20% increase in sales.

The issue in the past is that due to fragmented data, communication, and time lags most companies have been helpless to impact this. By the time they realize execution of a promotion or new set is off, the window to fix it is already over. Or, if working through brokers or trying to get attention of retail buyers to help fix, they feel helpless and with little control to impact.

A movement in the Industry has begun to change this. This problem is not just a supplier problem, but brokers, distributors and retailers all benefit when these issues get resolved.

One reason for this problem not getting fixed in the past is that the measurement system has been very much outdated and underpowered to handle. Companies are solely relying on Scan or shipment data, which tell you what already happened, not what needs to get fixed. Sales and category managers have been stuck with archaic reporting systems. Companies collecting data from their field reps with apps are only getting a partial story with limited ability to impact broader retail opportunity.

The movement in CPG is to rethink the entire approach of data, mobile solution, crowdsourcing, and retail performance and make data actionable and real-time for sales teams. The movement is to look at not just data, but in-store pictures and activity in real-time. The movement relies on not just field teams, but on third party solutions and advanced automation to help ensure fixes occur.
In future blogs we will provide more examples of category leaders putting this into action.

Time to make 2017 the biggest growth year yet. You can do it by simply fixing what is broken!

For customized best practices, examples in your category, or a free audit in one of your key accounts click here.

Convenience stores are known partially for their assortment of food, amongst other things. Most different types of industries have their characteristics in general; outlets have clothes/shoes, stores like Best Buy are known for their electronics, and fast food places are associated with a drive-thru. However, will the latter apply to gas stations as well? That surely isn’t something that is conceivable, right? One person is pushing the envelope on this concept, trying to be the leader of innovation in this industry. (more…)

The Consumer products good Industry is going through yet another large transformation.   If you have been around long enough you remember the old sales days.  The transition from backpack size phones and beepers and early days of email and fax all the way to newest tablets and smart phones.    If you are still carrying around binders and big laptops you may also be feeling the pressure of being behind the curve.

Despite the conversation of mobile sales tools spanning across decades, it seems as though it hasn’t been until very recently that leading companies are truly unlocking the competitive advantage that a mobile sales platform can provide.   In a 2013 survey by GMA, only 7% of CPG companies had adopted mobile platforms but (more…)

The CPG industry is fiercely competitive with brands fighting for every inch of shelf space and market share.  Having a good product is not enough anymore… to really be a successful, you must find a way to stay ahead of your competition, and do it quickly.

To succeed in any business you must have a good product. But in the CPG industry, it is vital to stay on top of what is happening at retail today and ensure you are positioned to win the battle for the consumer’s business tomorrow, next week and next month.

The speed at which the best Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) companies take advantage of the latest consumer trends, respond to competitor’s promotions and pricing changes, and constantly deliver new product innovations and line extensions, has a direct correlation on their respective market share.

CPG Industry next Innovation – “Big Data”

If you ask almost any CPG executive, they will embarrassingly admit, they are behind other industries in regards technology and have been for a while. In the same breath, they will tell you what is needed and 9 times out of 10 it its data. And not just access to the data, many have that now, but the ability to analyze that data and make it actionable for sales teams in the field.  Whether it be distributor shipment data, or retailer scan data, the ability to analyze vast amounts of data instantly will unlock business intelligence and be instrumental in helping CPG companies win the battle for retail shelf space and ultimately consumer sales.

Imagine if you had the ability to instantly see what products were shipped to what stores; Or better yet, what products weren’t that should have been? What if you had the ability to see what products didn’t have a scan through the register in the last 3 weeks? Or the ability to benchmark high moving products in a particular area?

I think everyone would agree this information is invaluable. So while the data is available, the ability to process that data so a manager can analyze it, and get this information in the hands of reps, in a timely and digestible format just does not exist.

Shelvspace is currently establishing partnerships with some of the leading data providers in the CPG industry that will bring actionable data to the fingertips of your reps. Contact us today to see how we are innovating the way data is used in the CPG Industry.

Shelvspace works with several emerging and category leading brands.  Some with under 5M of total retail sales, others with several billion.

We have found some common patterns that are universally true across all.  In doing so, we have found a way that universally unlocks more sales for every brand that does it.

Let me start by outlining the problems that many of you selling in the grocery, specialty, drug, c-store or club are well familiar with:

You are losing up to 20% or more of your sales opportunities due to these six factors:

  1. Product is out of stock or not placed on the shelf
  2. Product is in the wrong location
  3. Product has the wrong pricing
  4. The set has the wrong product mix
  5. The product has poor merchandising
  6. The promotional display is executed incorrectly

When we share this, the response is usually “Tell me something I don’t already know.”  Or, “Yes, but none of that matters unless you can show me how to fix it.”

So, you here you go, the fix is actually easier than you think and it’s right at your fingertips.

Step 1 –  Measure the above six factors at your high volume accounts

This is the step that for some reason seems to be a huge challenge.  In a survey by CPG Matters, they found that less than 25% of companies have a system for managing and monitoring retail execution.   Acknowledging that the above six factors could be a problem and knowing exactly the size and the scope of the problem are two very different things.   The reason knowing is so important goes well beyond just identifying problems, it’s actually a requirement for fixing it.  We’ll discuss more on how to do this in steps 2 and 3.

Step 2 – Create a recurring system of measurement AND visibility

Again, this is a step intuitively all CPG sales members acknowledge as a no brainer, yet a very small percentage of companies we work with have successfully implemented.

Spot checking these problems with period audits or data points satisfies some teams that they have a handle on the problem, however, it typically does very little to move the needle on solving it.   It’s not until you have an integrated and consistent system to measure the progress of these problems over time using both sales data, visual in-store pictures, and activity data that you can really create a way to control and mitigate the problem.

Step 3 – Now that you have this system in place, you need to share it in real-time with the team responsible for fixing it.   

This team represents four areas:

  • Your own sales team
  • Your third party broker or crowdsourced sales team
  • Your distributor
  • Your retailer

The magic of steps 1 and 2 if it’s done correctly, and shared with the team in the right way, the problem will get reduced by up to 50% or more.    

Some CPG leaders are skeptical, and will say, “I can have as much data as I want, and getting a broker, distributor, or retailer to do anything is the problem”   Well, one of the problems all along has been in what you’re giving them.   Giving information the right way and at the right time will be your best solution.  By communicating more effectively, this can help resolve issues with low hanging fruit that can amount to half of the total sales being lost.  Everybody in the retail chain wins when your product sales are at the highest level they can reach, so everyone wants to fix these retail execution gaps.  They all just need to better understand what is happening at the right time and communicated in the right way

Try these three steps yourself and get a 10% lift in less than 90 days.

For more best practices on any of these steps, or for a 90 day test program click here shelvspace.