A retailer’s layout is arguably one of many key strategies for its success. Retailers invest a significant amount of time, effort, and research into designing their physical flows, merchandise placements, and the overall vibe and enjoyability of the space, each of which are geared to engage the consumer and keep them shopping in the store for an extended period of time. Studies suggest that less than two-thirds of consumers who enter a store seeking a specific product end up leaving with that same exact item. What then influences and closes the sale for the remaining one-third of shoppers? How is the delicate balance of satisfying both retailer and manufacturer reached in designing an optimal retail experience?

According to a Professor of Business Administrator at University of Illinois, the optimal store layout is the "result of balancing interests of two different types of markets – consumers and suppliers".  Through a study conducted several years back, Professor Liu goes on to state that brick-and-mortar retailers face both markets, consumers and manufacturers, with equally vested interests. Retailers and manufacturers share an ultimate goal and that is to drive sales for their products. While retailers want to create the ultimate shopping experience, they also rely solely on their manufacturers to provide the products that will drive sales. With that in mind, retailers must ultimately decide how to provide for consumers and manufacturers and one key component of this is physical in-store merchandising.

in-store display photos

In-store display signage

It goes without saying that consumers live within an information saturated environment and can easily read product reviews, price compare, and spec compare competitive products across brands and retailers. It isn’t until they walk into the store, however, that they can truly experience the product on a sensory level. This is particularly true with major appliances, one of the few remaining consumer driven categories that hasn’t yet been drastically impacted by online resellers. The value and lucrative nature of securing an in-store placement dually benefits retailers and manufacturers, although space comes at a premium largely due to the physical size and space occupied by major appliances. Retailers increase their revenue when they can maximize their sales / sq. ft. and merchandising is key for this purpose. Subsequently, securing an end-cap space for a suite of kitchen appliances costs the manufacturer significantly more than a placement located within the back of the assortment and the manufacturer will anticipate a significant return on their investment with the former.  Similarly, retailers will be apt to position the more attractive, sales-driving products at the entrance to their assortments, hoping to catch consumer attention. Remember, only two-thirds of shoppers, on average, end up purchasing the product(s) they set out to when entering the store…location is everything and can directly impact sales.

Practical App(lications)

To maximize major appliance product assortments and the limited retail space available, manufacturers and retailers have turned to creative methods of maximizing space without sacrificing SKU counts. As gap intelligence continues to evolve our home appliance GFD (great freakin’ data), it became apparent that weekly monitoring and reporting of product location was a necessity for the appliance services. While we’ve always reported whether a product was floored or not, we recently expanded our product location reporting to provide a comprehensive view of the locations that matter. With our expanded data location reporting, we can now report, on a SKU level, whether the product is located on the floor, in a drawer (cooktops), on the retail tag only, or within a suite.

Retail App

While the possibilities of utilizing our product location data points are robust, examples of use cases include:

•    Determining brand and product presence
•    Calculating a brand’s total portfolio size at a particular retailer
•    Analyzing emerging trends across retailers & brands such as floored color variations, capacities, and form factors
•    Comparing retailers floored assortments

Product Location by Brand

Our expanded product location information is currently available across all six of our major appliance services, which includes: Dishwashers, OTR Microwaves, Ranges, Refrigerators, Laundry, and our newest category to launch, Cooktops & Wall Ovens. One of the most influential models in marketing is what is known as ‘the 4Ps’ and gap intelligence makes it our business to tell you everything we can surrounding products, placements, pricing, and promotions across channels. Multiple consumer studies suggest that shelf placement and product location have one of the greatest effects on consumer behavior and ultimately sales performance. With our enhanced home appliance product location capabilities, we further allow our clients to gain deeper insight into what’s happening on the floor and what your competition is up to.

Product Location Chart

Our new product location data can be accessed across all of our reports and platforms including our cloud-based Dashboard.  We’d love to give you a walk-through of the data now available to you and your teams. If you’re interested in learning more, please email the gap intelligence home appliance team.

For more than 15 years, gap intelligence has served manufacturers and sellers by providing world-class services monitoring, reporting, and analyzing the 4P’s: prices, promotions, placements, and products. Email us at info@gapintelligence.com or call us at 619-574-1100 to learn more.