It’s been a brutal few weeks for the UK retail sector, with various reports in the media about the state of the high street, and speculation about the demise of offline retail. And it isn’t all down to the growing strength of online retailers or even Beasts from the East! The fact is shoppers are more inclined these days to ask ‘do I really need it?’ when shopping – gone are the halcyon days of ‘I want it all’.
To convince today’s shoppers to spend you have to know what it is that converts someone from a consumer to a shopper, and from a shopper to a buyer:
1. What is it that gets your brand off the shelf and into the basket – real or virtual?
2. And what can you leverage to get more shoppers to choose your brand at the fixture or online?
The answer to these two questions will enable you to target consumers/shoppers at the point at which they choose to buy or to ignore your brand. Driving that conversion is what drives sales, and you’ll only ever get sales growth if you increase that conversion.
So if you can’t answer these questions you need to be looking to get the answers pretty quickly. Targeting conversion is much simpler, more targeted and has a quicker impact than running a new ad campaign or relaunching a brand in an effort to drive sales:
What if shoppers just don’t see your brand on shelf?
Secondary siting or a re-working of SRP could be a short-term fix, whilst you work on brand awareness, relevance and appeal
What if shoppers find your range confusing, or brand blocking overshadows the range details?
SRP or POS could drive understanding or visibility and conversion in the short term, whilst the pack designers work on clarifying the range
What if shoppers just can’t find your brand in-store?
Discussing the situation with your retail partners could lead to a move to a better location – perhaps as part of a solution-based display
But you will only ever reach these solutions if you know what the problem or opportunity is. That is why shopping insight is about investing in growth. Versus classic consumer research, shopper is rarely simply descriptive, it is almost always data with purpose. It will highlight your brand’s strengths within its category, but it will also identify the areas for improvement that will drive conversion, and so directly grow sales.
Even in these tough times sales are there for the taking – you just need to know where to look!
By Danielle Pinnington @shoppercentric