Is Your Merchandising Helping You Stand Out at Retail?06.16.2016
As a manufacturer, it can be challenging to ensure your brand is set up for success at retail and optimized for high sell through. Retailers have an entire store to run, and your brand’s merchandising may not be their top priority – especially in busy markets where store associates already have trouble maintaining inventory.
Brands face a whole host of challenges when it comes to effectively merchandising their products in store across multiple locations. At BDSmktg, many of our clients come to us to ensure their product is represented well at retail and to evaluate their brand’s merchandising situation. For many of our clients, we often find one (or all) of the following issues:
- Products are being displayed incorrectly, or not at all
- Product inventory is regularly running out
- Displays are broken, dirty, or non-existent
- Displays have outdated signage
These are just a few of the common issues that manufacturers have to deal with on a regular basis, and all of these challenges can result in diminished brand awareness and decreased sales.
Effective merchandising is something that requires ongoing attention and monitoring. Merchandising must be thoughtfully planned out, but also be skillfully executed. In order for your brand to really succeed in a retail environment, there is one step you can take to ensure that your merchandising plan is promoting your brand and improving sell-through: conduct a merchandising audit.
What is a merchandising audit?
During an audit, our team of trained Merchandising Specialists will visit your retail locations and will check to see if your merchandising plan was executed by:
- Making sure your product is displayed properly
- Confirming your product is available on the shelf and fully stocked
- Ensuring that the product is customer ready: not covered in residue or dust, positioned correctly on the shelf, and all units are working properly
- Verifying the signage is updated (example: not having football signage up when it’s basketball season)
- Confirming that pricing is accurate
In short, your inventory, pricing, displays, and the overall merchandising of your brand’s product is audited to see if it aligns with your outlined merchandising plan. Once you know what your current state is, you will be better equipped to take action and make improvements.
The bottom line is this: if you want to see sell-through, you have to start by ensuring your brand is making a strong brand statement in-store. Having a merchandising plan in place that is executed effectively and consistently will grab customer’s attention and encourage them to interact with your products. Brands that take time to evaluate their product on the shelf and on their retail displays ultimately see higher sales than those that simply trust all is going according to plan.
Don’t let merchandising challenges overwhelm you or stop your brand from showing up at retail. Instead, consider partnering with BDS to develop a new strategy. We are experts in Merchandising, Audits, Break Fix, Brand Advocacy and more! Contact us today to find out how our full suite of integrated retail marketing services can help your brand conquer any merchandising or brand advocacy challenge you face.