Advanced Analytics Takes the Guesswork Out of Retail Merchandising

Talitha Loftus
Talitha Loftus
Marketing Manager

There is no doubt the retail landscape has changed, and long gone are the days where in-store decisions are based solely on “gut feel” or guesswork - now, more than ever, retailers in the apparel industry are leaning on advanced analytic tools to understand the complete path to purchase in order to make effective merchandising decisions.

Though physical retail is unlikely to disappear anytime soon, the consumer purchasing experience is quickly evolving, and to remain competitive merchandisers and retailers will need to consider an advanced retail analytics approach in order to gain traction and drive more sales.

Many retailers are under the misbelief that sales might be the ultimate metric and end goal to measure, but what most retailers don’t realize is that it’s very difficult to manage sales efficiently without having more foundational “stepping stone” performance metrics in place. Leveraging foundational metrics such as capture rate, dwells and exposure rate gives retailers the platform to better connect, listen and engage with their audiences in order to make better retail decisions.

Luckily with the RetailNext advanced analytics solution, retailers around the globe can monitor the complete shopper journey from the minute the shopper enters the store to when they exit. By having access to this type of information, store owners are able to test and measure new concepts such as store design, layout and merchandising prior to expensive, large-scale company-wide rollouts.

For example, a large national retailer recently approached RetailNext to help optimize the performance of two apparel fixtures across 50 stores. Legacy metrics such as total store traffic and average fixture spend were insufficient to provide a clear answer.

The retailer deployed the RetailNext platform to evaluate the two fixtures by tracking shopper interaction data including purchases, along with data from the stores’ own video cameras, sensors, and POS system. This process helped RetailNext to collect a robust set of data points including; shopper traffic, dwell time per fixture, engagement measures, and POS transaction data.

The following opportunities were uncovered:

  • Fixture exposure rate: Fixture A (93%) vs. Fixture B (38%)
  • Dwell time: Fixture A (13 secs) vs. Fixture B (17 secs)
  • Conversion rate: Fixture B 2x more than Fixture A
  • Fixture A: Due to its high exposure and low engagement, the retailer’s merchandising team decided to use this fixture for displaying trend merchandise instead of basic merchandise.
  • Fixture B: This fixture performed well in engagement and conversion but suffered from overall exposure. The merchandising team decided to focus the fixture on destination merchandise and increase marketing efforts to drive traffic to the fixture – resulting in increased sales.

In the end, the retailer was able to optimize its in-store layout, and ultimately apply the learnings across its entire chain of 50 stores in the U.S. This is just one example of how advanced analytics can help you make more informative and successful decisions.

Think you might benefit from deploying  RetailNexht’s advanced analytics solution for your next retail project? Check out the Retail Labs/Advanced Analytics solution brief and the step-by-step infographic-style guide below to find out more.[

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