Effective ranging – Academy in Action 2021

The IAA and Coca-Cola Europacific Partners (CCEP) visit Gita Patel’s Greater Manchester store to help her improve her ranging

Effective ranging – Academy in Action 2021 main

Retailers who effectively range their products are using their space as efficiently as possible to maximise sales.

Using sales data, they understand how to give their bestsellers prominence, while ensuring new products get adequate representation in store and through social media posts.

They establish a core range of products, usually with a ‘good, better, best’ ranging policy, which gives them the breathing space to try new products.

Gita Patel has owned Limehurst Mini Market & Off Licence for 15 years, during which time it has stood out for its strong customer service and a post office. With the post office currently closed, Gita is looking to develop the store to help it stand on its own.

To do this, she wants to better understand how her product placement throughout the store is holding sales back, and what steps she can take to improve it.

How can the IAA and Heidi Vossen-Barnes from CCEP help improve her ranging?

Why I take part

“I’m happy that the IAA and Heidi from CCEP came to help me out. The visit was very interesting, and they have given me some brilliant ideas. I can now see we have some ranges with too many products that we can cut down to make space for bestsellers, which should bring in more customers. It will be an adventure and an exciting journey. We’re looking forward to implementing the plans to see what results we can achieve.”

IAA advice

Ensuring a strong core range and reviewing it regularly

Some of Gita’s categories, such as squash, pet food and magazines, are overrepresented, with too many slow-selling brands. How can she ensure she is stocking her shelves more efficiently to avoid missing sales?

Heidi says: “Without EPoS data, it’s difficult to see what is doing well. If you have products that are sitting on your shelf for a long time, that’s a sign to delist. If you’ve got similar options available, it’s unlikely customers will mind, and it’ll give you space to add in new products that may sell faster.”

ACTION ➜ Review and rationalise ranges to have three options – good, better and best – removing additional unnecessary lines

Analysing sales data and deciding when to delist 

Gita’s till system doesn’t break down sales of individual product lines and so is unsure of her bestsellers. How can she get a better understanding of what is and isn’t selling to identify weak points in her offering?

Heidi says: “By noting down what you’re stocking up more frequently, you’ll get a feel for what’s doing well and what isn’t. Once you know this, you can work out what needs to go. Try placing green stickers by bestsellers and red by what you’re planning to delist to ensure you don’t reorder.” 

ACTION ➜ Record which soft drinks lines are being restocked to understand bestsellers to double-face and slow sellers to delist

Identifying new and niche products to stock

Gita gets in new products and trials them for six weeks, however she has had mixed success as they aren’t highlighted to customers. How can Gita better display and advertise her new products so that customers know to come to her store for them and have a better chance of long-term success?

Heidi says: “It’s great to be on top of new products, but you’ve got to promote them to ensure their success. Because of the way products are merchandised, customers miss things when they’re new. Make sure when you’ve got new products in you really shout them out to bring that excitement.” 

ACTION ➜ Help ensure new products are successful by promoting them on gondola ends and posting about them on social media

Partner advice

There’s a great opportunity to address some key areas in the store.

The sooner Gita can get an understanding of the relationship between space to sales, the quicker she will be able to know what her bestsellers and slower sellers are, and make informed decisions about her ranging based on that.

Heidi Vossen-Barnes
Senior Manager Independent Convenience
Coca-Cola Europacific Partners

Find out how the visit went in the follow-up feature. Click here

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“All businessess should take part in the IAA, there’s always something new to learn and innovations to share”


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