It’s just a few weeks until the summer sport season kicks off. Donna Pisani, trade communications manager at Coca-Cola Enterprises, reveals how it is helping drive sales

“It’s set to be an exciting summer for the soft drinks category, with a range of launches and brand activity to tie in with people dusting off their barbecues, having summer nights in, and enjoying UEFA Euro 2016 and the Rio 2016 Summer Olympic Games.

“Our Coca-Cola range is a firm favourite with consumers, and to further make the most of its popularity we have launched Coca-Cola Zero Cherry in 330ml and 500ml formats to tap into the demand for exciting new flavours of popular products. 

“With this summer’s Euro 2016 tournament kicking off in June, Coca-Cola is helping retailers to build excitement with a ‘win tickets’ on-pack promotion. It will appear on 90million packs of Coca-Cola, Coca-Cola Zero and Diet Coke, including 500ml, 1.25l and 1.75l bottles and 330ml can multipacks.

“Another summer staple is bottled water, which continues to dominate the soft drinks category thanks to the continued rise of the health-conscious consumer, and Glacéau Smartwater has played a key role in this growth, achieving a value of £19.4m.

“This makes it an ideal choice for retailers that are looking to increase their range, and Glacéau Smartwater is available in 600ml and 850ml bottles, while the release of a six-bottle multipack is set to increase its popularity for future consumption.”

supplier adviceWith this in mind, Adrian Troy, head of marketing at AG Barr, explains how to change your fixture to capitalise on summer sales.

“Soft drinks is one of the most important categories in your store for driving footfall so it’s important to stock the product ranges and brands your shoppers are looking for. We’re working closely with retailers to meet consumer trends with our top-performing brands: Irn-Bru, Rubicon, Rockstar, Strathmore and Barr.

“Chilled availability is the key driver for soft drinks sales, particularly during the critical summer months. Shoppers consume 21% more soft drinks during the summer, with water, juice drinks and flavoured carbonates delivering the biggest increases. Retailers who adapt their ranges to reflect this trend, particularly in the chiller, will benefit significantly.

“Empty shelves equate to lost sales, so review your range and space allocation by category often, based on your own sales data and local knowledge. If a product is selling out regularly, increase the number of facings.

“Take-home packs are also significant as they are higher value and encourage footfall. Secondary displays, merchandised with complementary products to appeal to shoppers hosting a big night in or barbecue, can drive significant incremental sales, especially when linked into an event such as a sport.”