Shopper psychologist Phillip Adcock is going undercover in leading symbol groups to discover what they do really well and where they can improve.

While Costcutter is fully stocked and faced up in every category, the same isn’t true of every store we visit. “When you’ve got stock issues, you should find a way to make your shelves look fuller,” says Mr Adcock. His advice is that retailers should develop a strategy for this situation and he suggests having printed images of products which have sold out. “By having pictures of the products in their place you can give the impression that more stock is available or is soon on its way: you can already see that some supermarkets have started to do this.” He also suggests that retailers arrange their shelving with a slight tip towards the front so that stock is automatically replenished by gravity.

symbol-spy-empty-shelvesWhat can you do?

Are there products in your store with an unpredictable rate of sale?  Perhaps items such as suntan lotion, WD40 or candles?  Why not print images of them, with a friendly message apologising for the current lack of availability if they sell out?