RetailWire asks: Where are the In-Store Implementation Best Practices?

Published on: 2015-02-05

RetailWire brings news of a new implementation strategy guide from The In-Store Implementation Sharegroup, and asks for suggestions and other guidelines from its highly regarded BrainTrust in this panel discussion.

More than a year in the making, the 15,000-word document argues in favor of a collaborative, industry-wide initiative aimed at closing the implementation gap that today limits effectiveness of merchandising, promotion and category management in the retail consumer product industry.

The ISI Sharegroup was formed in 2007 by like-minded visionaries from consumer packaged goods, retail, merchandising services, technology and consulting firms. Member companies include Anheuser-Busch, Driveline, General Mills, Giant Eagle, Nestle-Purina, PepsiCo, Procter & Gamble, RetailTactics, Schnuck's, The Partnering Group, and VSN Strategies. [Editor's Note: James Tenser is the principal author of the ISI report.]

In-store implementation, or ISI, refers to the collective physical and informational actions performed at retail to actualize merchandising, marketing and media plans in the store. ISI encompasses compliance, measurement and communications activities, and is defined by a Plan-Do-Measure process cycle that controls implementation plans and work and communicates implementation signals.

Sharegroup members estimate the available bottom line opportunities from improved implementation approach one percent of gross product sales, or $10 to $15 billion of the $1.5 trillion total U.S. annual volume across the food, drug, and mass channels. Contributing factors include an estimated $46 billion in excess shelf inventory in grocery, costing $3 billion in lost profits; the ever-persistent out-of-stock problem, reported at 8.3 percent of items overall, amounting to tens of billions of dollars in affected sales; and as much as $25 billion in ineffective promotional spending annually by CPG manufacturers.

Our take:

While the scope of the report is substantially wider than what WireSpring is accustomed to, it is an excellent read for anyone involved with merchandising, in-store media or other store/retail experience design tasks. We particularly like that, "The working paper proposes a path toward greater cooperation between retailers, manufacturers and third parties that would ultimately enhance the customer experience and industry profitability." As retail digital signage and interactive kiosk projects become larger and more complex, we often find that a lack of communication and cooperation between departments, groups and different solution providers is often one of the most challenging things to deal with. Certainly any clear path towards mutually-beneficial cooperation and an understanding of each party's role and responsibilities can only be a good thing.

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