SymphonyIRI'sTimes & Trends highlights new developments and critical events across all major CPG categories and channels, providing powerful benchmarking data to help guide your strategic decisions. This issue of Times & Trends explores current and emerging merchandising trends that CPG marketers have embraced during the past few years in an effort to satisfy consumers’ rapidly changing definition of value.
Before The Great Recession began, clean-floor policies played a prominent role in retailer efforts to enhance the shopping experience. The result was broader aisles, brighter lighting, and less promotional displays “cluttering” the aisles. When the downturn came, then evolved into a full-blown recession, retailers began to rethink their clean-floor policies and ratcheted up merchandising efforts in the name of emphasizing their value proposition.
In today’s world of ongoing economic trouble and conservative purchase behaviors, it is the value proposition that is playing a central role in the enhanced shopping experience. Merchandising is acting as a platform for communicating that value to the consumer. Establishing and maintaining effective merchandising programs, however, is a daunting task. The economy is changing quickly, as are consumer behaviors. And, merchandising technology is changing, too.
One thing is for sure: To address the constant evolution of the economy and consumers, as well as technological advances, successful marketing programs of the future will be flexible and dynamic, measured and monitored from a variety of viewpoints to enable real-time adjustments that will keep them in synch with the changing CPG marketplace.
Merchandising activity increased sharply in 2009, and has been growing at a decelerating rate since then. Growth is strongest in the drug channel, with strong growth evidenced across a number of categories, including core competency areas, such as health and beauty care.
Merchandising lift has increased across a majority of CPG categories and channels. Some categories, including many categories which cater to home-based food rituals, are seeing lift well above industry average. Feature-only and combined feature/display actions are having a sizable impact on consumer purchase behavior.