NORRISTOWN, Pa. -- Genuardi Super Markets here put the squeeze on candy and enhanced the category's selection, with the hope of boosting sales.
"What we basically did was tighten up the [gondola] section and increase our peg variety by 20 to 24 items," explained Jack Mahon, grocery buyer-merchandiser for the 23-store chain.
Often when retailers add pegs, they reduce the number of shelves devoted to lay-down products. But not Genuardi. Indeed, during the revamp the 16 feet devoted to gondola candy didn't delete a fixture or expand an inch, Mahon said.
"We tightened up the air space on the lay-down shelves," said Mahon. "We took 8 feet and pegged it about halfway up the section. And we now have a base of three shelves and pegged it from there up."
Prior to the new planogram, Genuardi had two rows of shelving running horizontally. The new design calls for three rows, which makes the section slightly higher than it had been previously.
"By tightening up the air space, it just gave us a little more room to go ahead with another row of items," Mahon explained.
Genuardi began working on the new planogram last September with the help of Nabisco Foods and American Chicle. It was completed in November.
"We looked at what items weren't earning their shelf space and weeded out the slow sellers," Mahon explained. "Then we brought in some new items to replace them."
In addition, the chain acquired more new items for the new peg slots. "So," said Mahon, "we brought in a total of 35 to 40 new items, but increased [the stockkeeping units] only about 24 overall." Most of the new items, he added, are products from Nabisco and American Chicle.
While he suspects the new department is helping candy sales, Mahon said he has yet to crunch any figures. "I haven't pulled out the numbers and actually looked at the category and compared it to where it was last year. I'll probably review it at the end of the first quarter," he said.