Product Merchandising: What Is It And Why Is It Needed
Running a company is a massive challenge because it has many complex responsibilities, including product merchandising. Of course, the correct organization of work contacts with other entrepreneurs is essential and the achievement of the highest possible sales results.
Currently, there are many different strategies aimed at attracting as many customers as possible to a particular store. One of them is merchandising. What is it, and how to use it?
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What Is Product Merchandising
The most general definition is as follows:
Merchandising is a series of activities aimed at increasing the sales of a given product. This is necessary to outperform competitors, attract new customers and significantly increase the company’s profits.
The experts explain: “When it comes to a store, merchandising is about encouraging the customer to buy more products. It will be not only the appropriate design of the store, the demonstration of goods, but also a unique approach of the staff to the buyer.”
It is worth noting that specialized agencies often deal with merchandising. They help in organizing and choosing suitable marketing strategies.
The above method of increasing sales is based on all the buyer’s senses, including sight, hearing, and even smell. Recent studies show that people are the most sensitive to visual stimuli, so original yet legible logos, banners, and overall product placement are crucial in every store.
Examples Of Product Merchandising In A Store
In almost every store, regardless of its size, you can observe a specific sequence in distributing goods on the shelves and their location throughout the room. This is done so that the buyer, searching for the necessary products, passes through as much of the store as possible. And so the essential items, like bread, will be at the back of the store.
An exciting method of product merchandising is also its systematic placement on the shelves. First of all, buyers are drawn to products in plain sight, and this is how they achieve their highest sales.
It’s a good idea to influence the customer by spraying a pleasant scent and playing relaxing music, which will make him spend much more time here.
Trendy are unique labels and tags informing about promotions and individual stands and islands where you can find a specific category of goods, for example, confectionery.
In our time, the profession of merchandiser has become common. But even twenty years ago, it was a completely incomprehensible word and an unclear set of responsibilities. The merchandisers put things in order on the shelves of stores, whereas before, it was done by the sellers themselves.
Merchandisers do not serve all the shelves of a large store at once, and they are divided into product categories. Each merchandiser must know exactly their variety of goods, for example, confectionery or, say, gastronomy.
Also, in the industrial goods of large stores – merchandisers know a specific category of goods that they serve. For example, it can be plumbing or electrician and the like.
The merchandiser must keep track of the goods on the shelf (s) of the store and in its warehouse. After all, not all goods are laid out at once. As the goods decrease from the shelves, the merchandiser must bring the rest from the warehouse on time.
The release of the warehouse from specific categories of goods is a guarantee of the following orders that stores will make to their suppliers – manufacturers of these goods. Merchandisers work precisely to free the shelves and warehouses of stores from goods; these skills are highly valued by management.
Who Are The Heads Of Merchandisers
By the way, about the leadership. Merchandisers must constantly send reports to their managers, who are either directly in the companies that produce the goods or in those very specialized agencies.
Often reports have to be sent to both addresses at once: the agency and the manufacturer. The information is a detailed list of each unit of goods, indicating the balance on the shelf and the balance in the warehouse. Photos of store shelves are also sent, signifying the correct display of goods.
Usually, merchandisers know firsthand how to layout goods – they are given unique layout plans: what to place in the foreground, what to remember deeper and further, lower or higher on the shelves.
Merchandisers send their reports, of course, using smartphones and iPhones and using unique automated accounting systems that a merchandiser must own – this is another part of his mandatory skills and knowledge.
Merchandiser managers see the results of their work, as they say, in real-time. The merchandiser has done some part of his work, for example, laid out the goods on the shelf, photographed the frame, sent the photo, and the manager immediately sees the result. However, he is in his office and perhaps in a completely different city.
About Displaying Goods On Store Shelves
The display of goods is so crucial that significant resources are spent to automate the control of the merchandiser. This is done to visually and accurately see how the product is laid out and how sales are going to correct something in time in this difficult. However, at first glance, it is a relatively simple merchandising process. Well, and in time to give a lift to the goods that end up on the shelves. The lack of goods on the frame, God forbid, is the biggest problem for both the merchandiser and all his many heads of departments and sales services.
Periodically, merchandisers are gathered for meetings, meetings, and pieces of training are held for them. At meetings, they analyze mistakes, shortcomings, problems, and how to deal with them. At the activities, they explain the features of the merchandising profession for each category of goods – these are different techniques and professional secrets.
The main task of the merchandiser is to lay out the goods on the shelves, which must be appropriately filled with goods. Precisely filled so that the product is always presented as planned on the planogram.
Can A Merchandiser Grow Up The Career Ladder?
It is believed that the profession of a merchandiser is almost the most elementary on the career ladder of sellers.
A merchandiser’s further career growth is an opportunity to become the head of merchandisers, the so-called supervisor. Then the merchandiser moves to another level, to the story of the head of merchandisers. And he does not track his work but the work of a large group of his former colleagues at once. And he is responsible not for one shelf in the store, but entire categories of different goods.
By the way, merchandisers are stationary and mobile. Stationary merchandisers are constantly in the same store, spend the whole working day there. Mobile merchandisers serve up to ten or more stores, continually moving between them.
Being stationary merchandisers, of course, is easier in a sense – they will study and know their store and their shelves with goods, as they say, by heart with their eyes closed.
Mobile merchandisers have to spend strictly limited time in each store and do their work there clearly, consistently, often using checklists with records of their work step by step from the moment they enter the store to the moment they submit reports and leave the store.
Stationary merchandisers, by their nature, are moving towards the position of the head supervisor of merchandisers. Mobile merchandisers, at times, become sales representatives. The latter are also mobile specialists, constantly moving around the city or district between outlets.
The task of sales representatives is no longer to lay out the goods, but rather to check the display right on the spot in the store. And an essential task is to sell goods and sign contracts, collect revenue, plan the supply of goods to the store. And sometimes even bring the goods on their own, if it is technically possible by the sales representative. When it comes to sales reps, that’s a different story, although it can continue every merchandiser’s story as they grow in their careers.
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