Author: Will Fuentes, Retail Expert
With all the bad Black Friday press the title of this blog may seem confusing. It is true that in the last few years retailers have reported a drop in Black Friday traffic and surveys recently conducted indicate that this year will be no different. Shoppers have felt overwhelmed by the constant sales, new events (Cyber Monday, Pre-Thanksgiving, etc.), and the opening of stores on Thanksgiving. This has led to Black Friday becoming less and less relevant. However, the party is not over.
BY MARC HAFNER, CEO AND CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD, REVIONICS
Today’s technology-empowered shoppers have unprecedented control, unfettered access and unlimited options. With mobile at their fingertips, they have access to an infinite universe of shopping options. They’re shopping seamlessly, without borders, looking for the best offer. In control, they are driving the change cycle and dictating the speed of retailing today. It’s both a risk and an opportunity as their loyalty is renewed, or revoked, with each interaction.
- The main message around discounting from retailers was a warning to abandon cynical discounting. The success of luxury brands versus negative sentiment around additional discount events, such as Black Friday or Amazon Prime Day, for example, calls for retailers to develop more sophisticated pricing and promotional strategies that can capitalise on customer and Big Data analysis.
- Increased focus on making the most of customer data should be directed towards employing discounting in a more personalised way. The Waitrose top ten discounts of choice is a recent interesting example of this approach. On a practical level, real-time intelligence on customers, sales and inventory can promote more intelligent buying to maximise margins and minimise markdowns.
- Apply customer data analysis alongside pricing optimisation tools to improve the markdown process itself and reduce margin erosion. Aligning category and range reviews with KVI analysis can speed up and support more effective merchandising and marketing processes, for better execution on optimal pricing and discounting strategies for both the business and brand.
Author: David Thompson, Chief Technology Officer at Revionics
As we start to wrap up a very busy week for Revionics, I know many of you are probably wondering how our Revionics Insight 2015 went. Hopefully, you were able to get a glimpse by following us on Twitter (@Revionics) and LinkedIn as about a dozen of us were blasting into the social sphere. Overall, the conference was GREAT! Our marketing teams have been working NONSTOP and still are finishing up the post-event recovery activities.
The excitement and energy shown by our customers and partners at the event was contagious. We had a number of retailers attending the event for the first time and what’s inspiring about this is their willingness to rethink the role of analytics and pricing in their overall retail model.
Author: David Thompson, Chief Technology Officer at Revionics
On day 2 of Revionics' Insight 2015 Conference, I am remembering again why I love the retail business so much. In retail, it seems to me that there is always an opportunity to separate one's business or vision from the competition, whether by assortment, service level, price or some other factor. This morning we were treated to a great lesson in the importance of brand. Tim Lowe of Lowes Foods gave a fascinating presentation on how they define and protect their brand, and how this drives their business. Tim talked about the importance of "knowing what you stand for..." , and in a business as tough as grocery it really makes you think about the truth of this.
Practical Strategies for Escaping the Promotions Death Spiral: World Retail Congress Panelists Share Insights Driving SuccessWednesday, 21 October 2015 00:00
By: Karen Dutch, Senior Vice President, Marketing
World Retail Congress is always a high-energy event and this year’s conference in Rome was no exception. With a variety of insightful break-out sessions to choose from, the panel titled “Kicking the Discounting Habit” stood out as one of the most well-attended and engaging sessions of the conference. And it’s no surprise – everyone knows this is a hot topic for retailers and shoppers alike. Price is top of mind for shoppers today and a retailer’s biggest margin lever. It’s incredibly critical to get every shopper the right offer, at the right time, via the right channel. WRC retailers were hungry to hear from their peers on pricing and promotion strategies and tactics that build shopper loyalty, enable them to compete more profitably and support their brand image while escaping the ‘race to the bottom’ death spiral.
Two of Revionics’ European customers, Argos and METRO Cash & Carry, participated on the panel, as did our Chief Science Officer Jeff Moore. Forrester Research VP and Principal Analyst George Lawrie moderated the panel asking incisive questions and keeping the conversation relevant and engaging.
By Cindy Kim
The complexities of promotions have exploded – and retailers are stuck in the endless “death by discount” cycle that is destroying their margins. To help retailers turn underperforming promotions into profit generating promotions strategy, we recently teamed up with Susan Nichols, Publisher for Apparel Magazine, Brian Kilcourse, Managing Partner for RSR Research, and Mark Schwans, Senior Director of Solutions for Revionics, for an insightful webinar. In case you missed it, you can view it here on-demand: Retail Pricing in a Dynamic Promotional World.
Following the webinar, I had a chance to speak with Brian and he was kind enough to contribute additional thoughts on this very topic.
Contributed Blog by Brian Kilcourse, Managing Partner, RSR Research
Retailers are caught in a promotions spiral. Two recent trends triggered that spiral; the lingering effects of the Great Recession have caused consumers to put more weight on “low price” as a key component of “value” than ever, and the mass adoption of “smart” mobile technologies by consumers since 2009-10 has made it possible for them to find the best solutions to their lifestyle needs anytime and anywhere, from anybody.
As an annual sponsor of FMI Connect 2015, it was an exciting forum – a collection of grocery retailers and technology vendors and food vendors. With the grocery retail market facing some massive challenges and opportunities, it was also a forum to learn about shifts in shopping patterns – what and why consumers buy.
The invaluable part of this experience was hearing directly from grocery retailers – looking to improve their current model, technologies to drive better pricing and promotions decisions but also how to tailor their model to drive better engagement and loyalty. This demonstrates that we’re moving in the right direction – putting the customer front and center at the shopping journey.
Recently I had the pleasure of joining my Revionics colleagues and our Germany-headquartered partner, Strategix Enterprise in hosting a series of workshops on “Pricing Right” in Germany, Russia and Poland. The turnout and participation were very exciting – in all, 65 retailers joined the event to get actionable education on applying price optimization across the entire product lifecycle to compete more profitably.
The lively sessions integrated lectures with use case-oriented demonstrations of Revionics® Price Optimization, Revionics® Promotion Optimization and Revionics® Markdown Optimization, including what-if scenario planning. In each city, we also presented relevant case studies to give attendees insight into how their retailer colleagues use price optimization to deliver remarkable business results – including enhanced sales, margins and shopper loyalty – under real-world competitive conditions.
Revionics’s Competitive Data Partner (CDP) Program continues to build momentum in the industry. Announced last October, the program was created in response to retailers’ request to “take the friction” out of leveraging competitive data and insights at the speed, scale and frequency required to price more strategically and precisely.
Today, Indix, the cloud-based Product Intelligence company that provides analytics and insights for brands, retailers and developers, is the 10th competitive data provider to join the program!