Topshop, the fast fashion brand, has a fairly odd combination of totes. Since there is no crystal ball in retail (except as a product, maybe), how can brands and retailers know what products customers will want? How Assortment Strategies Work . Assortment Planning – The Holy Grail of Merchandising. These decisions affect both retailers and manufacturers supplying them. This thought leadership article is written for professionals in retail organizations in a variety of verticals who are involved with retail technology solutions, particularly in the area of assortment planning. Celles-ci permettent notamment aux livreurs d'accéder au domicile des clients en leur absence. For a fast fashion brand, Topshop relied on a smaller number of trendy products, which, in turn, resulted in virtually non-existent discounts and sold at full prices, but had to heavily discount styles from older seasons. If they stock too much variety, they may lack focus and create confusion among their customers. Retail intelligence, straight to your Inbox. Its a tricky balance, but it’s entirely doable with the help of AI and assortment intelligence. This ebook will shed light on the strategies and technologies that will allow you to make smarter assortment decisions. Which begs […], For many businesses, data analytics aren’t just useful tools to assess and shape the connection between a given company and its customer base. Partner with buying team to properly manage sku count through assortment planning and markdown strategies … 3.2. It helps retailers organize, optimize, and keep track of product information, accurately. New focal points are emerging left and right to challenge long-held beliefs about the way things ought to work. A Consider-then-Choose Model for E-Commerce Assortment Personalization 3 the problem of assortment planning or product display is \uncapacitated". Assortment planning is based on qualitative and quantitative data that together contribute to how products are purchased by retail buyers and how space is used to sell inventory. Assortment planning is all about putting the right goods in front of the right customers to maximize your sales conversions. Many companies think they do assortment planning. The data shows that trend-forward retailers are one step ahead of the rest. Let AI help to understand your assortment and performance to optimize demand planning. Automate pricing efficiency and End-to-End Price Optimization Solution. Optimize Omni-channel Demand Planning. You can learn what inventory your customers expect from you and make adjustments to sell popular products when your competitors are out of stock. What proportion of your assortment should come from the different categories you have in stock? That impacted … Fashion retails teams need to ride the latest trends without making risky maneuvers that affect the bottom line. Burlington, NJ. Not all assortment planning tools are created equal. eCommerce has evolved into a powerful business model for everyone from startup entrepreneurs to established retail businesses. Like it or not, this is a representation of your offerings and total inventory, which means this is your first impression with the customers. With the highly desirable real-time update in the background and careful analysis, there won’t be any FOMO. Retailers must make a choice such as on how to determine the appropriate assortment at stores and allocate the inventory in their warehouses, who, how, when and where to sell the stock. Assortment planning in fashion and beauty tends to be more complex than other industries, because forecasting consumer demand and industry trends are largely based on the buyer’s intuition. Their mindset is clear – focus on being more integrated with inventory planning and demand forecasts. 5 Simple Strategies to Optimize Your Assortment Based on … Assortment planning is about using data to guide the creative process. There are only 3 classic or neutral styles that round off the brand’s tote lineup. If so, check out our post on the best e … Do you make thousands of dollars in sales each month? AI-supported Planning for Omni-channel E-commerce. We argue that an e-commerce platform’s assortment capacity constraint comes from the consumers {they can only consider a small subset of all available products due to their limited time and cognitive capacity. Addressing these challenges requires an even more intimate connection between the marketing and operations functions of firms. With the promise of making their assortment planning process scalable and useful in competing with the likes of Amazon and Walmart. […]. To ease the pain of assortment planning, retailers are starting to adopt systems rooted in big data analytics and artificial intelligence. In this post (and accompanying infographic), we’ll dive into 10 ways eCommerce merchandising is different from that of traditional retail. Assortment planning Many e-commerce businesses suffer from “over assort-ment”. 1.888.326.8579 | info@mi9retail.com. How they achieve that is up to them but they need to do it fast in order to cover as much ground as possible before someone else claims it. Do they turn to historical sales data? If you play your cards right, they’ll place an order via tablet at lunchtime. Let’s now dive into what assortment planning is, why retailers need it, and what an ideal assortment planning tool should do. Of course, this doesn’t simply apply to brick and mortar shops – assortment planning for eCommerce retail Assortment planning is used to help retailers determine how their shoppers will interact with the product. Collection plans and assortments must be defined with an overview of the different distribution channels (physical network, e-commerce, s-commerce) with dynamic links between assortment, merchandising in-store and sales forecasts. Competitive Pricing Strategy - See How Products Are Priced, 5 of the Best Penetration Pricing Examples, How to Use the Price Quality Matrix to Optimize Your Product Pricing, How Amazon Uses Six Sigma and You Can Too, 20 Interesting Facts You Didn’t Know About Shopify, How Data-Driven Assortment Optimization Empowers Online Retailers. If you’re thinking of revamping your assortment (which you should be doing consistently), you need to know which brands are doing well in each category for your top competitors. Of course, this doesn’t simply apply to brick and mortar shops – assortment planning for eCommerce retail Assortment planning is used to help retailers determine how their shoppers will interact with the product. When the buyer’s hunch results in too much product or not enough, retail sales suffer, resulting in financial difficulty for next season’s buy. DotActiv Team. Also, the fact that the product development must eat into the cost they have to maintain a mix that looks ‘trendy’ doesn’t do J.Crew any favors. Once inventory is all sorted out and ready to go, price is the only lever to change, needing to be adjusted in response to the competition’s out-of-stock gaps, hot sellers or inventory depths. And, while its roots are in traditional retail, eCommerce is an animal all its own. Whereas, J.Crew offered more seasonal trends and a small proportion of classic styles, managing to sell out only the latter. … Mega-retailers like Amazon and Walmart are constantly experimenting with their assortment mixes and price points, looking for the magic mixes and numbers that keep the throughput high and look for opportunities to increase sales whenever possible. For others, there is a certain risk in trying to level the playing field – the risk of downgrading both brand’s positioning and identity. In … Retailers should be looking to fill their inventory with a carefully selected assortment that avoids items with high discounting rates and instead fill their shelves with low discounting rate and high replenishment goods. Ecommerce merchandising and omnichannel marketing make life easier. (Oh, before you jump in, perhaps you’d like to hear from some e-commerce experts. E-commerce was a standout for the company, with a record-breaking online performance during Cyber Week, McDonald said on the call. Some retailers choose to do this manually, but for retailers who recognize that as too time-consuming, there are third-party solutions to help with competitive monitoring and analytics.The data you collect transforms your assortment planning from art into science. Fortunately, businesses within the online retail space are […]. Still, at $83, the average price of out-of-stock items is considerably higher (almost double) than that of Topshop, as well as other fast fashion brands like Zara, H&M, and Forever21. With retail transitioning into a consumer-driven business faster than ever, issues like determining the best product mix and inventory size are … However, refined and proven methods for applying assortment … Assortment planning can be a tedious and difficult process, but by choosing the right software, you can gather, analyse and visualise data to assist you with correctly choosing the optimal set of products to … E-Commerce has made it possible to start a retail business without opening a bricks-and-mortar shop. Main / Blog / How to Plan and Manage E-Commerce Projects. Traditionally, product assortment is an intricate, time-consuming process that includes numerous variables. Merchandisers are constantly inundated with strategic choices on assortments. Although the basic rules of demand forecasting and inventory optimisation work independently of the particular channel in question, there are indeed a number of differences with traditional retail. Strategy is key to maintaining an edge over other companies within your niche, and advertising oftentimes plays an integral role in establishing the mission and reputation of your business. Top 5 Retail Assortment Management Software4.3 (86.67%) 3 ratings The assortment planning process is a very integral aspect for retailers. Each provides a clue to the mystery, coupled with tangible information from the marketing department (number of products per order, response rates, etc). Not being clear on the store’s identity can alienate customers and negatively impact repeat sales. If the product mix is too narrow, there is always a looming risk of losing customers to large players that cater to many tastes and preferences. Why? We’ve been recognized in Forrester’s Overview Of 23 Pricing And Promotion Providers. Omni-channel sales requires channel-specific analytics and predictions. Social media is a very strong avenue these days to make or break a brand. Which products to stock, which to sell together, these are the questions your planning … Considering that the average price for out-of stock items was $43 with an average discount of only $3, the brand had a pretty good June. This is evidenced by the fact that 80% of J.Crew styles were trending, in-vogue styles of the season but the only two out-of-stock items were older basic styles. Do you employ more than 30 people, including a merchandise buying team? 2 iterations of a more ‘current season’ style. Assortment planning focuses on choosing the right breadth (product categories) and depth (product variation within each category) for your retail store at a given time, keeping market demand in mind. Merchandise Planning and Assortment Planning According to Kunz (2005), the general merchandise plan can be def ined as a revi ew of hi storical company data, Fashion retails teams need to ride the latest trends without making risky maneuvers that affect the bottom line. The series will consider how to manage the unique challenges online retailers’ face, from assortment … Even if you own a single small store, you still need […], The more successful you are in business, the more cutthroat the competition becomes. Even as ideas are being formed and fashion trends emerge, merchants need to begin by understanding customers and measuring demand. Easy Integration Into e-Shop and Marketplaces. The product mix appears to be more decisive and focused on propelling forward the brand image while keeping revenues steady. hbspt.cta.load(857779, 'a9500a5d-0796-4255-8539-36a67537347c', {}); Not all retailers need to use this kind of assortment planning software, however. By setting up an assortment, you can assign thousands of products to your channels at that same time, in any combination that your stores require. We’ve been recognized in Forrester’s Overview Of 23 Pricing And Promotion Providers. It’s a great help for spotting emerging trends before the competition does and capitalizing on the newfound competitive advantage. As a sophisticated ecommerce platform, BigCommerce offers plenty of features. While Topshop succeeded with trend-forward styles and cleared some old stock in the summer sales, J.Crew had to work harder to sell the hot trends, emphasizing their challenge in getting the brand perception at par with their assortment mix. For retailers and brands, the saving grace is the real-time data analytics that helps with assortment planning. Accurate assortment planning is critical for large-scale retailers, but businesses tend to find the assortment planning process difficult and off-putting. This has typically been done using pen and paper or spreadsheets, but it’s a process that is increasingly being managed by plugging in data beyond internal sales these days. Before investing time and money into buying these tools and deploying them, ask yourself a few quick questions first: If you’re answering yes to these questions, you should seriously consider investigating assortment planning tools and deploy one rooted in big data and artificial intelligence, one that’ll do the heavy lifting for your team and make it much more feasible to grow sales. It would also be helpful to have a tech support from teams with expertise in the retail space, so you can have conversations on the same level. Who is set to win the 2020 grocery price wars? Other priorities like e-commerce and store operations win attention, while merchandising is presumed to be as great as it ever was. Some features you need to look for when picking an assortment tool: With these functionalities, your assortment mixing can be automated, saving your staff hours and hours of work every cycle and enabling you to change the assortment on whatever frequency you desire, instead of the monthly or quarterly cycles you might be using now. A good selection of merchandise is key to attracting and keeping customers, no matter what type of products you sell. Begin by setting goals to hold yourself and your team accountable, as well as evaluate progress over time. Following our definition of omnichannel assortment planning we discuss the strategic, tactical, and operational challenges that arise in this process. The concept applies to not one, but all levels of the fashion industry including haute couture, ready-to-wear, mass market, and street wear. Assortment planning also runs deeper than merely presenting items with seasonal relevance or that are in current fashion. Customers browse desktop sites in their kitchens over morning coffee and continue reading via smartphone as they travel to work on the train. Applying sophisticated assortment strategies is common within traditional retailing but sometimes neglected by ecommerce businesses. An assortment can also include specific products and specific variants of products. Competitive Benchmarking for Pricing and Assortment. We’ll paint you a picture with two seemingly different examples. With retail being largely driven by uncovering customer insight, the merchandising game plan changes dramatically. Analyses retail; Gestion de merchandising Whichever retail option you choose, you’ll need a business plan to get started and successfully manage it. Chain Planner. Automated pricing efficiency and End-to-End Price Optimization Solution. Retail assortment planning is something which gets affected by multiple factors. I’m often asked how online retail affects supply chain planning and how RELEX can help retailers improve their e-commerce operations. What are the ideal price ranges for making sales? For example, developing an e-commerce website with over 5,000 items in product assortment using a SaaS solution, such as WooCommerce, will not get you anywhere. Smart assortment planning tools can give your operation an agility on par with Amazon, that lets you capture new sales very quickly and in the background. 10d, Inc. team as a Chain Planner – Merchandising! Assortment planning starts with: … Features . However, the risk is well worth taking as the opportunity for any trend-led retailer who enters this environment is huge. Did you align internally on the role of your category? The world’s largest retail dataset served on intuitive custom APIs. Assortment planning is another one of those areas which could use all the help it can get from big data. So if that’s interesting to you, read on. Assortment planning in the age of eCommerce is a tricky business. Abstract. In today’s omnichannel environment consumers increasingly interact with assortments of the same firm across different touchpoints. In the ole catalog business the assortment is limited by paper, print-ing, and postage cost—another form of space—and inven- tory investment. Protecting your Retail Brand Against the Growing Counterfeit Threat, 50 Statistics to Understand the Online Consumer in 2020 and Beyond, Smarter Assortments Are The First Step Towards Sustainability, How to Optimize your SKUs and Enhance Sales with Online Merchandising, How to Advertise to Your Competition’s Customers When They’re Out of Stock. You can set up as many product assortments as you require. This SKU classification presents a methodical approach for assortment planning to maintain the most profitable portfolio. ASSORTMENT FASHION FORECASTING Fashion forecasting is a global career that focuses on upcoming trends. It’s made for professionals, so it … In a , retailers are starting to adopt systems rooted in big data analytics and artificial intelligence. It’s about determining customer demand and ensuring decisions are made with the customer in mind. That means figuring out the right balance of trend-forward items and older classic models that are mainstays. Simply put, the strategies for inventory assortment are meant to help business owners understand the what, where, when, who, and how much of sales. Essentially, a product assortment strategy is a retail industry sales tool with the concepts of depth and breadth at its core. An assortment is a collection of related products that you assign to a commerce channel, such as a brick-and-mortar store or an online store. Specifically, you’ll learn how to: With the current state of the retail landscape, merchants everywhere would be wise to take a long, hard look at their business models.  Generally speaking, the reason for doing so is that values are shifting. While there has been significant improvement with a customer-centric approach in the age of social media marketing and instant feedbacks, retailers are still fighting to make headway when it comes to merchandise planning- a set of interlinked decisions made months ahead of the collection’s preview. The right mix varies from brand to brand, situation to situation. offering them exactly what they want. Even if you own a single small store, you still need […], With retail transitioning into a consumer-driven business faster than ever, issues like determining the best product mix and inventory size are of strategic importance to a retailer looking to cash in at the e-commerce platforms. Because website builders provide users with a limited amount of space on their servers. But having too many different products in too many categories can be confusing and cause shoppers to have too many options where they freeze up. Or an eCommerce website you can run from the comfort of your own home? And it works, especially when it comes to the trendy stuff. And yet, too many companies fail to invest in assortment planning despite how important their assortment is. To provide the seamless experience consumers are increasingly used to, firms have to engage in omnichannel assortment planning; coordinate all aspects of their assortment … With retail transitioning into a consumer-driven business faster than ever, issues like determining the best product mix and inventory size are of strategic importance to a retailer looking to cash in at the e-commerce platforms. With two opposite approaches adopted by Topshop and J.Crew, results are equally different. SKUs and Their Relevance in Retail Merchandising You sell a large number of products in your business. Assortment planning perhaps plays an even bigger role today than ever with ever-shortening lead times, personalizations, and year-round discounts. One of Topshop’s main strengths was stocking trend-forward styles that simply didn’t stick around much on the shelves. This retail intelligence tool highlights the active approach in optimizing assortment in real-time, allowing immediate insights into the impact of increasing or decreasing certain products from the merchandise mix, managing their visibility in the marketplace and handling discounting when the times comes for it. A store's merchandise mix may also change with the seasons. The DotActiv team comprises of multiple category management experts, all lending their years of retail experience and knowledge to create well-researched and in-depth articles that inform readers of DotActiv’s retail blog. 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