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Kyle DorflingMay 18, 2015 3:55:59 PM2 min read

How Category Management Creates an Amazing Shopping Experience

Successful retailers have one thing in common: they always offer an amazing shopping experience. There are so many things that, when added together, result in either a good or bad shopping experience. In this blog we discuss some of the ways that category management has a fantastic impact on what consumers will experience while visiting your stores.

Category management is essentially the discipline of managing product categories as individual strategic business units with each category having its own separate revenue and profitability targets. 

How shoppers experience stores has become one of the most important differentiating factors for retailers. The result is that there is a huge drive towards enriching the experience of a store visit.

Here are some of the ways category management helps create an amazing shopping experience:

1. Shoppers will enjoy an attractive product selection

Localised assortment planning is a big part of category management and is focussed on making the right products available in the right stores and at the right time. When visiting a store all your shopper's favourite products (plus some pleasant surprises) will be available. The below is an example of some of the metrics (taken from CatMan Lite) that retail professionals use to create attractive assortments:



2. The store won't seem as busy as it really is

There's nothing worse than shopping when a store is too busy. If a store's floor is planned well then shoppers won't experience intense congestion during peak hours.

Floor planners use specialised floor planning software to create heat mapped floor plans with the aim of optimising shopper traffic. This leads to an improved shopping experience and financial performance. See the heat mapped floor plan example below: 



3. Shoppers won't be waiting for other shoppers to choose a product

Know the feeling: when you are trying to choose a product and you have another shopper behind you waiting to grab a view of the shelf? If there are too many options of a product type on a shelf then people end up taking long to choose an item and sometimes don't choose at all. Smart assortment's and planograms help reduce the likeliness of this happening. 



4. Logical product flows make it easier for shoppers to find products on their list

Space planners use planograms to map out where products should go (see the planogram example above) and how much space they should get.

Space planners also plan the product flows in a way that is logical so that shoppers can easily navigate around the store and find what's on their list.

5. Great specials and promotions

Successful retailers are continuously offering exciting new promotions. These promotions offer new and known products at discounted prices. Shoppers see these promotions on gondola ends, shelf hotspots and other convenient areas. 

6. No more out of stocks

Planograms ensure consistency in terms of the days of supply for a number of products on a shelf. This makes the shelf replenishment cycle much easier, resulting in reduced out of stocks which drive shoppers crazy.

There's is no doubt that a good category management strategy will help create a great in-store experience.


Kyle Dorfling

Kyle joined DotActiv in 2009. He gained experience across multiple facets of the business before his appointment as Acting CEO in 2021.