Video: Understanding category demand in the wake of COVID-19

As we begin to emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic, there are important learning lessons all retailers and suppliers must take in order to understand how demand is changing and where consumers are changing their purchases.

In this video, Symphony RetailAI’s Head of Category Planning Gina Hargrave explores the changing customer demand, and how this can impact your assortment planning process – do you need to consider expanding your category, or focus on SKU rationalization?

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  • Read Video Transcript

    Shopping yesterday got me thinking how are retailers better going to understand their customers coming out of COVID-19? Best way I can relate this to you is via my own shopping experience.

    About a month ago, I bought some dish soap. It was a value brand. It wasn’t a brand that I normally buy, and I got it home, I used it. I didn’t really like it. I went back a couple of weeks later, thought I’d check the shelf, see if this store had been restocked on the brand that I preferred. And yet again, they had not been restocked, but the value brand was still on the shelf.

    So, as a retailer, if you had the ability to analyze and understand in a pandemic, even when people are in a panicked mode, what was the last 10 – 15 items that were left on the shelf that they did not even purchase? Maybe those are items that you should eliminate completely going forward. Or, adversely, what were those top 10 or 15 items that blew off the shelf immediately and you needed to continue to restock? Maybe you need to expand your product offering in those particular areas or eliminate other products so that you have better holding power for the items that your customers really prefer.

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