Retail Category Consultants was engaged to help a successful small business increase sales and prepare for growth. Despite having great recognition in the community and excellent products and services, our client felt they needed better focus and integration for their day-to-day operations in order to optimize sales. After consulting with our client, we determined that they needed a defined marketing strategy and a detailed plan to execute it.
In the past, our client did not actively track who their customers were or where they came from, so we began our analysis by conducting in-store shopper observations. The customer profiles generated from the shopper observation research allowed us to identify merchandising, loyalty, and selling opportunities.
Our competitive analysis helped the client see how they were faring against stores with similar offerings, and gave us an idea of how we can establish a unique positioning in the market. A strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT) analysis was conducted to understand existing and new developments in our client’s market, which gave us enough information to create a strategy that addressed both our client’s goals and the market’s needs.
We created a marketing strategy that and defined our client’s branding and their positioning in the market. A merchandising plan was built based on proposed seasonal and event themes, and detailed how every customer touchpoint—from in-store signage to social media—should be used to support the themes.
The merchandising plan also reinforced branding by promoting our client’s house brands and catering services, which led to increased community awareness and business partnerships. To streamline operations and bring the merchandising plan to life, we created a template for an employee cheat sheet that reminded staff of the theme, customer service guidelines, and messaging.
The client loved our work and appreciated the flexibility in our ideas, which gave them enough room to exercise their entrepreneurial spirit. They have since put our recommendations into practice. This has resulted in growth that has exceeded their targets.