You do. Understanding how your customer shops is KEY to setting your floor to optimize sales. Having merchandise presented the way your customer shops will lead to a great in-store experience, allow your floor to act as a silent seller and help you sell through more merchandise at full price.
Item driven shoppers are just that. They come in looking for a particular item, for example a coated steel hoof pick. This shopper will want to see the hoof picks by material. This way the shopper can quickly find the individual item they are looking for. Customer Statement: "I'm looking for a coated steel hoof pick."
Hoof Picks are a product category with various types of offerings - economy, metal, plastic, multi-use, etc. A category shopper comes into your store for a hoof pick . He/she wants to see your total hoof pick selection - all makes, models and prices that you have. He/she will then choose the dream pick from those. For this shopper, I suggest grouping by material first, plastic or metal. Customer Statement: "I need a hoof pick."
Brand shoppers are loyal to products from one or more brands. In our hoof pick example, this customer will want a Tail Tamer's hoof pick. This customer will prefer you merchandise the Hoof Pick category by brand with each model from that brand grouped together - coated steel, soft touch, economy. Customer Statement: "I'm looking for a Tail Tamer's coated steel hoof pick."
What's the best way to find out how your customer shops? Observation. Create a simple tick box system for your staff and run an observation for a week or two. Selections will be Item, Category and Brand. Have your staff place a tick under the appropriate selection when they either observe, overhear, or interact with a customer. After a week or so, you should see a hierarchy developing. NOTE: You may need to do this exercise for different larger categories, for example one for people clothes, one for horse clothes, one for horse accessories, etc.
With the hierarchy in place, you can set your categories to serve the majority of your shoppers. For example, if you find your hoof pick customer is brand driven first, you will set the hoof pick category by brand, then by individual models within the brand. All Tail Tamer's together. All Roma together. All Jack's together. And so on.
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