Update 3: Product and Merchandising Tracker September 2016
Debenhams’ fragrance range showed the biggest improvement in the Merchandising Deployment analysis, moving up three places to occupy second place in September’s Product and Merchandising Tracker. Tesco tops the Merchandising Deployment table for the second month in a row while Boots leads the biggest discounters table in September. The Tracker monitors the merchandising deployment and discount strategies of 27 Elite and Leading [http://internetretailing.net/iruk/the-uks-top-500-ecommerce-retailers/] Top500 retailers across six product categories and is updated regularly. Companies operating in the Grocery and Fragrance sectors were leading the field for merchandising deployment between August and September (see table 1). The fragrance retailer Debenhams rank rose by three places over the month due to such factors as an increase of the fraction of its products with reviews by 26 percent. Tesco, for the second month in a row, leads the Merchandising Deployment analysis, which measures the fraction of missing product videos, missing product description, and the number of images per product, in addition to other metrics. The share of the supermarket’s range that lacked images and descriptions dropped by 3.7 and 2.4 percentage points, respectively, in September compared to August.
Table 1: Merchandising Deployment Leaders – September 2016
|Retailer|| Sector||Position change: August to September|
|1||Tesco ||Grocery|| -|
|2||Debenhams ||Fragrance||↑ 3|
|3||Ocado ||Grocery||↓ 1|
|4||Boots ||Fragrance||↓ 1|
|5||Sainsbury's ||Grocery||↓ 1|
|Taking account of the percentage of range with reviews, descriptions, product videos, and images; and the average number of images per product.|
Table 2: Moving Up the Ranks in Merchandising Deployment – September 2016
Half of the six Grocery retailers analysed by the Product and Merchandising Tracker reduced the proportion of missing product descriptions on their websites between August and September. Eighty percent of Grocery retailers analysed by the Product and Merchandising Tracker reduced the proportion of missing product descriptions on their websites between July and September.
|Retailer||Improvement rank: August to September|
|2||Currys ||↑ 3|
|3||Appliances Direct||↑ 2|
|4||Mothercare ||↑ 2|
|5||Toys Я Us ||↑ 2|
Sixty percent of Grocery retailers increased the fraction of their product range that feature reviews over the same time period. The average grocery retailer included in our study now has 53 percent of its products reviewed. Waitrose , over the one-month period of August, saw the largest increase in the share of its products with reviews - from 53 to 56 percent.
The Grocery sector was, however, hit by the UK’s decision to leave the European Union. “Wholesale prices increased for some of the brand suppliers such as Unilever”, says Chris Elliott, insight analyst at Brand View . Yet, average depth of price cut increased in the last month for 83 percent of Grocery retailers, suggesting that supermarkets are trying to maintain competitive pricing.
Debenhams and Currys were the biggest improvers in the Merchandising Deployment analysis. Currys offers nearly 14 percent more products with customer reviews and a reduced fraction of products - from 69% to 79% that were out of stock in September compared to August. Currys offers nearly 5 percent more products with customer reviews and a reduced fraction of products - from 76% to 79% that were out of stock in September compared to July.
Table 3: The Biggest Discounters – September 2016
Most Fragrance retailers decreased percentage of products on promotion compared to August. One noticeable increase, however, comes from Debenhams, which offered nearly 98 percent of its fragrance products on promotion. The department store offered the highest number of promotions in the month of September compared to the other Fragrance retailers included in this study. Despite the share of products on promotion declining for Fragrance retailers, they had the highest average depth of cut of any sector covered by the Tracker.Appliances Direct had the largest share of products on promotion in September of any retailer included in this study. The average retailer in the DIY sector increased the fraction of its products on promotion and increased, also, the average depth of price cut between August and September. Screwfix led the way, more than doubling its total number of promotions and the average depth of price cut over the period. B&Q offered the highest share of products on promotion in September and Homebase, the highest average depth of price cut.
|Retailer||Sector||Position change: August to September|
|2||Superdrug ||Fragrance||↓ 1|
|4||Appliances Direct ||Appliances||↓ 1|
|5||Hughes Electrical ||Appliances, Electrical||↓ 1|
|Taking account of the percentage of products on promotion and the average depth of cut.|
About the Product and Merchandising TrackerInternetRetailing partners with Brand View to analyse the approach to discounting and product display adopted by the UK’s top retailers across six categories of retail. The tracker covers products in the Appliances, DIY, Electrical, Fragrance, Grocery, and Toys sectors. The index is updated periodically.