Before there can be a “perfect store,” there must be perfect execution at the shelf. Like everything else in the consumer goods business, there is not one all- encompassing, answer as to what that means.
Perfect shelf execution is different for different stores and categories -- especially now. Stores are increasingly doubling down on specific demographic assortments, plan-o-grams, and even POP made to attract the attention of local shoppers. For example: a low cost store’s customers are only looking for the lowest price and would rather go somewhere else than pay more to ensure a product is in stock, vs. a high-end customer may abandon an entire cart if just the size of their favorite brand is not on the shelf. The smart marketing store will be self aware, and aware of its target market, and ensure that the selling floor is set up to appeal to the demographic it serves.
As a field sales or service rep, your best move is to ensure that you understand each store because you could easily travel from one extreme (in the sample above) to the other in a single day. And it would be a huge error to treat a high-end store like a low end store, and vice-versa. Additionally, some products tolerate there being just one or two items left on a shelf just fine (think a bag of charcoal), but others (think beef, chicken, or fresh veggies) do not sell well if it appears that consumers are taking the last one off the shelf.
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