In this 2020 that we leave behind, many things have happened, too many, and our stores have been the main protagonists of all these changes and evolutions. Since Hispanic supermarkets have established themselves as a source of service, quality, and trust in our communities, it is time to establish our own image and vision for our customers.
Our stores are synonymous with proximity, specialization, strengthening relationships with our customers, offering extended hours, and personalized services such as home delivery or collection in the store. It’s time to focus on something as key as the assortment.
We call assortment all the variety of products that we sell in each of our stores, and the sole and exclusive choice we make of the assortments will be the total profitability of our business.
The assortment also defines us with the image and personality of the type of supermarket that we are. Width + Depth + Length of the assortment is the basis of our success.
To understand it better, the breadth is the number of categories that we have; the depth is the number of articles that we handle by category, and the length is the total number of articles that we work on per store or chain.
I want to add the last ingredient, the “coherence” of the assortment, and this is where, according to our vision, we will offer our customers the assortment that they seek every time they visit us.
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From here, and considering the type of supermarket we manage (traditional, deeply discounted, organic, premium), we will define the principles for making the assortment. And more and more retailers are joining the so-called era of smart assortments, which are those that are not contaminating the purchase decision of our customers, offering a sufficiently fair and necessary range adapted to the needs of today’s consumers.
The efficiency with which we build these smart assortments will be the key to optimizing our business’s profitability in each category of the product catalog.
It is not time to fill the gondolas with what manufacturers want, but with products that our customers need, which can be very different from the first.
The construction of the assortment of a category is not possible without adequate knowledge of our loyal customers’ purchasing habits. Once this is defined, we now have to look for the ideal number of references (products) that we will have per store, where in addition to the already traditional methods such as the historical Pareto Principle of 20/80, we have to go further and think locally, our “proximity,” our customers, also taking into account our actual physical sales spaces and what differentiates us from the closest competition.
In this 2021, which must and must be that of global recovery, our choice of references for supermarkets at a general level must be very realistic today, made up of leading brands supported by our private brands as a savings option.
Basically, these two lines will be 90% of the total assortment, and depending on the location or type of supermarket we will complement that remaining 10% with an offer of added value assortment.
With the entire smart assortment already defined for this year, I propose these 5 control and monitoring tools:
- Control of the needs coverage rate: maintain the quality level of the assortment.
- Market share and consumption: regular updates without losing the freshness of the assortment.
- Performance of the brands.
- Financial analysis: control of margins and stocks.
- Cleanliness of the assortment: if the above points are not met, you should not continue the product.