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Top tips for

category reviews

You need to start your category review process at least 6 months in advance to increase the chance of a favourable outcome.


Category reviews are when retailers audit their products on shelf to see if they are getting the best return on space to ensure each product is meeting a customer need. This is an important process because it allows businesses to get rid of outdated products and replace them with new and improved ones that drive category growth and revenue.


The earlier you start, the more time you have to make necessary changes and improve your chances of getting a favourable outcome. If you wait until the last minute, you're much more likely to be stuck with excess packaging, reduced return on your plant & equipment or even worse getting deleted, significantly reducing your businesses revenue.


Here are a few tips to help you get started on your category review process:

01. Know when your category review is


This seems obvious but over half of the people we meet with don’t have a clear idea when their review is happening or when it will be implemented. You don’t shoot an arrow without a target.


02. Align your business to your review timing


Category reviews present the single biggest opportunity for your business to increase revenue and drive brand awareness, so integration is key. Alignment to category reviews means your business is able to minimise waste of any deleted products and have new products ready to launch to drive incremental growth.


03. Know your buyer and what drives them Buyers are busy. They want to know how your product will positively impact their category and help them to achieve their targets. Knowing their plan for the category and where your brand fits in will help you to bring opportunities for growth to the forefront of your discussions, cementing in the retailer's minds that your brand is future focused.


04. Support your views with data

We live in a data driven world. Customer feedback, sales rates, average basket spend, household penetration and purchase frequency are all examples of information that should support your growth plan with each retailer. Whether these data points are harvested in-house or purchased from data providers there is no excuse not to back your plans with data.

05. Master being assertive and patient


As mentioned, buyers are busy so give them a compelling reason to engage - make sure you add value to every interaction & hone the subtle art of following up.


06. Be prepared for change


Have a plan B and C. What if your product gets deleted? What if you lose shelf space? How will you counter the revenue loss across other channels? Know where the risks are and have a plan if it doesn’t go your way.


Category reviews are an important part of keeping your businesses' revenue trending up, but they can be daunting if you're not prepared for them. By following these tips and starting the process early, you can increase your chances of success and make sure that your business is ahead of the curve. If you have an upcoming category review and aren’t sure where to start, reach out to see how we can help.

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