Cross Selling analytics (KPIs) and the specific usage of analytic results in visual merchandising, promotion or product placement is only the obvious part in bringing cross selling know-how to the sales floor. It can be very challenging to drive visual merchandising on the pure analytical or KPI results (esp. from association analysis). Often there is an intersection in results or a confusion of cause and effect. Prioritization is difficult and can lead to a real mismatch and refusal of cross selling evaluations.
“Consumer needs are much more than the sum of single items shopped”
Based on this slogan the idea or concept of “the consumer story or need (emergence view) for cross selling” is a very important instrument to get the right clue to transform an analytical cross selling result (thousands of rules or itemsets) into the right actions (product placement or visual merchandising).
To widen the scope of cross selling it is important to include a perspective of the integrated consumer need – you can call this a consumer story (or emergence) when working with cross-selling analytical results. The consumer story “describes the holistic or integrated view” on consumer buying behavior or initial need and has to match each valid rule or itemset to a possible consumer behavior or intend to buy certain items together. Examples for “consumer stories” can be:
- Baking a pizza
- Cooking a meal
- Having a party with friends
- Curing a cold
- Getting fit for sports
- Dressing up in style X
Knowing that there is a driving need or a valid “consumer story” makes it easy to be creative when deriving actions on product placement, visual merchandising or promotion definition. If the consumer story behind is missed, the consumer is possibly misdirected and left on his own searching through a traditional product placement strategy (brand, block, vertical, horizontal – item placement).
It is not easy because there is some kind of overlap in each “story” (you can use flour or butter for many different things or “stories”). So there is possibly a taxonomy of stories or higher category of story to follow. But using the analytical results of cross selling analysis it is easy to find out where the priorities in the “local consumer stories” are and you will get a clear hint if you show or place a product in a second – focused “cross selling” – placement.
Example (from one store):
- Flour – tomato sauce – olive oil (Lift values > 4)
- Flour – baking powder – ingredients for different cakes (Lift values < 4)
You may focus on the relevant cross selling (measured through analysis) occurred in a local shop or store.
Understand the consumer, be creative and the consumer will reward your efforts!