One Blog |October 11, 2019 | Point-of-Sale Marketing

Three Strategies for Standing Out in an Increasingly Crowded Retail Environment

Mark Fullerton

690 Words | 5 Minute Read

 

If you’re selling beer, wine, and spirits, you know the retail landscape at all but the smallest of retail stores is already crowded and getting more so every day. Recently, I walked down the beer aisle at a large grocery store, looking for something new. There was some “floor decal” POS and it had become worn, but I still could see it was imploring me to buy Yeungling Lager. No other POS, other than on the shelf-strip below the products was evident anywhere, although there was an NFL themed display for Bud Light. I was, apparently, looking for Kona Longboard Island Lager and didn’t even know it. It was dumb luck that I actually saw the six-pack sitting ignominiously on the shelf with only the price on the shelf-strip below serving to market it.

 

I wondered if my personal occupational hazard (I like to seek POS execution at-retail) is the only reason I stumbled across Kona. The thing is, I’ve had Kona on draught – which was featured at another grocer’s “pint night” tasting soirees – and I like it. I had just never seen it at my local grocery store, Kroger. Based on the complete lack of any promotional materials, I have to assume it won’t be sold long, it doesn’t stand a chance.

 

So, without any further prologue, here are three approaches beverage-alcohol wholesalers working with retailers can adapt to stand out in a crowded market:

 

  1. Inspire Shoppers with POS Marketing

 

Point-of-sale marketing has been in use for at least 100 years. It is – due to the explosion of cable-TV channels and DVRs that encourage fast-forwarding through commercials – even more relevant than ever. But 2019 and beyond demand something new from POS.  Although price is a key piece of information for POS to convey, successful beverage brands/products attract, surprise, inform and connect with shoppers.

 

  1. Make Shopping Fun

 

Increasingly, shoppers – especially for adult beverages – consider their retail shopping experiences to be social experiences. More and more grocers and other retailers who sell bev-alc are adding bars and tasting events to their beer, wine and spirits departments making it both easy and fun to linger over their selection of the right wine or the right selection of beers for an upcoming party or just for watching the week’s big game. Strategically placed POS can alert and direct shoppers to such “social opportunities.”

 

  1. Save Shopper’s Time (with POS)

 

It’s almost impossible to deny that retailing is continuing to undergo change – some of it quite painful, due in no small part to the impact of “omnichannel” retailing which is relentlessly encroaching even on beverage-alcohol retailing. Large retail outlets continue spend aggressively to reinforce their image as a destination (even as they provide e-commerce solutions to assure their customers they don’t really need to come into the store). Kroger and Giant Eagle, among others, for example, have enlarged many of their stores and continue to add amenities and entertainment to make shopping in-store enticing (see “Make Shopping Fun”). Still shoppers’ time is often at a premium, so it is important that distributors work with their retail customers to help their shoppers (the retailer’s customers) save time. As stores continue to grow in size – and as they seem to be perpetually rearranging their stores’ interior layouts – in-store shopping can take longer meaning some shoppers run out of patience since finding brands and products simply take too long.

 

With beverage-alcohol, beer, for example, POS can be deployed to inform shoppers regarding “new beers,” new locations, or simply point them to the IPA or dark beer selections they’re looking for. Shoppers can then spend a bit more time deciding than in hunting.

Of course, a critical component of deploying any or all of these strategies is being able to track what you’ve done with your POS, measure its effectiveness and your POS’s ROI, thus allowing you to manage and organize your POS spending for maximum effect: Sales and Market-share gains.

 

We have tools that can help. Call us at 513-936-4041 to arrange a demo of PermaTrak, SignTrak, MenuTrak or SampleTrak, the premier software solutions to help you and your POS stand out in an increasingly crowded market.

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