Progressive Grocer

DEC 2015

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around the country that are integrating [the] chilled section into center store aisles and end caps. I have seen thematic end aisle displays that demonstrate artistic merchandising with fair. I have also noticed how exceptionally rare they can be." To make sure center store remains meaningful, Rand insists: "Better and more creative uses of space and lighting will be needed to highlight and draw shopper attention. Shelves need to communicate 'better' to shoppers — here again, Kroger is experi- menting at the front of the industry. And good re- tailers are beginning to realize that the center store is not just competing with other center store ofers — it competes for the attention of a generation that fnds online shopping to be convenient, informative and reliable. If the store is not a better experience than a website is easy, it isn't good enough." Naturally enough, CPG companies are well placed to ofer hands-on assistance to grocers eager to improve their center stores. "We are currently working with retailers to increase the engagement of beverages in center store," says Coca-Cola's Basciani. "Tis initiative leverages insights as to how shoppers shop the store, how they buy beverages and what the barriers are today that prevent them from coming down the aisle. We are partnering with retailers to implement new ways to organize the category to make it easier for shoppers to fnd what they are looking for — be it their favorite brands and pack- ages or new propositions available in the market." Te initiative consists of two key elements: the aisle itself and the end cap. "Our research fndings on center store have highlighted the importance of the end cap in engaging perimeter shoppers," explains Basciani. "Terefore, our strategy is to modify our approach to activate these two points of inspiration to engage shoppers more efectively and increase beverage conversion with our customers." Coca-Cola's research has uncovered that "shoppers have four primary demands of retailers: save them time, make it quick and easy to fnd things in the store, help them get what they want, and give them ideas for meals, snacks and more," she notes. "Meeting these evolving expectations will require a variety of tactics that assume a comprehensive view and understanding of the shopper experience. For one, we see the oppor- tunity to evolve the way we present beverages in center store, based on how the shoppers shop for beverages, creating a more compelling and rewarding experience for consumers and retailers alike." PG The conventional supermarket center store is what we might describe as efficiently dull. If we want to get a better experience, we have to open it up to being a better visual environment, to be a better merchandising platform again." —John Rand, Kantar Retail A N N U A L FEBRUARY 21 – 23, 2016 GAYLORD OPRYLAND RESORT & CONVENTION CENTER NASHVILLE, TN REGISTER TODAY!

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