The continued proliferation of online shopping makes it imperative for merchants to harness in-depth shopper information for more efficient marketing, pricing and offers, as well as overall merchandising and assortment planning.
BevMo!, a specialty beverage retailer, is addressing these goals head-on with several new solutions to achieve customer centricity across its business, Bob Graham, VP of IT for BevMo!, told Retail TouchPoints.
“Pricing and promotions are two of the key areas that we wanted to attack,” Graham said. “We recognize that we must be more nimble, now more than ever, and tackle new opportunities.”
As part of its head-on attack, BevMo! has entered a three-year partnership with Revionics, a provider of merchandising solutions, in which BevMo! will implement multiple Revionics tools. These include Price Optimization, which provides base price management; Promotion Optimization, to improve overall promotion planning and success; and Store Clustering Analysis, to ensure more efficient price alignment across its 118 brick-and-mortar stores.
This approach will allow BevMo! “to become more intelligent in pricing strategies in order to delight customers, while remaining a cost-effective and solid competitor in our marketplace,” Graham explained. “At the end of the day, it’s all about having the right product, at the correct price, at the right location, which opens the door to the best way to interact with our customers.” Moreover, BevMo! will be able to determine the impact of specific pricing decisions, said Graham, and pinpoint demand based on specific market locations and conditions.
BevMo! has been moving from disparate systems to more integrated, Software- and Hardware-as-a-Service technology adoptions since 2010: the merchant has implemented a new POS platform, real-time data warehouse, and a vendor portal, all attuned to principles set forth by NRF’s Association for Retail Technology Standards (ARTS). Revionics’ compliance with ARTS ensures that all data can be exchanged between applications more quickly and securely.
“Our flexible, ARTS-based POS platform allows us to leverage more advanced marketing strategies,” Graham explained. “It only made sense to enhance it with technologies that allow us to receive intelligence pricing, promtions and store clustering analysis.”
Marrying The Art And Science Of Price And Promotions
To ensure shopper satisfaction, best-in-class retailers are taking a two-pronged approach to pricing and merchandising, according to Karen Dutch, Senior Vice President of Marketing for Revionics. This strategy ensures retailers keep prices consistent across channels, but also aligns with customers’ expectations based on specific locations.
“In today’s rapidly changing, hyper-competitive marketplace, pricing strategies need to evolve,” Dutch said. “Retailers that understand their shoppers’ behaviors better than the competition, and evolve their pricing and promotion strategies with this knowledge, are winning in the marketplace. Predictive analytics and demand-based science ensure that retailers’ prices are right and their shopper-relevant promotions are profitable.”
As BevMo! continues to expand its portfolio of solutions, the merchant will take multiple measures to better understand and tap into customer preferences across channels. However, the company’s success will rely largely on its ability to marry customer information with other data, Graham explained.
“We’re learning how to exploit the data in our warehouse, and currently are utilizing advanced marketing solutions to create a better customer experience and determine the right products for specific locations,” Graham said. “This will allow us to marry the art and science of pricing and promotions more efficiently.”