Bridgethorne: FMCG suppliers need better insight for a multi-channel Christmas

Nevens: better insight required

Nevens: better insight required

Asda’s prediction up to 75% of its customers are likely to shop across stores and online channels at Christmas reinforces the importance for FMCG suppliers to better understand shopper behaviour before, at and after arrival at the point of purchase, wherever that may be, according to category management specialist Bridgethorne.

“Asda is suggesting – and we believe they are right – there is a steady and sustained move towards multi-channel shopping,” said John Nevens, director of Bridgethorne.

“Asda’s own figures suggest multi-channel rising from 57% of shoppers in Christmas 2012 and 29% in 2011.

“There are clear implications in this trend suppliers need to better understand the journey shoppers take to get to the point of purchase. That journey will be different, with different motivations and different priorities, whether it finishes in-store, with a click and collect purchase or simply made from the comfort of their own laptop. It may also be different whether it is at a convenience store, a supermarket or a hypermarket. Suppliers are not yet doing enough to understand and influence the factors the impact on a shopper’s decision to buy at the point where their products meet potential shoppers.”

Nevens argues with the emergence of different demographic groups – older shoppers, single household shoppers etc – as well as those driven by convenience or economic imperatives as well as the different channel formats, suppliers and retailers need to structure their marketing activation activity as well as their new product development around insights in to actual shopper behaviour rather than perceived consumer demands.

Nevens said this means using insights on real shopper behaviour to inform a supplier’s shopper marketing strategy both online and in-store. This will include identifying the right mechanics that are going to resonate with those shoppers as part of your activation plan.

Understanding the point of purchase interface is critical to success. Bridgethorne claims it helps suppliers understand both the product and shopper journey to the point of purchase. In so doing Bridgethorne claims it adds value to both the supplier and the retailer by helping clients achieve a more informed and constructive working relationship with the retailer.