The Necessary and Long Overdue Re-invention of 'Center Store' - June 19, 2017
Most of us would agree that over the past twenty years the lion's share of the focus and creativity within the supermarket has occurred on the perimeter of store. This is true for a number of reasons...
How Failure Spawns Success; (in retail, as well as elsewhere) - February 14, 2017
There are two former Views that are essential in understanding the role of retailing, free enterprise and capitalism in driving the growth of the prosperity of the whole of society... What we want to do here, is to knit together the content of those two issues...
Counting to One - January 2, 2017
In the interests of providing some historical perspective, I'm sharing this article I wrote in 1982. Lest you think this was very forward thinking, bear in mind that the July-August 1980 issue of the Harvard Business Review had an article titled, "Retailing Without Stores,"...
Accelerated Merchandising, LLC, Announces Release of "Inside the Mind of the Shopper," Second Edition - October 17, 2016
Dr. Herb Sorensen announces the release of "Inside the Mind of the Shopper, Second Edition." This second edition serves as a sequel to Dr. Sorensen's first edition of "Inside the Mind of the Shopper," (2009 Wharton Press), a provocative, top-selling book that introduced the concept of "active retailing" based on 30 plus years of in-store research.
"Crowd-Social-Nudge" Selling - April 25, 2016
After nearly a lifetime of selling, studying selling, and studying the minutest details of how shoppers buy, I am here outlining what is probably the very best way to sell to shoppers, for self-service (serve yourself) retailers and their suppliers.
Seeing Shopping Again for the Very First Time - August 2, 2015
Occasionally one has the opportunity to see a convergence of earlier ideas that bring into sharper focus the subject at hand. This is the case with this issue of the Views, which converges 3 earlier ideas, to clarify the proper way to see shopping from a strictly scientific point of view...
How To Observe, Measure And Think About Shoppers - Updated March 12, 2015
I realize that I am not the only one who uses the term "shopper science," but when I use it, I am perhaps using it in a little different way. The purpose of this Views is to essentially lay out a perceptual framework, my working definition of "shopper science."
The Problem: "Parked" Capital - September 30, 2014
A brief definition of "parked" capital: It is simply capital that is not being productively employed, or more realistically, is producing only a tiny fraction of what it could be producing...
Five Reasons Your Store Might Sell Five Times as Much! (and what if it only sold twice as much?) - June 5, 2014
Reasonable people are likely to be skeptical that they could sell five times as much in their store(s). You should be skeptical. But it can be done...
From Opportunity to Final Purchase - March 24, 2014
As a follow-on to the previous issue, The Incredibly Shrinking (In-Store) "Audience", this issue of the Views reads the shoppers' minds by looking through the shoppers' own eyes during the final purchase process.
The Incredibly Shrinking (In-Store) "Audience" - February 24, 2014
From my very earliest days of measuring shoppers paths around stores, second by second (PathTracker®,) a MAJOR interest has been on the store itself as an advertising medium...
Retail "Spoons" - January 26, 2014
The purpose of this Views is to alert you to some features of the global retail game that bear an amazing similarity to Spoons, an ancient childhood game...
Google's Original X-Man. A Conversation With Sebastian Thrun - December 3, 2013
I have often explained to correspondents that my perspective is always pushing in two directions...
Selling Like Amazon... in Bricks & Mortar Stores! - October 25, 2013
The super-efficient Amazonian selling process can be broken into five steps of moving the mind of the shopper from interest to the close of the sale.
The Age of Plenty - July 22, 2013
This issue of the Views is to help you meet the challenge of remaining an optimist, without being a Pollyanna.
Getting Physical - Online Retailers Move Offline - June 10, 2013
I have been taking an integrated view of all the components of retail for some time. This has led to touting the growing Convergence of Online, Mobile and Bricks (COMB) retailing. It was a delight to read an outstanding report on this phenomena published in Chain Store Age, and by special permission we reprint here the article in full.
Press Release: AMA & AMA Foundation Announce 2013 Parlin Award Recipient - May 14, 2013
CHICAGO, IL - May 14, 2013 - The Parlin Board of Governors, as an entity of the American Marketing Association (AMA) and the American Marketing Association Foundation (AMAF), announce Herb Sorensen, Adjunct Senior Research Fellow at the Ehrenberg-Bass Institute for Marketing Science, University of South Australia, as the recipient of the 2013 Charles Coolidge Parlin Marketing Research Award.
Retailing: the Trojan Horse of Global Freedom and Prosperity - April 5, 2013
With this issue of the Views I offer a broader view of retailing than is perhaps common. But I think it is important, because too many times there is a failure to appreciate the grandness of the enterprises we pursue.
Whisper, Don't Shout (or mumble!) - January 4, 2013
With this issue of the Views we will pursue further how to train shoppers to buy, in either a cacophonous, or a "silent" marketplace.
What you do not measure... you will NOT manage! - September 11, 2012
This issue of the Views is, as usual, fact and data driven. Beginning a decade ago, we recognized that much of the shopper behavior we were measuring was not being cognitively driven. That is, the shoppers themselves were really unaware of their own behavior, instinctive and habitual as it was.
"Googling" the Store - June 11, 2012
We have documented repeatedly that shoppers waste as much as 80% of their time in the store, and this wasted time represents the potential for large increases in sales for those who learn to leverage it, whether retailers or their suppliers.
Efficiency & Convenience: An Introduction to "The Third Wave" of Retailing - March 20, 2012
Efficiency and convenience are the flip sides of the same coin, that created retail at the dawn of history, with vast increases over the past 100 years. There is good reason to believe we are on the verge of a five-fold acceleration of efficiency, convenience and retailing!
The Store (Component of the Science of Shopping) - December 28, 2011
This issue of the Views delves further into the relationship of shoppers to the store. To do this it helps to put this into the context of science and shopping, and how to think about the 5 major entities of shopping.
"How to Close Every Sale" (Commentary on Joe Girard's book) - October 6, 2011
Whenever a customer acquires something, with a commitment to pay for it, a sale occurs. In every case, this is a culmination of a series of external stimuli for the customer, with a parallel interior mental path for the customer. In general, we can divide all the sales in the world into two classes...
Three Purchase States (Modes of Purchase Hypothesis) - August 21, 2011
There is a sense in which every single purchase, of every single item, by every single shopper, is a unique event, distinct from every other purchase. To understand these global trillions of unique events, annually, we look for similarities so that we can group them into something smaller than trillions of buckets.
The Dinner Party in the Pantry - June 20, 2011
With the growth and prosperity of free markets over the past 100 years, a plethora of merchandise has been developed by a very large number of suppliers, hoping to reach shoppers and fill at least some part of their voracious needs and wants.
How to Sell the Few, Among the Many? - May 9, 2011
How to sell the few? The question itself goes a long way toward answering itself, by specifying "the few."
Deciding What to SELL! - April 24, 2011
If we want to sell a lot of anything, we should be thinking about what people buy a lot of.
If you build it, they will NOT come! - March 2, 2011
If you build [a much larger store,] they will NOT come [to all the displays inside.]
Sell to Their "Shopping Lists" (Tell’em Which to Buy!) - December 12, 2010
This issue of the Views provides further insight on how and why you can use the dominant path through the store to increase sales. So we want to focus here first on "what each shopper wants, or may buy," and will use an expanded view/definition of the "shopping list" to encompass exactly this – what the shopper wants or may buy.
Tell 'em Where to Go; Tell 'em Which to Buy! - October 4, 2010
Recently I circulated a Views titled "The 'Path-to-Purchase' is Often a U-Turn." In order to get the full value of this issue, you should be familiar with the content of that issue. (Others, such as "The Misguided Bobbing of the Long Tail," would also be very helpful.)
The "Path-to-Purchase" is Often a U-Turn - March 27, 2010
When shoppers enter a store, they will often make their way to the back of the store. At that point, most often they will turn left and shortly thereafter, take another left, and return to the front of the store for checkout and exit - effectively creating a U-turn path.
Elemental Retailing - March 5, 2010
A review of some retail fundamentals can provide both retailers and their suppliers with important help in the search for opportunities for expanding business – “outside the box".
Opportunities in the Traditional Trade of Emerging Markets - December 6, 2009
Four billion people live on less than two dollars a day in the developing world. For those of us who are familiar with the sophistication of modern retailing, it is easy to forget that the vast majority of people around the world still shop in far simpler stores.
The Amazonian Ghost - July 31, 2009
In the movie Ghost, with Patrick Swayze and Demi Moore, we see the spectral Swayze trying to reach his real world lover, by the power of the mind.
This is not totally unlike the problem that the modern self-service retailer faces.
The Misguided Bobbing of the Long Tail - July 28, 2009
After presenting some stark data about the long tail, I will explain why it is so valuable.
No, the Customer is NOT Always Right! - July 23, 2009
Quite a number of successful retailers, over the years, have attributed a significant measure of their success to the principle that, "The customer is always right."
Breaking the Habit - (Siemon Scammell-Katz) July 15, 2009
Decisions that are really important, like choice of a car, are made consciously. Secondary decisions often involve regular purchases where ‘choice’ is habituated.
Mid-Caps: Break Out of the Pack - May 11, 2009
End-caps are the powerhouses of any store, generating 20% of all store sales and featuring only 1% of the SKUs. How about the Mid-cap?
So Just What IS a "Quick Trip?" - March 26, 2009
What seems simple and obvious on the surface is not nearly so simple in reality.
Changing the Habits of a Lifetime - (Siemon Scammell-Katz) March 12, 2009
Shoppers’ decisions, whether in-store, at home or on the Clapham omnibus, aren’t based on the decision tree model.
Zero Based Retailing - February 22, 2009
Sometimes it is better to sweep all away (conceptually,) and begin anew from scratch.
Deconstructing the Shopping Trip (so far!) - February 1, 2009
"So far!" because the schema is evolving, and unless you are well advanced, this wouldn't be a bad place to begin.
Don't Talk At All! (Or, Eliza Goes Shopping!) - December 26, 2008
We have always relied on words to help us sell in the belief that creative wordsmithing is influential. But it is not. - Siemon Scamell-Katz
Selling vs. Order Taking - December 4, 2008
The sales person "closes early and closes often" - while the order taker plays a more passive role.
"Average" Quicksand - December 2, 2008
What is the average sex of humans? Applying the concept of "average" to shopping can be distorting.
Shopper Efficiency vs. Total Store Sales - November 14, 2008
Sorensen's First Rule of Retailing: The faster you sell, the more you will sell!
3-D Purchasing - November 12, 2008
As it turns out, the purchase decision, may not be a decision at all!
The Three Faces of PathTracker® - October 14, 2008
Millions of shopping trips, studied on a second by second basis, since 2001, are the basis of these Views.
Evolving Brands and Retailers - October 13, 2008
Of the three values that shoppers pay for, only two are readily duplicated.
The Aisleness of Stores - August 16, 2008
It's all about how much of the store is dedicated to products and how much is dedicated to shoppers.