For many manufacturers and retailers, in-store shopper behavior is a black box. With the May 2009 release of Inside the Mind of the Shopper, Herb Sorensen lifts the lid. Analyzing millions of shopping trips on a second-by-second basis, he challenges conventional wisdom about how we shop. Among his insights:
- Retailers are leaving money in the aisles:
While most supermarkets do $10 to $20 million in sales per store, one chain has achieved $100 million in sales per store by narrowing choices and eliminating in-store navigation.
- Shoppers make small trips to big stores:
While most retail stores are designed for large stock-up shopping trips, most shopping trips and a third of dollar sales are "quick trips" for only a few items.
- The "long tail" is wagging the dog:
While retailers typically offer 30,000 to 50,000 items in their stores, most households buy 300 to 400 distinct items a year. Many retailers sacrifice the big head to the clutter of the long tail.
- Most time in stores is not spent shopping:
Shoppers only spend 20% of their time selecting purchases, and 80% in transit. Retailers need to put the products in the path of shoppers, so they can spend less time walking and more time buying.