If you’re a small to mid-sized consumer packaged goods (CPG) manufacturer, you can use retail sales data with a competitive insights lens to get the edge you need to enter the market, fuel growth faster and go head-to-head with even the longest-standing players in your product category.
Here are five ways you can use retail sales data with competitive insights to get a leg up on your competition.
1. Tell a Better Story
The right data can help you communicate a more robust sell-in story to show retailers how your product fits into the category and market at large. Data can also help you prove to buyers why your product deserves a spot on their shelf. For instance, you might be able to show that one of your competitor’s products is cannibalizing volume from a buyer’s private label at a given price point, negatively impacting your buyer’s higher-margin items. This is an extremely powerful story to take to your buyer—showing that your product (which won’t cannibalize their private-label sales) is more valuable to them than your competitor’s.
2. Control the Message to CPG Buyers
Retailers are inundated with the same messages from large manufacturers all the time, and your competitors could already have your buyer’s ear. Here’s where you can use data to combat their claims and their narrative. For example, let’s say your buyer believes a competitor is performing well at a particular price point and encourages you to price your product similarly. In this situation, because you have historical pricing data at your disposal, you’re able to dispel this assumption that matching the competition’s price is indeed the best move. Instead, you justify to the buyer that your price point will work and, as a result, become a trusted partner—all because you went the extra mile to use industry-approved third-party information to inform your price change.
3. Get Insight Into Individual CPG Channels
If you have up-to-the-minute trending data that shows what’s happening in a retailer’s various store locations, you can identify a winning distribution strategy more effectively. Let’s say you’re trying to get your product into a new channel at Retailer X. Accessing account-level data lets you see how similar products are priced on- and off-promotion at Retailer X. This allows you to confidently negotiate a pricing and promotion strategy that’s tailored to that individual retailer. And now you (and your new buyer) can be more confident in your product’s ability to sell.
4. Align Product With Consumer Demographics
Ensuring that your product speaks to consumers within each individual channel is critical. Imagine Retailer Y is planning to put your product into 15 stores. But before they do, you want to be sure to have some say in the decision. So how do you find out which locations are best for both the retailer and your brand? You need to know who your product’s consumer is and examine the consumer demographics across each of Retailer Y’s stores. Then you can go back to Retailer Y with active recommendations for the 15 stores where you believe your product will satisfy consumer demand and drive sales for both the retailer and your brand. Then you’ll not only drive sales, but you’ll set yourself apart from the competition and win over your buyers because you took the initiative to make recommendations that were backed by third-party data.
5. Set Better Growth Goals
Effectively setting growth goals is a key component of staying ahead of the competition. This process starts with having a reliable source of market and performance data. The right data helps you set the right goal from the beginning so you can stay focused on achieving that goal. For example, let’s say that you want to increase your product’s velocity in a specific channel by 1% (note: velocity is a measure of sales and distribution to determine how fast your product moves off the shelf). You can use data that both shows the size of your market and the potential of the category and the competition to ensure that your goal is both realistic and attainable.
So how can you get a leg up on your competition? Data.
Using retail sales data with competitive insights in these five ways will help you:
- Tell a better sell-in story
- Control the message to CPG buyers
- Get insight into individual CPG channels
- Align product with consumer demographics
- Set better growth goals
If you’re looking to give your CPG product the edge it needs to beat your competition, identifying a trusted data partner is the place to start. Nielsen helps small and midsized CPG manufacturers compete through affordable, easy-to-use, retailer-preferred measurement data.