Entries by Scott Sanders

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Three Tools to Make Your Discounts Count

We were meeting in our wood-paneled boardroom. I was part of a broker team hosting business planning sessions between a major Northeastern supermarket and a few dozen of our CPG manufacturer clients. During one session, a large beverage manufacturer suddenly announced that they were going to drastically cut the depth and breadth of their discounts. […]

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New Research: How Consumer Attitudes Have Changed Toward the Amazon-ified Whole Foods

Source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/southbeachcars/36475628760 On June 15, 2017, my phone showed a news alert that Amazon had agreed to buy Whole Foods. I was not anticipating this and it inspired my imagination, as it did for millions of others who took to social media to talk about it. Jeff Bezos: “Alexa, buy me something from Whole Foods.” […]

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What Amazon means for Whole Foods’ core values (and how it’s connected to the Washington Post)

I believe Amazon will re-focus on Whole Foods’ core values, making noticeable changes in its product assortment to win back true believers who have become alienated. At the same time, they will look closely at the offerings geared toward consumers looking for a more general grocery offering. Can they offer delicious food while respecting the company’s core values, at reasonable prices?  And without a doubt, Amazon will reinvent the supply chain — more on that soon — and Whole Foods’ IRMA system, the back-end technology that is universally despised, not unlike the back-end systems at most supermarkets.

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The secret information inside UPC barcodes

Scanners read the width of the bars and the gaps between the bars in a UPC to convert them into a number that represents the product.

I’ll describe the UPC-A version of the barcode, which is used in the United States for most retail products. Other types of barcodes exist for some product categories, like books, and in countries outside the United States.

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The Numbers Behind the Mustard Wars

Ketchup wars! Mustard wars! It’s a Condiment Armageddon! And it’s also an analytical opportunity.

This spring, Heinz relaunched its mustard with a new, improved formulation to compete head-to-head with French’s, the category leader. Answering this shot across the bow, French’s launched a new ketchup, challenging Heinz’s leadership.  At least two publications have called this situation a “war” — presumably between a pair of rival condiment nations.

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How much does it cost to get a preferred space on a shelf?

How much does it cost to get a preferred space on a shelf?  Somewhere between $0 and $3.5 million per item.  Usually closer to $0.

Surprised?  I hear it from people outside the industry all the time — they are convinced that evil manufacturers are paying supermarkets to have their items placed at exactly the right position on shelves.