When it comes to product range, less is more

Last year I wrote a blog discussing whether or not clients should be reducing their range (To range rationalise or not range rationalise? That is the question!). For Tesco’s new Chief Executive, Dave Lewis, the answer appears to be “yes”, having announced in the news recently that Tesco will be cutting their range by 30%. The rationale behind this is that not only will it cut costs for the retailer, but ultimately, it will make shopping simpler for customers.

With the rise of discounters who only offer a limited range, it would seem that less choice certainly does not seem to be an issue for shoppers and is actually becoming the norm for the increasing numbers who now do their main shop at Aldi or Lidl.

In fact, with evidence to suggest that in some categories (e.g. frozen) shoppers are so overwhelmed by the sheer number of similar SKUs available that they actively avoid them, offering a smaller range may actually encourage shoppers back down the aisle.


However, it is not only stocking a smaller range that is the answer, but laying it out in a way that makes sense to shoppers and making it easier for them to identify the difference between variants through standout packaging. Get these three elements right and the shopping process will truly be simpler for us all!

Here at Marketing Sciences Unlimited, we use our Range Analysis Technique to help clients build the optimal range for their category (based on shopper satisfaction with the range). For more information on our Shopper capabilities, Fixture Optimisation or Pack research, please do get in touch.

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Deborah Hall
01962 842211
Article date - 06/02/2015
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