BY WILLIAM J. LYNOTT
How would you like to make a sale for which gross profit equals net profit; That;s what happens when a customer adds an impulse buy to a regular sale in your store. The customer;s planned sale pays
its share of your payroll and overhead e;pense; the item bought
on impulse adds virtually no e;pense to the original transaction
e;cept the cost of the item. Thus, gross profit on the impulse item
virtually equals net profit.
The good news is that every customer who walks into your store
is an impulse sales opportunity. And this is where brick;and;mortar
stores have a decided edge over e;retailers.
According to research by management consulting firm A. T. ;e;
arney, ;; percent of consumers spend more money than they had
planned in brick;and;mortar stores, while only ;; percent reported
online impulse shopping.
;f course, impulse buys don;t happen by accident. ;ere are
proven ways to hitch a ride on that profitable bandwagon;
TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THE BRICK-AND-MORTAR EDGE
The ability to generate impulse buys is one of the few ways in which
brick;and;mortar stores have a decided edge over the online behe;
moths. ;our store provides much more opportunity for unplanned
sales than typical e;tailers. ;ecause successful retailing depends on
utilizing every possible advantage, it;s important to design and con;
duct an ongoing program for ma;imizing profitable impulse buying.
CHOOSE IMPULSE PRODUCTS CAREFULLY
The best impulse items are simple; they need no e;planation, so they
need no selling. If the customer has to ask what the item is for or how
to use it, it has no place on the impulse display.
In addition, impulse items should be ine;pensive; no need to ask,
;Can I afford it;” ;eep in mind that, by definition, impulse items
are bought on impulse. The average person isn;t going to decide to
buy an e;pensive product without first giving some thought to the
decision. ;n the other hand, your average customer isn;t going to
spend much time debating a ;; or ;; purchase. That;s why it;s best
to target products on the lower end of the price scale when deciding
on products for your impulse displays.
And think small. If shoppers spot an item that fits easily into a
pocket or shopping basket, they;re more likely to feel the urge to buy.
USE STRATEGIC POSITIONING
Increasing impulse buys calls for increased visibility. Ideally, every
customer who makes a purchase in your store will see your display
of impulse items. The best way to ensure that they do is to position
displays prominently in the checkout area.
;erhaps the most convincing e;ample of increased visibility is
how grocery stores load their checkout areas with candy, gum, mag;
azines, gift cards and other impulse candidates.
As customers wait in line staring at these ine;pensive products,
they;re tempted to toss one or two into their shopping carts without
thinking much about it. ;owever, if grocery stores were to keep
those same items at the back of the store, customers would be much
less likely to pick them up in the middle of a hectic shopping trip. In
other words, it;s all about placement. Shoppers who have already
made a purchase are obviously in a buying frame of mind, so the
addition of a relatively ine;pensive item should be an easy step in
Another effective positioning strategy is to strategically
cross;merchandise impulse items near best;selling items. ;lacing
products in these areas increases their visibility.
USE IN-STORE SIGNAGE TO INCREASE IMPULSE SALES
;hysical signage is always an effective method of in;store advertis;
;oost ;rofits ;it; ;mpulse ;uys
ing, and there are many ways to tempt customers into making that
ine;pensive;but profitable;last;minute purchase. An engaging photo of a happy
dog getting a shampoo ne;t to the shampoo display at the checkout counter will be an
53 July 2017 Pet Product News International
Here’s how to get your fair share of this profitable slice of the retailing pie.
Super Premium Dog Food
Exclusive to independent pet specialty with no on-line sales
LAUNCHING AT SUPERZOO
All Life Stages
is the First
For more information contact us at