Planning retail spaces

In today's retail scenario, rental spaces are expensive and the available selling space is limited. As the potential products for sale are on the rise, planograms have become the need of the hour for optimum utilisation of space. We explore the concept an
Exploring retail spaces

The best look of a store is the one that has everything displayed perfectly with ample space for the customer to browse through merchandise. Planning is a largely essential component for designing a store. The first step towards space planning is to evaluate the amount of selling and non selling space in a store. Planning needs due consideration and a planogram is imperative to make this task work best.

A planogram is a visual sketch that provides details of where each product in a retail store should be placed. This illustration not only portrays a flow chart of merchandise departments for a store layout but also show on which aisle and on what shelf an item is located. A planogram is often received before a product reaches a store. The complexity of a planogram may vary with the size of a store, the software used to create the planogram and the requirements of the retailer. Planograms can be as simple as a photo of a preset section or more detailed showing exact placement of each item. A planogram should also exemplify how many facings are allocated for each SKU. 

Purpose and role
Product placement and improved sales are the fundamental reasons for which a retailer should implement planograms in a store. The purpose of a planogram is to communicate how to set the merchandise and facilitate communication of retailer’s brand identity. The store needs to be planned so that the merchandise is effortlessly accessible to customers. Planograms also help stores to maintain inventory control and be up to date with the stocks i.e. reduction of out-of-stock situations. They also help to identify the selling potential to every square foot of space which makes it easier to calculate the profit margins. In order to optimise shelf layout and receive a return on investment, the planogram should be properly executed and maintained by the staff.  

Planning and execution
Planning of a planogram is the most important aspect in the chain of activities involved for a store layout. Sales and seasonality, popularity of products, division of categories and sub-categories, budgets, number of facings and evaluating surplus and out of stock situations are just a few things which should be kept in mind while planning a planogram.

After a planogram has been made, it needs to be effectively executed. Implementation of planograms is a task in itself and involves a lot of thought and effort. The easiest way of putting a planogram to use is by using a trial and error method. Under this method, the merchandise is kept manually in stores and later according to the requirements, the product placement is taken care of to match the best arrangement. Else, the retailer goes for the software solutions provided by various IT companies.  

Problem and solutions  
Though the advantages of using a planogram are multiple, one needs to be very particular about the layout, space and merchandise for a particular store so that the area is put to its optimum use. The problem with the execution of a planogram is the complication which arises due to a variety of merchandise available. It is very difficult to make the arrangement on an excel sheet and use it for further reference while stacking. Hence, it is advisable to use software for meticulous arrangement of merchandise. While on the other hand, execution at the store level can also be a problem even though the planogram has been made aptly. Personnel not competent enough to tackle the intricacies of the functioning of a planogram can lead to a mismatch in merchandise placing, hence the software should be well understood before operating or a retailer should appoint a planogram expert. Thus, retailers should overcome the problems related to planograms and maximise the usage of every inch or foot of the space available in the store. 

Wrap up
If you aren't using planograms, it just might be the right time to start. If your retail store is already using planograms, the above mentioned information will definitely help you to effectively implement and maintain a planogram in the best prospect for the retail store.


Publish Date
Not Sponsored
Live: People Reading Now