The Plannogrammer is an online training facility for category managers, trade marketers, and retailers in consumer markets.
It supports a collection of simulation and analysis platforms such as Space Planner for optimizing space and promotion plans, Plannogram for populating shelves and merchandising, a Due To Analysis dashboard that decomposes brand sales into the factors driving sales, and a Promotion Evaluator to evaluate the volume, value and profit impact of promotion plans.
The video, a transcript of which is provided below, illustrates how to use the Plannogrammer.
The Space Planner is a What If Analysis tool that permits users to optimize shelf space and promotion plans.
It provides details of brands’ baseline sales in volume and value, list prices and regular prices. And it estimates projected sales including losses if any due to stock outs.
You may switch from volume to value by clicking the spin buttons.
The platform permits you to chalk out promotion plans in terms of price discounts, displays and feature or co-op advertising. It also allows you to set facings.
Detailed descriptions of these parameters are provided at the bottom of the web page.
The SET button below the facings header, automatically assigns the facings in proportion to brand sales. For training purposes, this button may be deactivated.
The ALL CLEAR button clears all entries, setting facings to the minimum level of 2. Doing so severely reduces forward stock, increasing the likelihood of stock outs for most brands. You need to re-assign facings to eliminate out of stocks, and optimize inventory levels.
Now, suppose you want to promote Koko Krunch at the discounted price of $4.95 combined with a large feature advertisement, you simply click the dropdown boxes to make these selections.
Note that if a brand with inadequate facing is promoted, the likelihood of stock out situations will increase. To prevent this, you may either increase the facings, or place the brand on display.
In the above video, in addition to Koko Krunch, Shreddies is promoted at the discounted price of $5.10, with an endcap or gondola end display, and a large feature ad.
The impact of this promotion plan is depicted on the screen in terms of increase in projected sales of Koko Krunch and Shreddies, and decrease in sales of the brands that are being cannibalized.
At the top of screen you see the utilization of facings, and display.
At the bottom you see the overall impact of this promotions plan on total category sales. Whereas the category gained in volume, the total sales value declined.
The planogram is a facility for populating shelves and merchandising.
Take note of the merchandising score at the top which is 0 if the shelves are empty, and increases as you add products. This score which ranges from 0 to 100, reflects how well items are aligned within their respective segments.
To populate the shelf, you may drag products from the left pane onto the shelf.
As you populate the shelf, the plannogram reveals, via colour codes, whether the facings are adequate, high or low. For instance code red for a brand indicates facings are so low that unless you utilize promotion display space for the brand, it is expected to experience stock outs.
Alternatively re-adjust shelf spacing by double-clicking the item faces. For instance, in the example shown in the above video, facings of Frosted Flakes are reduced so that we can allot more space to Shreddies.
The Due-To analysis dashboard depicts the decomposition of sales of each brand, into the baseline and each of the causal factors driving sales.
As can be seen in the video example, Koko Krunch’s projected sales are much greater than its baseline sales primarily due to gains from the price discount. The brand has also gained significantly from the display as well as co-op advertisement.
Should you change the measure from volume to value, you get to see the decomposition reflected in value terms.
At the bottom, the dashboard reveals the decomposed impact of the promotion and merchandising plan on the category as a whole.
Promotion Evaluator evaluates promotions in terms of the volume, value and profit impact of the promotions plan, on all of the items in the category, as well as the category as a whole.
For plan depicted in the video, considering the big price discount for Koko Krunch, we see a large projected gain in volume. The gain in value is not as large due to the discount, and for the same reason the brand’s gross margin has plummeted.
At the bottom of this screen you can see that for the category as a whole, while there is significant increase in volume, value sales have declined and profits have dipped considerably.
This analysis, however, does not account for the promotional support that the retailer might have received from the manufacturers of the promoted brands.
And importantly it does not account for the gains in sales of other product categories, through the additional store traffic generated by the promotions in breakfast cereals.
The plan would be beneficial, if the increase in shopper traffic resulted in gains in sales and profits across product categories that more than compensated the loss in breakfast cereals.
This dashboard depicts Elasticities and Cross Elasticities. The spin buttons at the top of the table allow you to switch from discount price, to display and co-op advertising.
Elasticity refers to the degree of responsiveness of one variable to another. So for instance, price elasticity of demand is a measure of the responsiveness of demand (i.e. sales quantity) to a change in price.
In the table, the elasticities are placed along the diagonals and shaded beige. For instance, the discount price elasticity of demand for Koko Krunch is −3.2. This implies that a 10% reduction in the item’s price will result in a 32% increase in sales.
The table also depicts the cross discount elasticities. It tells us that a 10% discount in the price of Koko Krunch will result in 8% drop in the sales volume of Milo. Similarly a 10% discount in the price of Milo will result in 3% reduction in sales of Koko Krunch.
The notes at the bottom of this dashboard provide more details about these coefficients.