Signs of the Times

August 13, 2014By Focus on the Pharmacy Front End Blog, Independent Pharmacy

by Dave Wendland

Helping shoppers navigate retail aisles amidst the sea of bright-colored packages, crowded shelves, and ever-evolving sub-categories has never been more challenging. Given the available three-to-seven seconds of consumer attention at shelf, smart retailers are looking to make shopping easier with at-shelf signage communicating key attributes that are making a difference in product selection.

One need look no further than the movement afoot regarding “Gluten Free” product claims and the broadening consumer appeal for items that meet this criteria. But how will a haggard shopper have the patience to read the fine print or look for the iconography adorning the package? Frankly, they won’t.

That’s why at-shelf signage has become more and more common. Whether flagging items that are Gluten Free, Sugar Free, Low Carb, Heart Healthy, or Unsalted, these small markers indicating specific product characteristics is not only making shopping easier, but, if I’m any indication, they are also adding to the market basket … often with far more expensive and seemingly profitable items from the signage

I admire the organizations at the center of attribute management and sign creation for developing a retail-focused application that is bringing real value to the shopping experience. Their diligence in managing the list of eligible items and the incorporation of those key decision drivers onto easy-to-read, easy-to-implement shelf talkers has not gone unnoticed.

It will not surprise me if more and more sign applications emerge that help to inform shoppers about their purchase decisions and make the shopping experience easier for customers – and likely more profitable for retailers.

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