All posts by Tara McAdams

Leverage Daily Demand Change Analytics to Grow Sales & “Shrink” Shrink

It is not surprising that businesses which have replenishment processes relying heavily on recent sales volumes without anticipating upcoming demand shifts often find certain stores understocked while others are overstocked.

Too often, sales are lost and customer satisfaction takes a hit. In fresh categories, the misalignment of inventories with demand drives up shrink costs. Since the weather is always changing, sales volumes vary considerably from day-to-day or week-to-week. Now, we can do something about it.

Join us on Tuesday, August 25th to hear how grocers are using Weather-Driven Demand insights to optimize replenishment for hundreds (even thousands) of their products.

Webinar topics include:

  • Introduction to Weather-Driven Demand Analytics – “Weather, Done Right”.
  • Improving Availability to Increase Sales & Shopper Satisfaction.
  • Better Managing Shrink in Fresh Categories.
  • Reducing Inventory Without Sacrificing Service Levels.

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Q2 Recap and Back-to-School Outlook

 

 

 

Join Coresight Research and Planalytics on Thursday, August 20, at 2:00 p.m. (ET) for a review of retail Q2 2020 and an outlook for the back-to-school season.

 

Topics covered on this webinar include:

  • A review of the weather conditions and business impacts during retail Q2.
  • A walk-through of the overall retail environment and developments throughout the quarter.
  • An outlook through the back-to-school/early fall season.
  • Overview of the back-to-school/fall categories that will be the most impacted by weather.
  • Examine the North America regions which have opportunity and risk in the early fall season.

 

Register for Webinar

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Driving Sales During Favorable Weather Periods

Winning with the Weather: Webinar Series
Driving Sales During Favorable Weather Periods

Changes in the weather generate changes in consumer purchasing, creating both opportunities and risks. Planalytics’ webinar series provides companies with straightforward guidance and strategies to “win with the weather” using real-world case studies to highlight business benefits. The July 9th webinar will focus on how retail suppliers use analytics to identify and take advantage of elevated demand trends due to favorable weather conditions.

Webinar topics include:

Introduction to Weather-Driven Demand (WDD) — What is it, how is it calculated, and how do companies leverage it throughout the year?
Use Case #1 — Optimize inventory strategy with a key retail partner to meet increased demand while maintaining in-stock goals.
Use Case #2 — Capturing the “synergistic effect” of running promotions or marketing campaigns during positive weather periods.

 

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Manage Inventory Uncertainty in Uncertain Times

Enhanced Retailers Solutions will be hosting a webcast featuring Planalytics.

Speakers:

• James Lewis, Founder & CEO, Enhanced Retailers Solutions
• Evan Gold, VP, Global Partnerships & Alliances, Planalytics

There are a number of external variables that constantly influence consumer purchasing decisions. Weather is constantly throwing retailers a curve and the recent pandemic has significantly changed demand trends. History is no longer a reliable benchmark to work from. New algorithms will need to be created and smart, experienced demand planners will need to “pressure test” assumptions to optimize inventory productivity. Join Enhanced Retail Solutions and Planalytics for a webinar that shows how weather-informed demand analytics provides businesses with the visibility and actionable metrics they need to capture more sales, improve inventory productivity, and reduce costs.

Webinar topics include:

• Measuring the impact of weather on sales with weather-driven demand.
• How to best allocate door level inventory based on store re-openings + weather.
• Identifying sales opportunities and risks throughout the selling season.
• Review of recent spring weather impacts and a look at weather-based opportunities and risks for the summer.
• How to optimize sell-through of seasonal merchandise.

 

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Retail Store Closures in 2020 Seen Doubling Over Last Year

WWD
By: Jean E. Palmieri


Holiday sales are also supposed to be 20 percent lower than last year, according to Coresight Research.

Between 20,000 and 25,000 retail stores may close this year, twice the number as last year, as the coronavirus pandemic continues to have an impact on consumer behavior.

That was the message delivered by John Harmon, senior analyst of Coresight Research. Harmon was a presenter on a webinar hosted by Planalytics on Wednesday afternoon. . . .

. . . While businesses don’t have much control over the pandemic, the one thing they can understand and work with is the weather.

Evan Gold, executive vice president of global partnerships for Planalytics, predicted shoppers “will be more attuned to weather than ever before” and will want to shop for seasonal merchandise in season, rather than before. So retailers need to make sure they have the right product in their stores at the right time, Gold said.

He said Memorial Day weekend will see a “warmer trend” for most of the country and June will be cooler on the coasts, warmer in the middle of the country and wetter in the West.

“As consumers venture out, it’s imperative that you have product on your racks to meet their demand,” he said.

Read the original article here.

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Profiting from Weather by Using Demand Analytics


Published in the British Retail Consortium’s (BRC) Spring 2020 issue of The Retailer
by: David Frieberg, VP of Marketing, Planalytics


REDUCING LOST SALES, WASTE & MARKDOWNS ARE SOME OF THE BENEFITS RETAILERS CAN CAPTURE BY ADJUSTING INVENTORIES TO ACCOUNT FOR WEATHER-BASED SHIFTS IN PURCHASING.

Given the external blows the industry has had to endure of late, retailers must look to optimise operations now more than ever. Companies need to squeeze out avoidable costs without sacrificing product availability or customer satisfaction. Identifying processes that can be significantly improved in the near term and provide quick financial returns is critical.

Utilising weather analytics to optimise inventories is the next place for retailers to focus. The weather conditions outside influence purchase decisions on a daily basis. And, since the weather is always changing, retailers must navigate fluctuating demand for many seasonal, consumable, including perishable, or need-based items. Incorporating weather-driven demand analytics into demand forecasting or replenishment processes keeps store inventories better aligned with changing consumer demand.

Below are some examples of how retailers can profit with weather-driven demand analytics.

BALANCING AVAILABILITY AND WASTE IN FRESH GROCERY

Like all retailers, supermarkets can use weather analytics to increase sales by reducing out-of-stocks. But given the amount of short shelf life perishable products in their stores, grocers have to pay additional attention to balancing availability with waste. Improving replenishment of fresh categories – where about 5% of total sales are lost to waste – can generate millions of pounds in cost savings annually for leading chains.

Companies can typically decrease waste by 10-25% in fruit and vegetables and 20-35% in fresh meats with weather-informed replenishment forecasts. This is accomplished by adjusting store-level inventories down ahead of periods when unfavourable weather will decrease demand. This is a huge area of opportunity for food retailers since most replenishment systems rely heavily on historical trends and/or the most recent sales volumes. Weather is too fickle for that approach to work reliably. Think about the times a “picture perfect” barbeque weekend is followed by a “washout” the next weekend and how the items on shoppers’ lists are likely to differ in the days preceding each.

Applying weather-driven demand adjustments to fresh replenishment enables companies to curtail waste when demand falls off and, conversely, increase inventories to meet spikes in demand during more favourable weather periods to avoid out-of-stocks.

MINIMISING MARKDOWNS ON SEASONAL PRODUCTS

For non-food retailers (fashion, sporting goods, department stores, DIY, etc.) optimising inventories with weather analytics can help limit margin-eroding markdowns. Retailers incorporating weather-driven demand insights can expect to improve gross margin by 90 to 120 basis points. Decreasing markdowns and adding to the bottom line is achieved by factoring in weather impacts in two ways.

First, companies need to account for the weather bias embedded in past sales performance before planning the next season or year. Failing to correct for when favourable conditions exaggerated sales or unfavourable conditions deflated sales adds significant error to plans as retailers unintentionally “chase” a sales environment that is unlikely to materialise. This often leads to excess inventory – which will need to be marked down – in markets where demand fails to meet the weather-inflated levels of the prior year.

A second chance to proactively manage markdowns presents itself during the trading season when a retailer could use expected weather impacts to either delay markdowns for a period of time or reduce the depth of markdowns (e.g. 30% off instead of 50% off). In this scenario, retailers use in-season weather insights that incorporate near-term meteorological forecasts to identify where the weather will support demand at higher prices.

INCREASE WORKING CAPITAL THROUGH “DEWEATHERISATION”

Waste and markdown savings are financial benefits that retailers would secure year-after-year. Bringing weather-driven demand analytics into the business also provides a one-time working capital gain.

“Deweatherisation” is the process of identifying, quantifying, and correcting the weather noise or volatility in historical sales. This process generates a significant first year saving as a result of initial inventory realignment or clean-up. This one-time inventory reduction produces working capital by reducing the total inventory in the retailer’s system via improved forecast accuracy and optimised safety stocks.

The balance sheet improvement can be measured by looking at working capital improvement as a percent of cash and cash equivalents. The benefit varies depending on retail segment. For grocery, a 3-5% increase in working capital relative to cash is a common range. For DIY/home improvement and general merchandise chains gains of 20% or more can often be achieved.

The examples above highlight a few of the ways that weather analytics can enhance profit for retailers. Optimising inventories with data-driven weather metrics can extract major cost savings starting in just a few months. On the revenue side of the equation, the inventory optimisation minimises out-of-stocks and this improvement in availability can increase a retailer’s total topline up to 2%.

At Planalytics, our experience with leading retailers has resulted in planning accuracy gains of 20% or more in certain product categories. These accuracy improvements drive measurable and repeatable cost savings.

Best of all, retailers do not have to wait 6-12 months or longer to begin using weather-driven demand analytics and capturing the financial benefits. Planalytics can provide weather impact models across a retailer’s entire range in less than two months. Weatherdriven demand metrics (unit volumes or percentages) can immediately be used for exception-based adjustments or quickly integrated into existing software solutions.

View Original Article Here.


For more information, go to www.planalytics.com.

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Planalytics Projects Near-Trend Winter Wheat Yields But Below Last Year’s Crop

Planalytics


First of Eight Rounds of Satellite-Based Crop Assessments Just Released.

BERWWN, PA, March 30, 2020 — “If current projections hold true, 2020 could see near-trend Winter Wheat yields, but well below last year’s crop.” This is one of the observations from Planalytics’ initial GreenReport Winter Wheat Yield Forecasts that utilize satellite imagery to measure current crop vigor in combination with historic yields.

Produced in collaboration with TerraMetrics Agriculture, Inc., Planalytics initial national estimate of 49.1 bushels per acre represents a decrease of 4.5 bushels from last year’s national average of 53.6 bu/ac, the second highest yielding crop on record. “Our satellite vegetation greenness model suggests near-trend potential, largely due to a Great Plains crop that is in good shape as it emerges from dormancy,” stated Jude Kastens, PhD, Research Associate Professor at the Kansas Applied Remote Sensing Program (KARS) located at the University of Kansas. Kastens is senior analyst on the joint Planalytics/TerraMetrics project that dates back nearly 20 years and includes forecasting yields for corn, soybeans and five other summer crops in addition to winter wheat.

Kansas, which has accounted for 23 percent of total U.S. winter wheat production over the last 10 years, is only 0.2 bu/ac below trend, but 5.5 bu/ac below last year’s bumper crop. “The 2020 Kansas crop enters spring in a similar position to last year’s crop. A late fall harvest resulted in late winter wheat planting across much of the state,” said Kastens. “Though moisture was adequate and emergence generally good, dryness led to limited growth before dormancy set in.” Fortunately, a wet and mild winter carried the crop through dormancy with few problems, including very little winter kill.

“There is at least one weather threat to keep an eye on…,” adds Jed Lafferty, Managing Director, Planalytics Life Sciences, “…dryness is expanding outward from eastern Colorado into not just western Kansas, but also toward Nebraska, Texas and Oklahoma.” Oklahoma and Texas combine to produce 12 percent of U.S. winter wheat and currently have some of the most mature wheat in the country, particularly Texas. Current USDA crop condition reports rate both states’ winter wheat crops above average.

Droughty conditions are starting to negatively impact an appreciable fraction of winter wheat fields in Oregon, Washington and Idaho, though the crop in that region of the country is just starting to emerge from winter dormancy. With nearly 1.7 million harvested acres, Washington ranks second to Kansas with 8 percent of the winter wheat crop.

Eight bi-weekly crop yield forecasts are provided for each crop and are available on an annual subscription basis.

For more information, go to www.planalytics.com/agribusiness or contact Planalytics at 800.882.5881, extension 245.


ABOUT PLANALYTICS

Planalytics, Inc. (www.planalytics.com) is the global leader in Business Weather Intelligence®. Through advanced weather analysis technologies, planning and optimization solutions, and industry-specific expertise, Planalytics helps companies precisely measure weather-driven impacts and effectively manage the never-ending variability of climate. Leading companies from a wide array of industries use Planalytics to “weatherize their business”, taking advantage of opportunities to increase revenue while deploying strategies to reduce costs and protect margins during periods of risk.

Kansas Applied Remote Sensing (KARS) is a research program of the Kansas Biological Survey at the University of Kansas. The Program was established by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the State of Kansas to conduct applied research on techniques that enable public agencies and private firms to better utilize data from satellite and air-borne remote sensing systems. Since 1996, KARS and its commercial partners, TerraMetrics Agriculture, Inc. and Planalytics, Inc., have focused research on environmental and agricultural applications of remote sensing technology and the transfer of products and services derived from remote sensing technologies to commercial, governmental, and other end users.

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Weather-Driven Demand Outlook –
Spring 2020 (UK)

Date: 3 April 2020
Time: 1:00PM – 1:30PM (BST)

Overview:

Join Planalytics on 3 April for a look at how the weather could help or hurt consumer demand in the United Kingdom this spring. The presentation will cover the year-to-year and in-season weather variability that affects consumer purchasing and share examples of specific category demand impacts for April and May. Learn how companies apply analytics to better understand performance, better align inventories with consumer demand, and more optimally target marketing/advertising.

 

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Planalytics & Nielsen Spring Outlook

Join Planalytics and Nielsen for our Spring 2020 Outlook 
on Thursday, March 19, 2020, at 2:00 p.m. EST. This special webinar presentation will highlight weather-based sales impacts to watch for during the upcoming spring season.

Topics covered on this webinar include:

  • Using Weather-Driven Demand metrics to quantify the weather’s impact on consumer demand for specific products, time periods, and locations.
  • Improving the accuracy of sales plans and demand forecasts by correcting for the weather-based sales volatility embedded in past results.
  • Understanding year-over-year weather variability and how this is likely to shift sales opportunities and risks this spring compared to last year.
  • A look at some of the products that will be positively or negatively affected by the weather this spring using Weather-Driven Demand examples based on Nielsen sales data.

Planalytics and Nielsen collaborate to provide weather-based analytics to help businesses both measure and manage the impact of weather. This partnership enables businesses to leverage the power of Nielsen demand data to quantify the impact of weather on historical results, proactively move inventory to meet demand changes, and support planning activities for future periods.

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