Retailers looking to anticipate future trends benefited from an inspiring session at Natural & Organic Products Europe in April, by Amy McManus, founder and managing director of AM Marketing.
In The Retail Revolution: Use Google to Keep Your Store Ahead of the Game, McManus detailed the simple steps that stores can take to ensure they are stocking what their customers are, and will be, looking for by using three free tools: Google Trends, Keyword Planner and Alerts.
“We use all three of these tools from Google for our clients in order to anticipate trends, find out what’s new in the industry, what’s going to be here for a long time, what’s going to make you money, what’s just a fad and what’s actually going to get people to your stores, get that footfall and help grow your business,” explained McManus.
The first tool discussed was Google Trends, which allows users to search for a product or term, for example CBD, and discover how many people have searched for or looked to buy it over a specific timeframe, giving a good indication as to how popular it is and whether interest is rising or falling.
Through Google Keyword Planner retailers can find a list of key terms people are searching for related to a specific topic – for example top of the list for ‘veganism’ was vegan cheese with 18,000 people in the UK searching for it every month – to get an idea of what they should be stocking to meet consumer demand.
Finally, McManus explained how retailers can use Google Alerts to receive emails whenever there is a news article about a specific phrase or a product they’re considering stocking to see how much interest there actually is around it: “This is good to not only get the latest news to make sure you and your staff know exactly what you’re talking about, but also to assess decisions about what you are purchasing and selling in your store.”
McManus pointed out that the pitfalls of not thoroughly researching what you stock can include over- or under-stocking, disappointed customers, lack of shelf space and having to discount heavily lines that aren’t performing.
The entire session can be viewed on AM Marketing’s YouTube channel, which offers lots of other tips and tricks.