Steps to Get Your Product On The Shelf

graphic of items on a store shelf to illustrate get your product on the shelf
June 17, 2022

At a time when ecommerce is skyrocketing, it’s always important get your product on the shelf of a retail store. It’s one way to expand your distribution channels among those who still shop traditionally for CPG products. And many customers still want to see and examine more aspects of your product before they decide to buy.

However, getting your product on the shelf of any retail store isn’t easy. So here are three steps you should take to achieve a smooth product launch on a real shelf.

1 Know Your Product and Your Target “Shelf” Customers

Get a deeper understanding of your product and how your product fits into today’s traditional marketplace. If you haven’t done so already, these questions will help:

What category does my CPG product fit into? What makes my product unique?

Digital outlets can include your product in multiple categories but retailers must know where to place it.

Who are my competitors in this product category? What are their value propositions?

Retailers need a reason to take on your product. They ask themselves: “Which product will sell best?”

What’s the performance of all similar products in this category?

Retailers can only show a certain number of brands in their available space. Are you better to launch – or remain – online only?

What are the trends influencing the market in this product category?

Retailers need more longevity than digital outlets. Is your desire to get your product on the shelf in your – and their – long-term interests?

Another important aspect to understand is your target customers. Are your target customers shopping in your targeted retail store? If not, you’re wasting your efforts!

However, equipped with this market insight, you have the best chance of delivering a successful pitch to the retail store or chain.

2 Research and Develop your Marketing Strategy

1 Research the strategies that other brands have adopted successfully to get their products in stores – and what didn’t work!

There are plenty of stories about launches that went wrong. Equally, marketing has been disrupted for CPG brands. As McKinsey states: CPG players need to rethink their portfolio priorities and ‘where to play’ choices to increase their exposure to growing markets, channels, and subcategories.” (Our italics.)

2 Consider your data.

You may already be selling your products online. What does your data say about the performance of your products in the areas where you’re looking to get your product in retail stores? Using the data, create a marketing strategy for entering that space. Your plan will include these considerations:

  • Always start with the consumer and building a brand communication strategy
  • Leverage data and understand your velocity (UPSPW – units per store per week)
  • Who is your core consumer?

3 Keep At It and Network to Get Products in Stores

1 Don’t rely on the retail store alone to improve your product sales! Prove to new retail locations that you have an online presence to drive customers there.

2 Continue to network in places where retailers come together, like trade shows and conferences, etc., to get products in more stores.

3 Reach out to other possible partners to work together for the benefit of both of you, to get your product on the shelf of other retail stores.

We Can Help!

Why not leverage Momentum CPG’s deep industry experience to guide you to the next level? Schedule a consultation today!

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Steps to Get Your Product On The Shelf
Want to get into a traditional retail store with your CPG product? Our three steps ensure a smooth launch.

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