Why do shoppers make the decisions they do at shelf? Why do they choose one item over another? How do out of stocks affect behavior? Buying occasion, shelf effects, store conditions and a host of other variables can influence shopper behavior. Decision trees – the hierarchy of purchase behavior, is at the core of market research. It’s essential to know how different products are chosen by shoppers, which are non-substitutable, and which may need to be reassessed. Knowing this, the most important decisions in the category can be identified which can lead to optimizing your brand positioning or the category shelf arrangement.
The challenge is that most consumer decision tree methods are either based on attitudinal data which is not a very good predictor of actual behavior, or sales data which doesn’t reveal why they buy what they buy.
Thankfully, there is a solution. Explorer’s VR technology puts shoppers in front of a virtual shelf either online or in-person to learn how they make decisions in real-time, through realistic 3-D simulations. Presenting a realistic shelf provides the appropriate context to simulate real at shelf decision making.
Some of the advantages of virtual shopper decision trees include:
- Provides both behavioral-based trees and attitudinal “why” insights.
- Provide actual product substitution for consistent occasions.
- Can include new products that are not yet available to customers.
- Can be easily leveraged to be used for further studies.
- Less expensive – feasible to conduct shopper decision tree more frequently to account for fast-moving trends.
Virtual shopper decision trees can be used to make improvements for:
- Shelf Layout
- Planogram Arrangement
- Display Signage
- POP Merchandising
Virtual shopper decision trees allow for more accurate, deeper insights in less time than ever before. Data can be easily tested and re-tested repeatedly to provide reliable insights at the shelf right when you need them.
If you’d like to learn more, don’t hesitate to contact us regarding our virtual shelf capabilities that can be used for consumer decision tree research and other shopper, pack and merchandising opportunities.