Mastering the digital shelf: How e-commerce insights help pet manufacturers


Mastering the digital shelf: How e-commerce insights help pet manufacturers

Consumers’ buying journey for pet products is changing as omnichannel shopping becomes the new norm. As shoppers increasingly turn to e-commerce retailers for their pet product needs, simply being a part of a local pet retailer’s assortment is no longer enough. 

Even if shoppers aren’t completing their purchases online, they’re still researching and comparing products they expect to find on their next in-store shopping trip. To be successful in this environment, your pet brand must master both the physical and digital shelf.

Identifying online and in-store growth opportunities based on consumer insights, sales trends, and competitor analysis is the key to increasing your sales. Here are three actions you can take to expand your share of the e-commerce space using data:

#1. Identify key trends and growth opportunities 

Online sales are very important to pet product manufacturers—perhaps even more so than other retail categories. In fact, 30% of all pet supply sales in a 52-week period (ended 10/24/20)* occurred online. As an early mover in e-commerce, many pet-centric online retailers are already well established. That’s why finding opportunities to grow sales on these major platforms is crucial. Measuring online sales by monitoring consumer shopping behaviors can reveal trends and opportunities for growth. 

PRO ADVICE: Monitoring e-commerce sales by e-receipt capture is the most accurate and stable way to measure performance across platforms. Analyzing overall sales for your category and segment on a monthly basis provides insights into growth opportunities, for example, by introducing a new product or marketing existing products in a new way.

#2. Analyze performance relative to competitors 

For pet product manufacturers, online competitors may be growing faster and representing a greater threat than competitors in brick-and-mortar channels. Identifying those competitors and comparing your products’ performance to theirs is important for developing effective sales strategies. 

PRO ADVICE: Analyzing monthly e-commerce data helps identify which brands and banners are leading your pet product category and segment. You can spot which are growing fastest and might be a potential threat to your sales. Comparing competitors on the e-commerce report to those in traditional RMS reports highlights which brands are more competitive in each channel, allowing you to tailor your sales and marketing strategies accordingly.

#3. Understand how consumers shop across online and in-store channels

To motivate consumers to purchase your product, you’ll need insight into their online and offline decision-making processes. Understanding what goes into the buyer’s journey—for example, their pre-trip preparation, browsing habits and research—can help you influence behaviors at both the digital and physical shelf.

PRO ADVICE: With insights based on e-commerce panel surveys, you can learn how consumers are shopping and understand what’s driving their purchase behaviors. Analyzing Omnichannel Shopper Fundamentals leads to understanding the path to purchase, including shopper motivations, barriers and purchase influencers. 

How Nielsen can help you master the digital shelf

Nielsen provides the fast, flexible and agile tools pet product manufacturers need to grow both online and in-store sales. Monthly e-commerce measurement provides accurate tracking of online sales as well as shopper insights, while RMS data provides the most current and comprehensive snapshot of in-store retail performance available.  Omnichannel Shopper Fundamentals offer insights into the consumer path to purchase, motivations and sales drivers both on and offline. 

A suite of products to support your e-commerce strategy

  • Monthly E-commerce Reporting: The most comprehensive view of both online and offline sales, plus online shopper data and behavioral motivations, so you can make better data-driven decisions.
  • RMS: Complete, current data on market shares, competitive sales volumes and insights into distribution, pricing, merchandising and promotions.
  • Omnichannel Shopper Fundamentals: A top-line understanding of the online and offline path to purchase with survey-based insights, including shopper motivations, barriers and purchase influencers.