We're often asked about the process of adding products to our selection and maintaining the big picture with the product assortment. Why do we sell these, just these, not some other stuff and why so much of tit instead of tat? Well, we're up front and honest about our shit, so let's take a peek under our hood. ...
Product selections in Varusteleka, case flashlights and headlamps
We're often asked about the process of adding products to our selection and maintaining the big picture with the product assortment. Why do we sell these, just these, not some other stuff and why so much of tit instead of tat? Well, we're up front and honest about our shit, so let's take a peek under our hood.
The basics of a good selection
The principle is easy-peasy: sell stuff people want to buy. Or so it should be, although some retailers fail at this point already. The objective is clear, so let's see how to get there.
All or nothing
For a customer to want to buy anything from us, they should know it's available from us. You order things to sell, make a good product page with thorough information in a simple form. That's a huge task if you add everything under the sun to your selection.
A bloated selection doesn't serve the customer
It's not just us who would sweat with the challenges of overly wide ranges. "Too much information" doesn't only mean the times when someone shares detailed stories of their bodily functions or sex life. A prime example is Amazon, where you shop with a search tool and AI assistance instead of browsing huge product categories. Would you rather go to a shop where you can't get rid of a salesperson, or one where you can look at the options by yourself and ask for help if you need any?
The job of making choices
Once you understand the basics, it's time to dig deeper: how to strike a balance between offering enough choice to serve different customers, yet keep the assortment simple enough for both the customers and the staff to understand? We're looking for the right amount of products, so:
- The customer knows we have stuff to sell
- Buying stuff is pleasant; no drowning in a heap of everything
- The staff is familiar with the product range and can help customers succeed
- The customer finds what they need
- Buyer's remorse is avoided and the customer is happy to shop with us again
Our template is rather simple: products are divided into three main use categories and three price points. The smart readers calculate at this point that nine products should cover all bases: for each use you'll have an affordable, mid-price and high-end option. Here's an example of filling out the matrix with Fenix products:
|Everyday use||Fenix E12||Fenix UC30|
|Camping and hunting||Fenix CL09||Fenix PD35||Fenix TK32|
|Military / Tacticool||Fenix LD15R||Fenix TK09||Fenix TK25|
This is often varied case by case: some products don't make sense in all price categories, or are limited in the range of intended use. In the case of flashlights and headlamps we beefed up the selection with a weight on mid-price items, which are often the best deals anyways. Our system is simple in principle, but flexible and easy to understand.
Magic bullets and strategy
It's not hard to figure out that one product can be suitable for more than one uses. A conclusion that three Magic Bullets could suffice: you only offer products that cover all three user groups and find an option at three price-points. Keep in mind, though, that Jacks of All Trades are often Masters of None.
A choked range of products is most helpful for customers who happen to stumble on the offerings and only then realize they need one. Our strategy - which is publicly stated - is to be more. We aim to offer gear for all kinds of activities and a customer experience you won't forget. Beginning from the fall of 2018 this means our range of flashlights and headlamps is well thought-out and easy to approach, as we try to do things. Do check it out!