There’s a disturbing trend in the retail world. It’s not new, but it looks like it is becoming more pervasive in the stores that I frequent. I first noticed it at Toys R Us stores in 2009 , but now I am seeing it at some of my local Targets as well.
I don’t know if this "device" has a real name or not. If it does I’d love to know what it is. I call it "the shopper stopper," and what it is, is a little rubber grommet that fits on a shelf peg and keeps the minimal stock that the store has have pushed forward to give the "illusion" of full pegs worth of product. Literally there will be one figure on the peg pushed forward.
But it’s a shame, a facade and not a very good one at that. And in this age of recessions, and stores struggling to make projected sales it just seems lazy and dumb.
Is it really easier to put one figure on a peg and push it forward than to order new product and actually have your pegs full of product people want to buy?
I’ve seen these at multiple stores in several states. These were everywhere at several Toys R Us’ that I visited during the holiday season.
I’d love to hear the retailers explanation for these. I can only assume that this is to help cut down on "facing" at the end of the night. "Facing" for those of you not familiar with the term is an activity that some retailers have their departments do each night after the store closes. The employees go around the store and pull all of the stock forward on the shelves and pegs from what has sold that day. The also sort, rehang, reset, restock and refold everything in the department for the next day. Just "facing" your product is not the same as having products, but I guess if stores think it saves time so the closing employees don’t have to touch each peg in each section then this practice will continue.
Personally I think a more robust and accurate inventory system that placed orders for needed stock when quantities were low would be a better investment than these stopper.
That’s why it boggles my mind.
||Posted by Julius Marx