Categories: Uncategorized


Tommy Chapman


Jargon buster – part 2 – M to Z

Published On: 16 October 2019By 5.9 min readCategories: UncategorizedTags: , , ,
Jardon Buster Part 2

Part 2 of our jargon buster of just some of the latest retail terms …..

Markdown – A markdown is the price reduction of a product based upon its inability to be sold at the original planned selling price.

M-commerce – Refers to mobile commerce which allows people to buy or sell products over the Internet using a mobile device such as a smartphone or tablet.

Merchandising – The way in which retailers plan to ensure they are marketing the right product or service at the right time, in the right place, in the right quantities and at the right price.

Mobile Payments – Mobile payments are often referred to as mobile wallet, this is when a consumer pays for a transaction using a mobile device as a contactless payment method, usually a mobile phone, rather than paying with cash or a credit or debit card. This is done using NFC (Near Field Communications) technology.

Mobile PoS – Refers to mobile point of sale, a mobile device such as a tablet or smartphone which performs the functions of an electronic point of sale system. This is often used as an additional till point during busy times in a store to help reduce queues.

Multi-Channel Retail – This is when a retailer uses multiple sales channels (stores, website, direct mail etc) to sell its products. 
Omni-Channel Retail – The concept of providing a seamless, consistent and complementary retail experience, regardless of the channel or device. The next generation of multi-channel retail, omni-channel means establishing a presence on several channels and platforms, i.e. bricks and mortar, mobile, online, print and so on, enabling customers to transact, interact and engage across these channels simultaneously and seamlessly. 

Off Price – A term which describes retailers which sell branded goods at a lower price than usual by retailers, not to be confused with an outlet, which tends to only sell one brand, an off-price retailer works with many different brands.

Open-to-Buy – Derived from the Weekly Sales and Stock Intake, the merchandiser adds in forecasted sales and how much stock they have agreed to take in with the supplier. Where the sales outstrip the stock intake there is an ‘open to buy’ created in which the merchandiser can make the decision at a later date what product they want to purchase more of from the supplier. This enables the merchandiser to work with a certain degree of flexibility, they are committed to a small amount of stock and the ability to buy into better selling lines.

Pop up Shop – Often powered by mobile point of sale, a pop-up shop is a temporary retail space. Retailers open pop up shops for many reasons including moving into a new market, boosting brand awareness, to test a new start up and more.

Planogram – A planogram is a visual diagram, drawing, or schematic that provides detailed information where every product in a retail store should be situated. A planogram should also illustrate how many facings are allocated for each SKU (Stock Keeping Unit). The complexity of a planogram may vary by the size of the store, the software used to create the planogram and the need of the retailer.

Product Life Cycle (PLC) – A Product Life Cycle represents the stages that a product typically goes through from the beginning to the end. There are four stages within a PLC, these are: Introduction, Growth, Maturity and Decline.

S-commerce or Social Selling – Also known as Social Selling, this is an element of e-commerce that mainly involves social media and user contributions to assist online buying and selling of goods. Essentially it is the sale of goods online instigated through social media.

Sell Through Rate – The sell through rate is often referred to as STR or ‘Sell Through Analysis’, it is a calculation that compares the amount of stock a retailer receives from a supplier against what is actually sold to the consumer. The rate is often represented as a percentage.

Shopping Cart – There are typically two types of website, transactional and non-transactional. The main point of difference is that transactional websites have a shopping cart facility. This is an element of e-commerce software that enables visitors to purchase goods off a website.

Show-rooming – This is when a shopper visits a physical store to check out a product before purchasing it online at a lower price elsewhere.

Shrinkage – Refers to a reduction or shrinkage in stock, this could include shoplifting, employee theft and supplier fraud as well as genuine administration errors. Retailers often deploy loss prevention software applications to reduce overall shrinkage.

Stock Cover – This is usually calculated in terms of weeks or days and it means the number of days or weeks the current inventory levels will last for based on previous weekly demand.

Stock Keeping Unit (SKU) – Every manufacturer, distributor and retailer talk about SKU’s. A Stock Keeping Unit (SKU) is a code that helps retailers identify each individual product line. A SKU code often appears as a machine-readable bar code that helps the item to be tracked for inventory purposes.

Supply Chain – The system involved in the creation and sale of a product from the delivery of source materials to manufacturing and its eventual delivery to the customer. This complex network includes the individuals, organisations, activities and technology involved in the process.

Tribetailing – This term refers to the retail practice of tailoring everything a retailer does, from store design, to advertising to employees, for a specific tribe or group of people. With Tribetailing, retailers are not trying to appeal to the masses, instead they are focussing in on a particular niche and are catering to them and only them.

Units Per Transaction (UPT) – The average number of products bought in one transaction. This is calculated by dividing the total number of items purchased by the number of transactions. Much like ATV, this can be calculated on a daily, monthly or annual basis to track progress against set goals.

Visual Merchandising – The practice of developing floor plans and sales displays within retail shops to engage customers and boost sales activity.
Warehousing – Performance of administrative and physical functions associated with the storage of products in a warehouse, including receipt, inspection, verification, putting away, picking products for dispatch and more.

Web–rooming – This is the opposite of show-rooming, it refers to when a shopper does their research into a product online, but ultimately purchases it in a store.

WSSI – Stands for Weekly Sales and Stock Intake – referred to as ‘whizzy’, this is a spreadsheet used by retailers to calculate sales and stock intake by week. The retailer then plots ‘supplier-availability’ for that line over the coming weeks, forecasted sales are added to the spreadsheet for each item for each week. With teams carrying this out for each product, the business has a view of the stock-holding and performance as well as those areas where they may be over or understocked.

Read our Jargon Buster part 1

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