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How to Get Your Complete Omnichannel Sales Picture

Harvey Ma
SVP, Omni, Consumer and Retail Performance, NielsenIQ
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Do you know what you don’t know in your omnisales data?

By now, most CPG manufacturers and retailers recognize that if they're only tracking in-store or online sales, they're not getting the complete picture of their performance. Consequently, they're looking for ways to track sales and spot opportunities across the entire omnichannel landscape. But not all omnichannel sales measurement solutions are created equal. It’s likely that most brands and retailers don’t realize they are missing crucial insights about sales performance in a given category or market.

Traditional methods of tracking omnichannel sales don’t possess a comprehensive view of sales and share covering both online and offline channels. The best way to understand the impact of ecommerce on total share, improve efficiency with one data source, and identify and close blind spots is with an objective, unbiased, and multi-channel view.

Furthermore, understanding online and offline sales requires identifying and measuring the fast-growing click-and-collect segment, which has become an incredibly important function of both channels that is often difficult to measure. Worse, it is frequently double counted or miscategorized.

Unbiased and holistic sales data allows retailers and brands to take advantage of white space growth opportunities, no matter what their industry, category, or market conditions. Pet care is one industry with wide-open possibilities to win market share. It was growing fast even before the pandemic, and recent NielsenIQ Omnisales data shows just how much potential there is for brands to grow, especially those looking at both online and offline sales and share. 

Pet care skyrocketed across channels in 2020

Pet care in particular has seen explosive growth— the category is poised to nearly triple to $275 billion by 2030.

The American Pet Products Association (APPA) attributed this growth in part to the pandemic in 2020. People stuck at home adopted pets in droves, and pets became a source of entertainment and comfort during a long, difficult year.

The sharp rise in pet adoptions during quarantine prompted pet food sales to skyrocket, which coincided with subsequent product shortages as the sector dealt with similar supply chain challenges as the rest of the industry in the spring and summer of 2020.

Consumers also snapped up pet accessories and supplies in huge quantities, which the APPA said mirrors similar trends depicted by their owners, who increasingly desire healthier lifestyles and a greater focus on fitness for their pets. Aside from supplements and vitamins, pet parents are also incorporating technology into their furry friends’  routines. Though pet adoptions have most recently slowed, further growth is expected in the pet category for 2021. 

Don’t miss out on whitespace opportunities

Retailers and manufacturers operating in the pet space have huge opportunities, but only if they are able to accurately and reliably track sales performance across all channels. 

For example, recent NielsenIQ Omnisales data found that in-store pet care sales represented 61% of the total category, reaching $32.4 billion for the 52 weeks ending June 21, 2021, while online pet sales made up just 39% of the category at $14.6 billion. Those numbers might seem cut and dry, but they don’t show that online pet care sales actually grew 40% year-over-year, while in-store sales only increased by 3%.

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If a business only sees the dollar share of offline sales, it may miss how fast the online channel is growing, and may end up investing in the slower-growing offline channel.

Furthermore, it’s important for businesses to understand not just the category, but the specific segments in which their brands are competing. In the same graphic above, online sales of litter grew by 46.6%, while in-store sales actually declined by 1.4% despite robust growth across the category.

But even that level of granularity isn't enough.  Brands need to understand how their online sales are being fulfilled.  A deeper view into litter reveals that delivery and click-and-collect are the two dominant fulfillment methods driving sales.  However, the data below clearly shows pickup growing at a rate nearly double that of shipped and delivery.  Without a precise, de-deduplicated dataset, the double counting of pickup sales would equate to an overstatement of $50M in total litter sales. In today's omnichannel environment, directional data simply isn't good enough. Precision matters.


Say goodbye to unreliable data sets and confusing metrics

A business without a unified, category-level view of omnichannel sales could miss out on key insights in one category such as pet care, but it could also fall behind in total sales measurement.

Untangling this kind of data analysis with a home-grown omnisales solution is complicated. Validating data in a system of multiple, disparate sources is challenging or even impossible to validate.

NielsenIQ’s proprietary deduplication and category harmonization methodologies can address these challenges and let you focus on delivering results. If you’d like to see what a single, comprehensive view of your omnichannel sales looks like – and how it can help you make better strategic decisions - sign up for a free trial of NielsenIQ Omnisales today.

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