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Generating Category Reviews

Any given retail store can stock thousands of SKUs. For large format retailers like Whole Foods Market or Target, that number can quickly balloon into the tens of thousands. That’s a lot of products to keep track of.

To ensure the right products are making their way onto store shelves, many retailers follow a process known as category reviews.

Retail buyers use these review periods to assess the performance of an individual category — like grocery, home, beauty and many others. During this time buyers evaluate their promotional spend, planogram layouts (store layouts) and determine their product assortment and strategy.

As a supplier it’s important to know that buyers conduct category reviews at different times and frequencies throughout the year. For example, one retailer may conduct a frozen foods review twice a year while another may assess their frozen assortment just once. Some retailers won’t even use calendar-based category reviews and will instead look for products year-round.

This means you could be waiting almost a year before your product gets seen by a certain retail buyer, but it also means you need to be prepared for reviews all year.