What are Retailers’ Top Merchandise Planning Priorities for 2016?

According to a new special report from BRP, retailers are finding that many of their current merchandise planning applications are ineffective and unable to support the complex analysis required to optimize planning decisions and ultimately, meet the demands of today’s customer. In addition to replacing out-of-date planning applications, 58% of retailers are focused on improving analytics by using science and advanced algorithms to help predict demand and enable smarter merchandise buying and planning decisions.

“Many retailers have relied on outdated legacy planning systems and practices that can’t support the complex planning requirements of today’s omni-channel environment. The good news is that retailers realize this issue and 63% plan to upgrade or replace their merchandise planning systems within two years.” – Gene Bornac, Vice President, Boston Retail Partners.

2016 Special Report - Merchandise Planning Priorities According to the BRP SPECIAL REPORT: Top 10 Merchandise Planning Priorities for 2016, improving analytics is retailers’ top planning priority. This report, based on the recent BRP Merchandise Planning Survey of retail executives, highlights retailers’ top priorities and identifies how retailers are adapting their planning approaches and tools to effectively manage merchandise in an omni-channel world.

With the advent of real-time business intelligence (RTBI) across the enterprise, retailers have access to product and customer intelligence whenever and wherever it is needed – creating the opportunity to enhance the planning process. With 58% of retailers indicating analytics as their top planning priority, savvy retailers realize the value of advanced analytics to tap into RTBI and use science to make better planning decisions in real-time.


The top three priorities are:

1. Improve analytics – 58%

2. Reduce markdowns – 36%

3. Better integrate assortment and space planning – 36%

I encourage you to read the report to serve as a benchmark comparison to your current retail capabilities and a checklist of additional competencies needed to improve planning effectiveness.

Download the complete report:

BRP SPECIAL REPORT: Top 10 Merchandise Planning Priorities for 2016

I hope you enjoy the report and welcome your comments and feedback. Please share your comments below.


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