Simple Human Deserves Better Displays

 Brands and retailers should work together to create a positive customer experience by displaying products in a visually appealing way. Case in point – Simple Human’s $129 soap dispensers grouped with cheaper options may not work out for both brands.

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Hi. Welcome to Retail Mashup. I’m DeAnn. I’m Larry. This is the podcast where we talk about the intersection between customer experience and running a profitable retail business.

Case Study: Simple Human And Its Soap Dispensers

Larry, I am constantly in stores and I wanted to share something that I saw recently in a store that sells organizing items. And it’s one of my favorite stores. I won’t mention the name, but it’s a place I spend a lot of time and I was struck by an end cap that I saw that was kind of cleaning product related. At eye level in the prime position, they had these you know, five and $6 hand pump dis soap dispensers on the very bottom shelf at ankle level.

$6 Versus $129 Soap Dispensers

They had these beautiful simple human soap dispensers for $29, but you had to get on your hands and knees to see the price, and that’s a lot of money for a hand dispenser, especially considering when it’s being displayed with $6- hand pump style, just soap dispensers. I just started to think as I looked around the store, and I see this in almost every retail environment where they have a beautiful product that they’re selling.

It’s a reasonable price. But you have to allow the customer to see it. $129 is a lot to ask for a soap dispenser. If you pick it up and you feel the weight of the product and you can instantly see the quality, is there. This is a product that’s gonna last for years and suddenly $129 doesn’t seem quite so bad, and now you’re thinking through the possibilities instead of the challenges of spending that kind of money.

Handle With Care

But only if you can see it first, pick it up to hold it, and understand the quality. So Simple Human has not done. They’ve not served themselves well in working with this retailer to understand what the customer needs to engage with their product and how to help that retailer display the product.

Simple Human is known for embedding electronic sensors into every day home items like soap dispensers and trash cans, etc. to createa more hands free experience. Source: YouTube

When you think about what a retailer has to do in running a store, a lot is going on. They have staff, they have physical space to maintain, they have a lot of different displays, a whole cornucopia of brands that they have to represent and they do the best that they can. Some do a very good job and some do a reasonable job.

The brands that succeed the most are the ones actively involved in helping retailer create the tools they need to display and create an experience around their product. Going back to the simple human dispenser, did Simple Human work with this store to establish guidelines on how, where it should be placed, what height, and what it needs, and take one out of the box so people can see the product and pick it up.

Did they create extra signage or some content that they would ship with the product to help retailers understand the planogram? Where does it go on the shelf? What other products does it sell best with? Is there some kind of advertising content, be it digital or print that comes with the product to be placed on the display to help customers understand what’s going on with the product?

Simple Human’s $130 soap dispenser – “The perfect tool for dispensing soap touch-free without leaving germs behind. Optimized for effortless, efficient dishwashing with a matching stainless steel caddy that perfectly fits the pump and stores a sponge so it’s always at your fingertips. Holds 50% more soap than our standard pump so you’ll refill less often.”

You go into any drugstore and you see the amount of money that Proctor and Gamble and Johnson and Johnson spend creating these beautiful framing devices that go on shelves to highlight their allergy medicines or their pain medications or their sleep medications. So they get it.

They understand that they have as much responsibility for selling the product as their retail partners do, and they’re gonna do whatever they can to help. But some of these other brands just either don’t have the resources, the time, or the internal teams to think this through, or it just hasn’t occurred to them.

They’re happy to let their wholesale partnerships do all the heavy lifting and they’re just gonna take whatever they take. In today’s retail environment, margins are so tight and everyone is looking for more money. Simple human, if they ever wanna go public, Or they’re working with retailers who are going public, who are already publicly traded.

The top line and bottom line revenues matter when it comes to value company valuation and shareholder stock price. Anything that you can do to increase sales, build a connection with customers, and improve the customer experience is going to pay off.

Yet time after time, I see situations like this. This storage store that just sticks products wherever, don’t think about the customer experience and doesn’t think about the benefits to them. How much margin is this retailer making on a $6 hand pump dispenser versus the margin that they would make if they sold this $129 touchless soap dispenser?

The Discussion

Well, first of all, I don’t know if I would need a $129 soap dispenser or a hand pump, a $6 pump sounds good to me. But with that said, I thought about it from a brand strategy perspective. If you are a product owner and you have a new product at a store, it should be a very exciting time for you, especially if it’s a new store and new partnership, and it’s your responsibility as well as the store’s responsibility in enga in engaging the potential customer.

In managing the expectations inside the store in monitoring the customer experience to make sure that it’s the right experience because we can plan. But we don’t know everything until we observe what happens. Finally, make sure that the journey of the new product can be aligned with other products of a similar nature. If I am going to buy, Soap then having a soap dispenser may make sense especially if it’s a bottle of soap that does not have a dispense component to save the environment.

Buying a $6 generic soap pump vs a $129 electronic version is all about brand engagement, value, and customer care. Simple Human could build a better customer relationship with an improved brand display. Don’t leave important touchpoint to the retailer or wholesaler. Source: Alesia Kozik at Pexels

Effort Required

I heard what you said and it seemed like there wasn’t a big enough effort for both sides, the store and the brand to work together to come up with the right customer experience for that particular product. The experience may be similar to other products or maybe it’s very different, but we as consumers want to know that you care about us and care about our needs. When it comes to having the right product at the store and having it featured at the store level with the right information and pricing, it’s very important, especially if it’s a new product.

Suppose a consumer does not see that someone took the care to help him. Learn about the product or build awareness then the possibility of me passing it or not paying attention to it would increase. That is not the goal of any company trying to break into a store or any brands that already have a placement at the store.

Taking Control Over The Entire Custmer Experience Journey

You don’t want me to lose focus. You want me to have that attention. For brands that are already at a store or brands that are getting into a store, it’s important to think about the entire customer experience journey. From discovery to acquisition, to onboarding and afterwards to make sure that it’s a memorable experience and that I would go buy it over and over again.

Case Study: Dyson’s $500 Hair Dryer

Yeah. I think Dyson would be a great example of how this should work. This is important, especially now because the economy is tight and data is showing that customers are already starting to trade down if you’re A brand with an expensive product, like the $129 soap dispenser or Dyson with its $500 hair dryer.

Dyson Supersonic costs up to $500. The brand uses store displays, online contents, and influencer reviews as ways to showcase its value and maximize reasons why the product is worth buying over products costing 50% less. Source: YouTube

You need to be aware that people are actively looking for lesser options and so you are facing a headwind now more than perhaps in the past. And so it’s, it’s time to start thinking of your brand and, and your presence in a store as if you are a shop and shop seller. Even if you only have, a two-foot piece of shelf space.

What Is Girl Math?

Think of. Selling your brand as you would if you had a shop and shop set down in the middle of a store. And so how are you going to create an experience that helps people understand the value and benefit of your product? How are you gonna give them a sense of what it’s gonna be like to have it in their daily life, and ways to justify what they call it?

I hate the term. But it’s girl math. I don’t know if you’ve ever heard the term, “Girl Math”. Mm-hmm. It’s where instead of looking at a $500 blazer as an expensive blazer, you say, well, I’m gonna have this for 10 years and I’m gonna wear it all the time because it’s a classic cut. So it’s not a $500 blazer, it’s a blazer that only gonna cost me 50 cents per wear.

Suddenly that seems like a deal. Like, holy cow, that’s a bargain. Mm-hmm. It’s the same thing with expensive brands and products. Give people a way to understand the value. The length of time and you’re gonna be spending less money ’cause you’re gonna have this three times longer than the following cheapest product.

You can’t do that if you don’t communicate in some way, shape, or form with the customers. Investing time as a brand in that process of how you can convey this, how you can provide some tools, some digital content, some signage, some. Something to that, you ship with your product to the retailer where it’s kind of a kit in a box.

They open the box, and they put everything on the shelf, just the way you’ve shown it. You can even provide them guidelines on where in the store it should go to sell best because the retailer wants it to sell just as much as you do. Start thinking about yourself as a direct-to-consumer connection instead of leaning too heavily on the wholesaler to do all the heavy lifting.

Sounds like we’re gonna have more discussion about this topic in the future. On that note, if you like this episode, please like and subscribe to Retail Matchup the podcast, and we will talk to you next time.

Key Summary

DeAnn and Larry discuss the importance of brands and retailers working together to create a positive customer experience. They argue that brands like Simple Human should take more control and work with retailers to ensure that their products are displayed in a visually appealing and easy-to-find way.

They also discuss how brands (e.g., Dyson) can use storytelling to create a connection with customers and make their products more appealing.

Biggest antidote: By working together, brands and retailers can create a positive customer experience that will lead to more sales and long-term loyalty.

Here are some of the key points:

Brands should work with retailers to ensure that their products are displayed in a way that is visually appealing and easy to find.

Brands can use storytelling to create a connection with customers and make their products more appealing.

By working together, brands and retailers can create a positive customer experience that will lead to more sales and long-term loyalty.

* Retail Mashup made some modifications to the transcript to improve understandability and flow.

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