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Changing your digital shelf analytics vendor: 3 things smart CPGs get right
This post has been updated and was originally published April 2021
CPGs are under great pressure to adjust team capabilities and tools quickly to retain category share online. We summarized three things that matter when sourcing and transitioning digital shelf analytics vendors.
While change is now a company’s companion, the eCommerce explosion has caught large CPG businesses by surprise. They are now under great pressure to adjust capabilities and tools quickly to retain category share and fend off the competition. However, as many as 70% of organizational change projects fail according to McKinsey & Partner.
Organizations that master company-wide transformation have a sharp, competitive advantage: with the ability to pivot and reinvent ways of working — particularly introducing or adding to their tech stack allowing frontline teams to act faster and at scale — brand owners set their organizations apart, achieve ambitious goals and drive innovation.
However, flexing change-muscles isn’t easy. In fact, lack of clear objectives and support from new vendors are common stumbling blocks that prevent great CPG businesses from reaching their full growth potential.
Einstein famously said, “We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.” Here are three things that matter when transitioning Digital Shelf Analytics vendors.
1. Find a digital shelf analytics vendor that does the ‘heavy lifting’
What’s the worst case scenario? Poor onboarding documentation from the vendor, never ending manual input of set-up information and no clear objective settings. Sadly, these are only a few of the obstacles around the onboarding phase that hold CPG organizations back from changing vendors.
“Better the devil you know” seems an easier option given the disruption a change in technology can cause. For good reason: the cost-benefit analysis of staying put looks bright on the surface. After all, we humans inherently fear change. In fact, we want things to stay the same but get better.
Truth is, it won’t happen. So instead of being directed by fear, what if you’d find a vendor with a Transition Director and a team of Customer Success Managers whose single goal is to help you transition at pace with minimal set up work for you? No endless spreadsheets to complete — ultimately seasoned industry experts should pre-empt the information they require to onboard your teams seamlessly to their service. A vendor that knows exactly what needs done to integrate with your existing tech stack e.g. PIM integration.
Sounds nearly too good to be true? But it’s what e.fundamentals does: deliver a personalized, market-tailored implementation plan to get you from a standing start to a growing digital commerce performance in a matter of weeks. So the question is: can you afford not to change when that change is made seamless for you?!
2. Find a partner that aligns to your eCommerce objectives
Regardless of size, most organizations continue to struggle with company-wide changes for another key aspect: misaligned or unclear objectives.
Imagine the last time you onboarded a vendor, did they spend the critical time in the beginning to set realistic expectations, identify training needs specific to the roles of frontline managers? And what about working with change agents across your organization? Has your vendor worked together with people at governance level to help drive excitement about the new platform? Chances are they haven’t helped much with any of this.
Here’s another approach: Right from the implementation stage, e.fundamentals spend time understanding your business goals. By knowing what you want to achieve we tailor the platform to provide the insights for teams to gain competitive advantage at speed and scale in your category, across local and global retail partners. Doing it this way also helps us understand your language, focus on the biggest buckets of work and have a common goal with each team in your business.
3. Secure seamless implementation from day 1
Now this one is critical: if you manage to find a vendor that ensures a seamless process from day 1 that’s half the return on investment. Sadly, too many vendors make things complicated with endless trails of communication, miles of spreadsheets and lists to be completed or never-ending UAT testing. And not to mention the category set up — how can you make strategic decisions if you don’t have a full-category view across all SKUs and retailers?
Our approach to implementation ensures that there’s little investment from you required. After all, e.fundamentals’ tried and tested methods have nearly eliminated manual input from you. As seasoned industry experts we know what information we need to get you onboarded smoothly and securely, and with a full-category view right from the start.
At e.fundamentals we consider our support with the integration of the platform across your business essential to our mutual success. Our Transition Director and Customer Success Team helps frontline managers build both the capability and knowledge at a local level, keeping the focus on data-driven actions. We provide a clear action plan for the work streams of each individual (market) team.
So, think back to the moment you onboarded your current vendor and see if they ticked all the boxes. Thought so — it might be time for a successful change.
Why e.fundamentals’ digital shelf analytics onboarding is different
- We do the ‘heavy lifting’ for you — Our onboarding is very low touch with little input from the client. Switching providers could be difficult, e.fundamentals make it easy. Our sophisticated data management techniques save you hours of wasted data entry. We have done this across thousands of products and categories and have learned how to enable clients to hit the ground running from day 1.
- We align to your ecommerce objectives — Right from the implementation stage, we spend time understanding your business goals. By knowing what you want to achieve we tailor the implementation and support model to provide the insights for teams to gain competitive advantage at speed and scale across local and global retail partners. This also helps us understand your language, focus on the biggest buckets of work and have a common goal with each team in your business.
- Ensure a seamless implementation from day 1 — From the day of platform launch your teams are ready, your full-category insights are there so all you need to do is act. We make switching to e.fundamentals a seamless process. Our Transition Director and Customer Success Team ensure that our clients can be ‘hands-off’ during the implementation of our service. We support the integration of the platform across your existing tech stack and with more in-depth, role-specific training plans than any other provider in the entire industry.
“Partnering with e.fundamentals will help us protect and grow our online market share across Europe and the UK going forward. We’re thrilled to have found a solutions provider that will deliver the strategic insights required to power our category growth and complements our operational approach..”
— Ecommerce leader, international beverage brand