Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Purge Expired Products

When someone buys a product from your store, you’d like them to experience that product at its best. If the product is perishable, you’ll be concerned with expiration dates.
  • Laws may require you to purge expired products from your shelves. Last week, Walmart agreed to pay the State of New Jersey $775,000, part of that to settle charges that it sold infant formula and non-prescription drugs beyond their marked expiration dates. Such sales are forbidden by federal law. Some state laws forbid sale of certain food items after their expiration dates. The publicity that could follow charges of violating national, state, or local laws would leave your target audiences with a bad taste regarding your business.
  • Your customers who take home a product with a date on it can easily be confused as to what the date indicates. “Expiration date” means the last date a food should be eaten or used. But you customers might also encounter “sell by,” “best if used by,” “guaranteed fresh until,” the often cryptically-formatted “pack date,” and the “born on” seen on beer bottles. Confusion can irritate customers. Prepare your staff to answer questions about what these expiration and freshness dates mean.
  • Encourage purchasers to return for exchange any unused product that goes beyond its expiration date, even if purchased months ago. Researchers at Baruch College find that after someone acquires a product and works through any initial regrets, they tend to hesitate discarding the product after an expiration date. As a result, they’ll use an inferior product, becoming less likely to purchase that sort of item and brand from you in the future.
  • As I said, you’d like your customers to experience perishable products at their best. For some customers, “at their best” means they intentionally wait a while until the price goes down substantially. I’ll call this the Day Old Bread Effect. although it’s by no means limited to food items. The Syms stores’ discounting policy is an example. Stamped on the back of each price ticket on women’s dresses is the date the item was placed on the sales floor, and stamped on the front is a series of dollar amounts in descending order. Every ten selling days, the price moves to the next lower amount on the ticket.
Click below for more:
Promote Sales from Product Recalls
Leverage Barriers to Increase Value
Make Your Shoppers Feel Smart

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