Brick and mortar retail leaders spend a significant amount of time setting visual merchandising
standards, yet the path to successful execution isn’t always smooth. Monitoring and tracking visual
merchandising compliance are imperative to ensuring the frontline is executing those standards and
providing a consistent customer experience, yet many retailers don’t have a system in place for doing
At the same time, the risks for non-compliance are obvious and significant– from brand consistency to
ensuring customers are seeing accurate and timely promotions, optimizing retail operations includes
having strong compliance rates across locations. Many organizations have found themselves evaluating
compliance and the implications of non-compliance after the fact, but that’s a luxury that many don’t
have in a post-pandemic world. Retailers who look at and manage compliance rates reactively often end up
spending unnecessary time and resources evaluating the situation and what went wrong.
OR helps retailers approach compliance strategically so that there are no surprises, and no guesswork.
Having a plan to oversee, monitor and report compliance levels are critical to successful and consistent
execution at the store level, with three overarching reasons to take a proactive approach:
1. Store performance.
With sub-par compliance levels, stores can find themselves reacting to the
fallout of customers seeing incorrect pricing or promotions. Similarly, mismanaged campaigns and low
compliance levels can result in missed sales, which impacts the bottom line and store performance. High
compliance rates have the power to significantly impact store sales. For many of OR’s clients, we see
that stores that are more than 95% compliant drive sales that are 2-3 times that of stores that are less
than 40% compliant.
2. Brand integrity and loyalty.
A consistent brand experience has a direct impact on loyalty and
the customer journey. Inconsistent signage and chaotic displays negatively affect how customers view and
experience a brand. By raising the bar on in-store compliance and ensuring the frontline is aware of and
prioritizing visual merchandising standards, retailers can instill loyalty and confidence.
Understanding which stores are compliant and which aren’t empowers retailer
leaders to know where and when to focus their efforts. Only with detailed visibility into in-store
compliance can management fully optimize their operations while saving themselves time and money.
Compliance tools are also becoming easier to use and providing even more value to retailers. OR, for
example, has started incorporating AI technology with the platform’s Automated Photo Compliance (APC)
feature. APC makes it easy for employees to execute a store fixture, confirm its level of compliance, or
report an issue by directing their phone at a display. It also means HQ receives real time reporting on
when a fixture is executed, and has an efficient compliance process in place that doesn’t require a
manual review of thousands of pictures.
Google recently looked
at the use of AI and ML across retail, and found some staggering numbers – “For
Food, Drug, Mass merchant retail the research showed that the application of AI/ML technologies can
potentially drive ~$280-650B across the value chain as adoption accelerates. Similarly for Speciality
Retailers the research found a potential to deliver ~$230-520B in value by 2023. In an industry where
profit margins are in the single digits, AI/ML is increasingly a foundational investment area for retail
leaders.” The immediate and long-term benefits to retailers of incorporating AI and ML are significant,
and compliance is one area where it has a direct impact on store performance.
In brick and mortar, compliance is about getting it right from planning to execution. It's about
accountability, great training, and constant tracking. By taking a proactive approach to managing
compliance levels and understanding variances across locations, retailers can feel confident in strong
and consistent in-store execution.
OR makes it easy to develop a strategy for compliance, provide clear direction to stores, and have full
visibility into those stores that are achieving compliance as well as those that need a bit of extra
help. Let OR help you increase your competitiveness by elevating your in-store compliance rates.