Analysing Retail Sales Data

Deborah Dowling

Senior Merchandiser & Data Analyst @The WBE

Retail is changing fast and in a more challenging market businesses need to adapt and update in order to stay ahead of the game. Technology & data is at the forefront and leading retailers are using multiple channels & platforms and becoming more competitive 

Why is analysing retail sales data so important?

how retail is changing

The Retail industry is changing, retailers are being forced to adapt. Customers’ shopping behaviours have changed.  They have more information to help them make a purchasing decision, more methods of making a purchase and more ways of being encouraged to shop with a particular retailer. It’s all about the customer and the customer’s experience. The shopping experience must be easy and enjoyable 


Data is playing a bigger role in retail and proactive retailers will continue to use data in their sales, marketing, customer service and business strategy. The amount and type of data available has changed and successful retailers use this to understand their customers, competitors and future trends. It’s important to realise that this is important for all sizes of business. Smaller retailers can use data to make key business decisions, ensure they remain competitive & achieve positive results.

‘Some 62 percent of retailers report that the use of  Big Data and analytics is creating a competitive advantage for their organizations’

(Source: August 7th 2013, Patricia Vekich Waldron,Global Director at IBM) 

‘Whether you use cloud-based accounting or Epos systems, getting the numbers right will add up to a healthy business’ 

(Source: Drapers Online, 26 FEBRUARY 2015 BY )

Rapid change is driving retailers to reconfigure their business models. Driven by digital transformation and the changing behaviour of tech savvy shoppers who engage across multiple channels, retailers are challenged to increase operational efficiency and reduce costs whilst competing with brands that want to get closer to their customers’

 Source (Retail Business Technology Expo, May 2018)

Why EPOS Systems are a vital tool for Retailers 

Better Inventory Management

EPOS systems can prevent out of stocks of key products

Accurate Accounting and Analysis

EPOS systems ensure accuracy in a companny’s accounting practises & can be used to enhance sales analysis, to spot discrepancies and opportunities for improvement. 

How does a Data Analyst or Merchandiser help with this?

A Merchandiser is behind how much a Retailer will sell of something and where.  

Merchandisers play a key role in forecasting demand and keeping retailers on top in a highly competitive sector.  They are responsible for ensuring that the right stock is in the right place at the right time, in the right quantities and at the right price.  They ensure that the right amount of money is spent and what the best products and how many of them should be bought. They forecast profits and sales, ensuring best sellers do not sell out.  

Retail merchandisers predict up-and-coming sales trends to ensure maximum profitability

 Merchandisers play a key role within retail, as profits can be affected by how successfully they undertake their work. Merchandisers set prices to maximise profits and manage the performance of ranges, planning promotions and markdowns as necessary


‘From round-the-clock opening times to online shopping, retail organisations are offering more and more incentives to attract and retain customers. Retail merchandising jobs play a vital role in adapting to market trends to keep growth in the sector as it continues to experience fundamental change’

(Source: Retail Choice)

Do you need more help with analysing this data and best using it to make strategical business decisions?  

With 10 years experience I can help you to make the most of this data with the following services

Consultancy sessions to teach you & your staff how to use the data

On a freelance basis to analyse the most relevant data on your behalf & work with you to utilise the information

Create customized reports that you can use on an ongoing basis with training on how to update & use the data

The reports we can create & analyse will depend on the system in place & may require some admin to enable us to categorise data

Please contact us for more information.

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