How Competitive Intelligence Can Win Business

Competitive Intelligence helps to identify how your product compares to competitors and provides you with data-driven information that can be leveraged for space on retailers' shelves.

10 September 2014

Retailers are responsible for ensuring the products they select for the shelf space have the proper balance of price and performance in order to meet consumer demands and maintain consumer loyalty.  Retailers often rely on vendors and manufacturers to promote why their product deserves a place on the retailer's store shelf instead of the competition.

For vendors, manufacturers, and anyone selling or manufacturing their own products, providing documentation to verify your product's performance is a vital step towards securing space on the store shelf.

How do you demonstrate to retailers that your product is higher in quality and out-performs the competition?

While it may sound complicated and impossible to do, the solution comes with two words: Competitive Intelligence.

What is Competitive Intelligence?

Competitive Intelligence shows exactly how your product compares to your competitors. This product comparison offers valuable insight into your products while providing performance data of competing products. The results of this data-driven comparison often directly impact product quality, price, performance claims, and marketing decisions.

Why Should You Have Competitive Intelligence?

An independent third-party can determine how your product performs against the competition through comparison analysis of performance testing. While many products are required to comply with industry standards or issue certifications, these are just minimum requirements.  Performance driven comparisons allow further insight into true product performance, while providing non-biased results to a potential buyer.

Using competitive intelligence will not only prepare products for upcoming line reviews, but it can also help reveal potential quality issues and gaps in the market that need development. Discovering issues before items reach the end consumer can save time and money from lost business, recalls, and returns.

As more companies continue to enter the market and fight for shelf space, those who don't utilize performance comparisons are likely to end up left behind.  Regardless of the specific goal, the benefits are endless and lead directly back to consumers.  The continuous improvement of the customer experience is the key to sustained retail growth and can be achieved through competitive intelligence.

Jonathan Morgan is a Project Manager in Intertek’s Product Performance Consulting group. With a focus on Business Development, Jonathan aims to improve the retail experience by providing clients with the tools necessary to properly execute their strategy and make better business decisions. He does this through evaluating product categories and determining the best product and strategy for the client’s customers. Jonathan earned is B.S. in Engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology.