Planogram Software Comparison Guide
Worldwide there is a small group of planogram software suppliers. However, there are large differences in quality, functionality and software support between those planogram suppliers. So how do you compare planogram software systems and choose a planogram software application that fits your requirements and budget?
As we have been experts in the planogram software industry for over 30 years and talked to thousands of companies looking for the planogram solutions that fit with their needs, we would like to provide you with a guide to help you compare planogram software systems and ultimately choose the right space planning solution for you.
Follow our 8-step comparison schedule below and make a thought-out choose regarding your planogram software:
1. Data Integration
Every planogram design starts with data such as product dimensions, product sales data, inventory data and Point Of Sale data. A planogram software application that integrates efficiently and smoothly with your existing systems and data servers is essential for a good working space planning system. Hence, it is important to ask the following questions when comparing planogram software:
- How is my product data pushed into the planogram software?
- How does the planogram software gets updated when changes are made in the data source?
- Can the planogram software be integrated with existing systems such as POS software, inventory data and data servers?
Determine how the planogram system will function within your existing environment and ensure that the software is competent with your existing systems so that the data flow in and out of the planogram software is efficient.
2. Assortment Planning
For retailers, planogram design starts with the analysis of the product assortment and the product range. Based on this product assortment review, the range is decided, and the products are placed on the shelves.
Most planogram software applications offer some form of assortment analysis, the quality in analysis differs greatly though. Some applications offer basic, traditional space and sales analysis which usability is low. Modern planogram applications offer practical analysis reports and dashboards with actionable assortment recommendations.
Comprehensive, professional planogram software applications offer assortment planner software in additional to planogram software. These assortment or range planner optimisation software application offer in-depth analysis on the product sales and relate this to the product space on the shelves. The use of these type of software applications can result in large profit increases for retailers.
When a space planning software supplier provides assortment or range planning software, it is important to check that this application is in the same software interface as the planogram software and that the two are completely linked to one another.
3. Easy to Use
It is important to determine who will be using the planogram software before choosing a software application. Users might have a different level of space planning and computer literacy; therefore, you want to choose a planogram software application that is easy and intuitive in its use without giving in on functionality. Software technology is improving quickly and so should planogram software. Choose a software application that is regularly updated and has a modern user interface and employs commonly used key strokes.
Ask for a demonstration of the planogram software before purchasing the space planning software to check its user friendliness. Also, assure that the software supplier offers personal, comprehensive training so that all your users get most out of the software. Click here if you are interested to organise a demo of Scorpion planogram software.
4. Floor Planning
Micro space planning (planogram software) looks at your fixtures and shelves. In addition to micro space planning, macro space planning (floor or store planning) is concerned with every inch of your total retail floor space. By using macro space planning or floor planning, the retailer can design planograms and floor plans that meet the local demand.
When choosing a planogram software application it is important to ask yourself if macro space planning is needed as well. Even if store planning is not relevant for your company at this moment, if you anticipate that this might be of interest in the future, select a planogram application that also offers floor planning. This will prevent a wastage of time and money in the future when your company expands their space planning activities.
When a supplier offers both store and planogram software, make sure that these applications are in the same software interface and are completely linked with one another because this ensures an efficient and smooth space planning solution.
5. Planogram Visuals
How important is the quality of the planogram visuals for your company? Professional planogram visuals is often a fundamental requirement for suppliers, as these planograms are part of their sales tool. Clumsy and unrealistic looking planograms often defeat the purpose of using planogram software for suppliers and manufacturers.
For retailers, visuals can be less of a decisive factor when choosing planogram software. However, when retail stores receive their planograms, it is important that the planograms are clear, and that the stores have a consistent look. The Point Of Sales should be placed correctly and shelves should have a clear and shopper friendly layout.
Visuals of professional quality also assist the planogrammer or visual merchandiser in designing their shelves and stores. Especially by using 3D functions, the planogram designer can evaluate the look of the store and shelves from behind their desk. They can design planograms with the shopper in mind and view the planogram from the shopper’s perspective.
All these factors are important to consider when comparing planogram tools. Click here for examples of planograms in Scorpion planogram software.
6. Support and Industry Expertise
Support is essential to a good functioning planogram solution. Whether you are planning on using your planogram software on a frequent basis, or if you will only use the planogram software sporadically, the software support should be one of your key points in the decision-making process. However often you anticipate on using planogram software, the support should always be perfect. The planogram software users should be able to pick up the phone, call the support service or email them and get immediate support on any of their questions. Not all planogram software suppliers offer support, especially internet-based companies can have limited support. Make sure that support is offered.
Space planning expertise is an important indicator of the quality of the support provided. Some companies work with call centres, where support workers have limited knowledge of space planning and the software. If space planning is relatively new to your business or you have a large business with complex structures and plans, you might require support that goes beyond planogram software enquiries. You might want advice on your space planning structure and understand the best practises from experts in the space planning industry. Besides making sure support is offered, confirm that the quality of support offered, fits with your users and companies’ requirements.
The data that you use when creating planograms with planogram software can be highly confidential. Examples of data that can be used is product dimensions, product images and product sales data. Hence, the security of the planogram system you are choosing is very important. Do the software suppliers have access to your data? Does the information leave your companies’ internal environment? Where is this data stored and who can access it? We advise companies to ask the software suppliers these questions and confirm the software will not form any risk to the companies’ environment.
Although budget comes last in our list, it is definitely an important factor when purchasing planogram software. The price range between different planogram software applications is large and so are the functionalities and capabilities of those systems. The lower price range applications are incomparable with the higher price range planogram software systems. We can only advise to make sure the system of your choice checks all your requirements and that you get value for your money.