National Home Improvement & Hardware Retailer

For any large-store format retailer, getting customers in the door is only a first step. To keep customers happy once they’re inside, employees need to be focused on serving them, not updating shelf price tags and signage for weekly promotions. But this is a big job that needs a smart approach. Inefficient production and distribution of in-store signage led to unnecessary business risks.

Challenge

Each week, this retailer showcases special offers, manufacturers’ promotions and seasonal merchandise through multiple channels. Quad has printed their circulars and done the media planning and placement for 20 years. After conversations with executives to understand their needs and goals, it was clear to us that:

  • They understood how tailoring offers to stores based on past sales and available inventory improved ROI, but the complexity of executing this at scale was overwhelming
  • The company was using data from different streams to order and create individual store signage. They were not able to bring it together for corporate visibility and to then optimize for waste and store experience.
  • The client wanted to get promotions into local markets faster, without breaking the budget
  • Store employees were spending too much time with their backs to the aisles—and customers—adjusting price tags and signage

Solution

Quad first performed an extensive business process review and then used a combination of technology and hands-on expertise to:

  • Collect all the retailer’s data, validate and unify it into one source
  • Create a customized multifunction portal that each store could access to:
    • Collect and verify store data for the weekly signage and tab programs
    • Drive fulfillment
    • Automate workflow for sign re-ordering and print-on-demand in case a sign gets damaged or needs to be replaced
  • Develop a dynamic kit-building system using store walk sequences to simplify installation of new signage
  • Use Quad’s advanced print platform to produce variable signage content fast so it could easily be customized to each store’s profile
  • Tailor sign formats, content and quantities to individual store needs
  • Install a five-person onsite team at the client’s headquarters to manage data and get it into the signage workstream

Impact

The solutions have only been in place since September 2019, but are already improving the bottom line. So far these efforts have:

  • Eliminated two weeks in signage production, increasing speed to market
  • Reduced resources to install signage in-store, freeing employees to focus on customers
  • Cut significant waste by producing and delivering signs that matched stores’ individual needs
  • Provided a one-stop-shop for communication between stores and corporate for two-way communication and last minute changes

The client has also asked its independent brand name merchandise manufacturers to work directly with Quad to produce their promotional signage, to be integrated into the new system.