Ask any consumer what rationale guides their decision-making when it comes to retail purchases, and pricing will almost certainly emerge as one of the most prominent considerations. Because of this, business owners understand that the strategy they apply to their pricing can make all the difference in the long-term success they achieve (or don’t achieve) with their customers. However, though the importance of pricing is well-known, the tools available to optimize it may not be in place when it comes to your business. In particular, automated price monitoring may prove to be a major factor in boosting your sales.
Introducing Automated Price Monitoring
Price competition is a dangerous game to get caught up in. Ease up on your vigilance for just a moment, and your company could easily risk profits in favor of keeping your costs low enough to (presumably) attract customers. Yet, a number of pricing strategies exist to help you more effectively boost sales, putting the power of your business back in your own hands.
Essentially, an automated system keeps a close eye on competitors and formulates data based on their price points. Such a tool saves your business time in having to manually check in with companies within your industry and produces invaluable analysis reports to guide your own pricing decisions. Though the specifics of these analytics can be tailored to fit the specific needs of your company, the knowledge of the fluid pricing structure of your competitors provides you with the data you need to win more and more customers.
Benefits of Automated Price Monitoring
As mentioned, automated price monitoring is fast becoming less of a luxurious item and more of an industry standard. Its sophisticated process truly alleviates the guesswork of the retail space, producing an arena in which competitors in a certain product niche operate at higher levels than ever before. In addition to simply retaining relevance in a changing market, here are some of the basic advantages of putting such an automated price monitoring system in place:
- Instant updates: Tracking the pricing movements of chief competitors within the market allows you to receive the latest real-time data at a moment’s notice and grants you the ability to adjust your strategy in a timely fashion, if necessary. Rather than spending weeks or months waiting for the latest figures, you can have high-level, actionable analysis at your fingertips in no time flat.
- Build brand loyalty: Because pricing is such a key factor in building customer relationships, price monitoring (and the subsequent adjustment of your own pricing structure) maximizes customer retention and gives your company the chance to shape the way your brand is perceived. Lower prices can sometimes undermine the perceived value of your product and do more harm than good.
- Expose the “gray market”: Price monitoring can oftentimes help you locate unauthorized resellers of your product known as “gray market sellers.” How you proceed once this particular brand of competitors is exposed is up to you, but having a system in place to more easily identify them is a smart way to control your product’s position in the marketplace.
- Develop stronger minimum advertised price (MAP) policies: With so much more data at your disposal, your company will soon find itself in a far better position to assess the market and institute stronger MAP policies with retailers and distributors of your product. Moreover, such knowledge makes it easier to enforce these agreements and control your product’s price point so that all involved continue turning a profit.
The Way of the Future
Automation is increasingly becoming an indispensable way to maximize the efficiency of your business operations. By putting streamlined systems in place to monitor pricing, you’re able to turn your attention to other areas of need within your business and can elevate your ability to contend with competition. Even so, automated price monitoring isn’t a one-stop solution, but as part of a thorough strategy, it’s a smart way to stay up on the latest innovations and connect with customers on a more resonant level.
For more details about how to maximize the positive effect pricing can have on your business, check out our new eBook, “A Comprehensive Guide to Competitive Online Retail Pricing Strategies.”