Research

Studies

GMA 2002 Worldwide OOS StudyRetail Out of Stocks: A Worldwide Examination of Causes, Rates, and Consumer Responses

Thanks for your interest in our Out-of Stock research. Our goal is to disseminate the findings of the study widely, and thus we have worked an agreement with the publisher, Grocery Manufacturers of America (GMA) to allow us to distribute the PDF of the full 66-page research report to interested parties at no cost.

To maintain some sense of continuity, please use the following citation when referencing the report within an article or as a caption, “2002 GMA Worldwide Retail Out-of-Stocks Study.”

The full bibliographic reference for the publication is: Gruen, Thomas W., Daniel Corsten and Sundar Bharadwaj (2002). Retail Out of Stocks: A Worldwide Examination of Causes, Rates, and Consumer Responses. Washington, D.C.: Grocery Manufacturers of America.

This comprehensive report examines 661 retail outlets and 71,000 consumers across 29 countries worldwide. Study was funded by a grant from the Procter & Gamble Corporation. (PDF download available here)

OOS Guide 2008 RevisionA Comprehensive Guide to Retail Out-of-Stock Reduction in the Fast-Moving Consumer Goods Industry
Gruen, Thomas W. and Daniel Corsten (2008), A Comprehensive Guide to Retail Out-of-Stock Reduction in the Fast-Moving Consumer Goods Industry, Grocery Manufacturers of America, Washington, DC, ISBN: 978-3-905613-04-9. (PDF download available here)

Publications

Desperately Seeking Shelf Availability:  An Examination of the Extent, Causes, and Efforts to Reduce Retail Out-of-Stocks
Corsten, Daniel and Thomas W. Gruen (2003), “Desperately Seeking Shelf Availability:  An Examination of the Extent, Causes, and Efforts to Reduce Retail Out-of-Stocks,”International Journal of Retail and Distribution Management, November/December. *Selected for Emerald Literati Club Award for Excellence 2004. (PDF available here)

With all the hype around efficient consumer response (ECR) and the brave new world of technologies, one would believe that retail out-of-stocks have gone down over the last ten years. That is wrong. Retailers have been struggling with considerable out-of-stocks for decades – with little evidence of improvement. A similar wrong belief is that shoppers are also still unwilling to accept low service levels. In fact, increasingly, consumers switch brands when they do not find the brand they wanted. But retailers must be wary, because the results of our research show that increasingly shoppers switch stores quickly and may never come back. So, who is to blame? The supply chain. And where to tackle it? On the shop floor. Over the past two years, we have conducted a major, worldwide study of the extent, causes, and consumer responses to out-of-stocks in the fast-moving consumer goods industry. In this article, we report these findings and provide insight to solving this chronic industry problem.

Hunting down sales-killing stockouts
Ehrenthal, J. C. (2010). Den Umsatzkillern auf der Spur (Hunting down sales-killing stockouts): Wie sich Regallücken gezielt reduzieren lassen – erfolgreiche Konzepte aus der Praxis. In Ilg, Markus (2010): Erfolgreicher handeln (pp. 74-75). Schwerte: Mu:VS and more.

Ehrenthal, J. C., & Jaronicki, K. (2010). Wachstum durch Innovation in der Retail-Supply Chain: Absatzorientierte Warenverfügbarkeit. In Der Schweizer Handel 2010: mit Innovationen wachsen (pp. 142-148). Aachen: Shaker. – ISBN 978-3-8322-8755-9. (German available from http://www.amazon.de/shops/irmgdl)

Providing on-shelf availability as desired by your customers
Ehrenthal, J., & Hofstetter, J. S. (2010). Warenverfügbarkeit, wie es Kunden verlangen (Providing on-shelf availability as desired by your customers): Konsequente Ausrichtung der Retail Supply Chain auf Konsumentenbedürfnisse. Netzwerk Logistik, 2(2), 24-26. (Available from publisher (vnl.at oder so))

Seven Eleven replenishes intraday to meet time-of-day demand
Ehrenthal, J., & Stölzle, W. (2010). Seven Eleven füllt Regale nach Uhrzeit (Seven Eleven replenishes intraday to meet time-of-day demand): Sortiment wird mehrmals täglich aktueller Nachfrage angepasst – Absatzorientiertes Warenverfügbarkeitskonzept. Lebensmittel Zeitung, 10(41), 47. (Available from publisher http://www.lebensmittelzeitung.net/)

Retail customers love on-shelf availability
Ehrenthal, J., & Stölzle, W. (2010). Käufer lieben volle Regale (Retail customers love on-shelf availability). Deutsche Logistik-Zeitung (DVZ), 125, 8. (Available from publisher http://www.dvz.de/)

Uncovering retail sales patterns
Ehrenthal, J., & Jaronicki, K. (2010). L’évolution de la demande, décodée (Uncovering retail sales patterns). Alimenta – Fachzeitschrift für die Lebensmittelwirtschaft / Publication du secteur alimentaire, 17, 21. (Available from publisher http://www.alimentaonline.ch/)

Unravelling the mystery of intraday demand
Ehrenthal, J., & Jaronicki, K. (2010). Das Geheimnis des Nachfrageverlaufs (Unravelling the mystery of intraday demand). Alimenta – Fachzeitschrift für die Lebensmittelwirtschaft / Publication du secteur alimentaire, 17, 18-21. (Available from publisher http://www.dvz.de/)

Begone, empty shopping baskets
Ehrenthal, J., & Jaronicki, K. (2010). Nie mehr leere Einkaufskörbe (Begone, empty shopping baskets). dispo, 9(41), 16-17. (Available from publisher http://www.industrieweb.at/logistik)

Reducing out-of-stocks
Ehrenthal, J. (2009). Diminuer les trous dans les étalages (Reducing out-of-stocks). Alimenta – Fachzeitschrift für die Lebensmittelwirtschaft / Publication du secteur alimentaire, 23, 15. (Available from publisher http://www.dvz.de/)

Say good-bye to your stockouts
Ehrenthal, J., & Bechter, S. (2009). Lücken geschlossen (Say good-bye to your stockouts). Logistik Heute, 12, 24-25. (Available from publisher www.logistik-heute.de/)

Ehrenthal, J. (2009). Dauerhaft weniger Lücken im Regal. Alimenta – Fachzeitschrift für die Lebensmittelwirtschaft / Publication du secteur alimentaire, 23, 13-15. (Available from publisher http://www.dvz.de/)

Out of Stock, in Empirical Generalizations about Marketing Impact
Gruen, Thomas W., Daniel Corsten, and Sundar Bharadwaj (2009),  Out of Stock, in Empirical Generalizations about Marketing Impact, Dominique M. Hanssens, Editor, Marketing Science Institute, Cambridge, MA, 2009. (Available from Amazon.com here)

Empirical Generalizations about Marketing Impact: What We Have Learned from Academic Research surveys academic research to determine what we know about the impact of marketing activities on product and company performance. With over 80 contributions from leading marketing scholars, it summarizes current knowledge about the impact of marketing spending in 16 topic areas.

Improve OOS Methods at the Shelf
Gruen, Thomas W. and Daniel Corsten (2006), “Improve OOS Methods at the Shelf,” ERI Journal, 2 (3), May/June 42-43; reprinted in Retail Technology Quarterly, July 2006, 35a.

On Shelf Availability: An Examination of the Extent, the Causes, and the Efforts to Address Retail Out-of-Stocks
Corsten, Daniel and Thomas W. Gruen (2005), “On Shelf Availability: An Examination of the Extent, the Causes, and the Efforts to Address Retail Out-of-Stocks,” in Consumer Driven Electronic Transformation: Applying New Technologies to Enthuse Consumers and Transform the Supply Chain, Doukidis, Georgios J.; Vrechopoulos, Adam P. (Eds.), Springer Press. (PDF available here)

Several trade associations such as the Grocery Manufacturers of America and the Food Marketing Institute, and joint trade-industry bodies such as ECR Europe or ECR Asia have sponsored and/or released major reports on out-of-stocks (OOS) in the past few years (see, e.g., ECR Australasia/PWC 2001; GMA 2002; ECR Europe 2003). All of this attention to OOS points to one thing: availability of products to the customer is the new battleground in the fast-moving-consumer-goods (FMCG) industry. Moreover, our research shows that 75 percent of the responsibility for OOS rests at the store level, but our research also found that improved availability will be found through retailers and suppliers working together. In an era where retail competition is so fierce than ever, retailers continue to search for ways to enhance performance. In our view, retailers are not spending enough attention to examining their own shelves, where according to our research retailers can boost earnings per share up to five percent by addressing their OOS issues. After all, where else can a retailer find so much potential revenue without spending to attract new customers? In the pages that follow, we summarize and elaborate on the findings of our OOS research project (Gruen, Corsten and Bharadwaj 2002; described in Appendix 1).

Stock-Outs Cause Walkouts
Corsten, Daniel and Thomas W. Gruen (2004), “Stock-Outs Cause Walkouts,” Harvard Business Review, May, 26-28 (PDF download available at http://hbr.org/2004/05/stock-outs-cause-walkouts/ar/pr)

Retailers find stock-outs annoying, just like everybody else. But they live with gaps in their inventory because they figure the fix is more expensive than the problem. After all, they tell themselves, when customers can’t find the products they’re after, they’ll usually substitute similar items for the missing ones. Maybe some profit will be lost in the swap, but that’s a marginal cost of doing business. Right?

Out-of-Stocks: Unraveling the Gordian Knot
Corsten, Daniel and Thomas W. Gruen (2003), “Out-of-Stocks: Unraveling the Gordian Knot,” Elsevier Food International 6 (3), September, pp. 40-45.

Retail Out-of-Stocks Under Scrutiny
Gruen, Thomas W. and Daniel Corsten (2003), “Retail Out-of-Stocks Under Scrutiny,” Executive Outlook, 3 (2), 8-19.

Rising to the Challenge of Out-Of-Stocks
Gruen, Thomas W. and Daniel Corsten (2002), “Rising to the Challenge of Out-Of-Stocks,” ECR Journal, The International Commerce Review, 2 (2), Fall, 45-58. *Reprinted in full in 3rd International ECR Research Symposium handbook, September 2003, pp. 35-41. (PDF available here)

Retailers have been struggling with out-of-stocks for decades – with little evidence of improvement. Just what causes the problem? How big is it? And could we, at last, be able to tackle it?

Presentations

Ehrenthal, J. (2011). Mut zur Lücke: Den Wunsch nach vollen Regalen mit Kundenintelligenz erfüllen (Don’t fear your gaps: using customer insights to improve shelf replenishment): Absatzorientierte Warenverfügbarkeit im Lebensmitteleinzelhandel. Presented at 9. Hamburger Logistiktage, Hamburg, Germany.

Ehrenthal, J., & Hofstetter, J. S. (2010). Availability counts!. Presented at vnl, Bregenz, Austria.

Ehrenthal, J., & Keller, T. (2009). Consumer centricity: Efficient on-shelf availability in wholesale retailing. Presented at 2. St.Galler AdOSA-Fachtagung: Kundenzufriedenheit und Cost-Cutting?, Cologne, Germany.

Ehrenthal, J., & Keller, T. (2009). Uncompromised customer orientation: Synchronizing ordering, delivery and instore-logistics to increase on-shelf availability in wholesale retailing. Presented at 10th ECR-Day (10. ECR-Tag), Dresden, Germany.

Ruptura no Varejo: Encontrando uma solucao (Retail Out-of-Stocks: Finding a Solution). Presented at 41st ABRAS convention, Sao Paulo, Brazil, September 27, 2007. (PPT download available here)

Retail Out-of-Stocks: A World-Wide Examination of Extent, Causes, and Responses (and some solutions). Presentation to the Retail Technologies for Latin America conference, Mexico City, Mexico, May 24, 2007. (das Ding gibt es auf Toms UCCS seite, bitte als Link hinterlegen)

Solving the Out-of-Stock Dilemma: A Global Perspective. Presentation at Food Marketing Institute, Chicago, May 6, 2007.

Solutions to Prevent Out-of-Stocks. Presentation to G.O.L.D. Users Association Meeting, Nice, France, March 8, 2007.

5 Key Issues of Out-of-Stocks Research and Practice: Making Out-of-Stocks a Priority for the FMCG Industry, ECR Academic Symposium, Stockholm, Sweden, September 15, 2006.

Out-of-Stocks Research: Improving Methods at the Self. Presented at National Association of Chain Drug Stores Marketplace, San Diego, June 27, 2006.

Increase On-shelf Availability by Reducing Out-of-Stocks. Presented at Retail Systems / VICS Collaborative Commerce 2005 Conference, Chicago, May 24, 2006.

Increase On-shelf Availability by Reducing Out-of-Stocks. Presented at Retail Systems / VICS Collaborative Commerce 2005 Conference, Chicago, May 26, 2005; also presented at National Association of Chain Drug Stores, Northbrook, Illinois, June 15, 2005.

Understanding Retail Out-of Stocks: Direction for improving On-Shelf-Availability. Video Conference presentation to Nordic Retail College of Stockholm University, Colorado Springs, Colorado and Stockholm, Sweden, December 22, 2004.

Retail Out of Stocks: An Examination of Causes and Consumer Responses. Presentation to the Food Marketing Institute Annual Convention, Chicago, Ill, May 2, 2004

Finding Solutions to the Challenges of Out of Stocks, Presented at Logicon Conference, Amsterdam, Netherlands, February 23, 2004.

Rising to the Challenge of Out of Stocks. Presented at the Worldwide Retail Exchange “We Collaborate Americas” Conference, Washington D.C., January 19, 2004.

Retail Out-of-Stocks: A World-Wide Examination of Extent, Causes, and Responses. Presented at the 2003 American Marketing Association Faculty Consortium on Supply and Value Chain Management, Ft. Worth, Texas, November 2003

Rise to the Challenge of Out of Stocks. Closing keynote address at Retail Systems / VICS Collaborative Commerce 2003 Conference, Chicago, June 2003.

Retail Out of Stocks: A Worldwide Examination of Causes, Rates, and Consumer Responses. Presented at 9th Recent Advances European Institute of Retailing and Services Studies, Heidelberg, Germany, August 2002.

Retail Out of Stocks and Retailer-Manufacturer Relationship Practices. Presented at 6th Research Conference on Relationship Marketing and CRM, Georgia State University/AMA/ICRM, June 2002.