Sustainable Supply Chain

Transforming Retail: From Shelves to Screens with Gabe Wight

September 22, 2023 Tom Raftery / Gabe Wight Season 1 Episode 351
Sustainable Supply Chain
Transforming Retail: From Shelves to Screens with Gabe Wight
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Show Notes Transcript

🎙️Hey everyone, in this today's episode of the Digital Supply Chain, we dive deep into the future of retail with Gabe Wight, General Manager at 1WorldSync. 🛒

🤔Ever wondered how the pandemic has dramatically reshaped the retail landscape? Gabe walks us through the seismic shifts and why "digitising the retail experience" is more than just a buzzword. Trust me; it's a reality we all have to face.

🛍️First on the agenda: data accuracy. Gabe argues that the data game needs to step up for us to understand what's going on the shelves—real-time and virtually. We explore why "false out-of-stocks" are not just a nuisance but a systemic problem that needs fixing.

🎯Next up, the issue of personalisation. Retailers, pay attention! Gabe believes it's high time we moved from just looking at customer's "baskets" to understanding their life and usage patterns. 📊

🚚Ah, the 'Last Mile.' Could there be a more complicated topic? But fret not; Gabe shares some wisdom on why solving this might mean thinking differently about Click and Collect, home deliveries, and more.

🏭The episode also dives into the symbiotic relationship between brand manufacturers and retailers. Is it time to shake up traditional supply chains? You'll want to hear what Gabe has to say about this.

📌Lastly, Gabe stresses the crucial role of retail fundamentals in e-commerce. Just because you’re online doesn’t mean you can forget the basics! It’s back to Retail 101 for all of us. 📚

📧Intrigued? You can reach out to Gabe at gwhite@oneworldsync.com or visit 1WorldSync for more info.

🎧So grab your headphones, tune in (or watch the episode on YouTube), and let's embark on this insightful journey to the future of retail. You'll walk away with tips, tricks, and strategies you can implement right now! 👇

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Gabe White:

It's, an inevitability that brick and mortar in those categories that haven't traditionally been, e-commerce centric become more and more so. We've seen that, you know, as you mentioned, COVID, but, and Covid certainly accelerated, but the growth curve was, was well underway of course before Covid, and then Covid just threw a little more gasoline on that, on that fire.

Tom Raftery:

Good morning, good afternoon, or good evening, wherever you are in the world. This is the Digital Supply Chain Podcast, the number one podcast focusing on the digitization of supply chain, and I'm your host, Tom Raftery. Hi, everyone. Welcome to episode 351 of the Digital Supply Chain podcast. My name is Tom Raftery, and I'm excited to be here with you today, sharing the latest insights and trends in supply chain. Before we kick off today's show, I want to take a moment to express my gratitude to all of our amazing supporters. Your support has been instrumental podcast going, and I'm really grateful to each and every one of you. If you're not already a supporter, I'd like to encourage you to consider joining our community of like minded individuals who are passionate about supply chain. Supporting the podcast is easy and affordable with options starting as low as just three euros or dollars a month. That's less than the cost of a cup of coffee and your support will make a huge difference in keeping this show going strong. To become a supporter, simply click on the support link in the show notes of this or any episode, or visit tinyurl. com slash dscpod. Now, without further ado, I'd like to introduce my special guest today, Gabe. Gabe, welcome to the podcast. Would you like to introduce yourself?

Gabe White:

Sure Tom, thanks for having me. Gabe White reside in Northwest Arkansas in the USA and if you are familiar with geography in the USA, there's a, you'll, you'll hear me talk some about Walmart. I, I live kind of in the back door of Walmart's home office and I've been in food, drug, club mass. Some specialty retail for now, gosh, 25 plus years and glad to be joining you.

Tom Raftery:

Okay. And who are you working with or for Gabe?

Gabe White:

Sure. I work for One World Sync today. And One World Sync is really the world leader in product content orchestration. So if you're a brand manufacturer then all of your product, content, title, description, photos, videos, et cetera, et cetera, you would house in One World Sync and One World Sync would connect that content to retailers.

Tom Raftery:

Okay, cool. Now, As you brought it up Walmart and Target recently released their earnings. Do you wanna tell me a little bit about your thoughts on those? I.

Gabe White:

Sure. I think a couple of thoughts. One, it was really interesting, you know, in, in the world of retail, of course, we all live and die by comp store sales. And comp store sales for those who may not know that those are the, the sales growth or decline at like stores or the same stores year over year. And so any new store is not factored into that. Or of course, store closures aren't, aren't factored in. And Target had a decline in com store sales. A pretty sizable decline, a very sizable decline, especially when one factors in inflation and Walmart had a very sizable increase. And Targets was over 5% decline in com, store sales and really in retail, that's a, that's a, that's a big number uh, down and Walmart had over 6% increase another big number. So they both had big numbers but in opposite directions. And I think there were a couple of things underlining there that are interesting for all of us. One is there's a little bit of a a, a fulfilled prophecy of what the product is. So in, in, as inflation goes up, Target tends to be a little bit more you know, clothing and accessories and that kind of a thing. Non, non-essentials. And therefore you could see some decline there as, as inflation and economic pressure hits the, the consumer. And Walmart tends to be a little more staples food their mix tends to be more toward food and the things that you just have to have, you have to, you have to eat. So there's a little bit of that. Additionally, I think uh, you know, target has, has made a couple of they, they had a, a, a large backlash in the US around some of their uh, marketing activity in, in June. And they, they referenced that a few times in the in, in their earnings call, which was interesting. And so, you know, there, there are some social issues happening in the US that haven't, haven't quite sorted out, if you will. And I think they've been wrapped up in some of that, that that certainly has to have some effect in their earnings. Both both retailers of course talked a lot about their digital, their e-commerce and how e-commerce is is such a driving force, and that that has been an area that I've been associated with for a number of years now in, in terms of how e-commerce it fits into a traditional brick and mortar retail uh, into that space. those retailers that just have always been stores and foot traffic. And how now does e-comm play into that and, and really as a growth engine for them?

Tom Raftery:

Sure, and I mean, we've seen this huge transition to e-commerce as you referenced there, particularly in the last three, four years since covid hit and people were in lockdown and they had no choice essentially. And I mean that, I think that caught a lot of retailers off guard, but they're starting to ramp up their efforts now. How are they doing?

Gabe White:

Yeah. Oh, I think, I think every good economist should start an answer. Not that I'm an economist, but every good economist should start an answer with, it depends. Which gives a a ton of flexibility for uh, you know, where the rest of that goes. Some are doing quite the e-commerce offering and these brick, brick and mortar retailers is, is doing quite well, especially in Walmart. I think Target reference and their earning call that they're the highest customer satisfaction is actually in their Click and Collect. That's their, of, of all the services Target has, their highest customer satisfaction is in Click and Collect. So there's something that's going on well there and I think, you know, at, at its essence, perhaps I should say, none of us really want to shop for our needs. We want to shop for our wants. I happen to enjoy trout fishing and so I, I like to go shopping for trout, fishing gear. And you know, if, if I were into cars, I would want to go shopping for cars and test drive. But that gallon of milk, there's nothing exciting about pulling into a parking lot, walking the hundred meters into the store, walking the, what seems like 500 meters back to the milk case, getting that gallon of milk and going through it. There's nothing fulfilling about that that experience. And I think so fundamentally e-commerce, because it takes so much of that friction out and allows us to fulfill our needs and spend more time on our wants, I think that it's, it's an a, an an inevitability that that the brick and mortar in those categories that haven't traditionally been, e-commerce centric become more and more so. Um, And we've seen that, you know, as you mentioned, COVID, but, but the, and Covid certainly accelerated, but the growth curve was, was well underway of course before Covid, and then Covid just threw a little more gasoline on that, on that fire.

Tom Raftery:

Yeah, indeed. And in fact, just before we hit record here, my groceries were delivered about 15 minutes ago. It's, I, it's something I've been doing for years long before Covid uh, because I could, because to your point, I hate going to the grocery store. You know, it's a 15 minute drive there. It's 45 minute going up and down the aisles, five, 10 minutes at the checkout, 15 minute drive home, or I can fire up a browser, check my last three weeks shopping lists. Grab what I need from those. Throw in one or two more things, hit go. And then the following day, at whatever time a van shows up with everything I ordered,

Gabe White:

You know, Tom, degree we've become comfortable with other, with new categories. So at, at the beginning of e-commerce and, and of course when Amazon launched, it was books And well book is a very known entity. If, if I am going to buy a copy of Moby Dick, I know what I'm, basically what I'm getting, I'm getting Moby Dick. And it is a very known entity. And then e-commerce kind of grew from that to to, to brands that are well known and the models within the brands that are well known. And the question was, of course, you know, though, there's a profitability question around grocery, but there's also a, a question around when we get out of the dry grocery, the brands like, you know, Frosted Flakes or the, the, the well-known household brands even into like Milk, the expiration date comes into it. Am I gonna get the one that gallon of milk that expires tomorrow?

Tom Raftery:

the back of the shelf,

Gabe White:

Right, exactly. And then so that, then you kind of sort through that and you try it a couple times, it works out pretty well and it's like, okay, can I really trust this store to pick out my produce or my meat and all? And, and we're kind of learning that, you know what, the, the trade off is not that great. The, the, though the store associate may not pick the exact watermelon we would've picked, we really don't know what we're missing.'cause we weren't there to, to stand alongside 'em. And at the end of the day, it was at my door.

Tom Raftery:

Hmm.

Gabe White:

That's not a bad

Tom Raftery:

No, it, it's pretty good. How does that impact, for example, inventory though? Because when people went shopping to the shops, I know I, I lived in Ireland. I used to go to Tesco there and it would be on a Saturday, which I hated 'cause it led into my Saturday. But then they opened on Sundays. They started opening on Sundays and that was great.'cause you know, I wasn't doing much on a Sunday, so I could go to Tesco on the Sunday, which meant they had to have all their inventory levels ready for that weekend boom. And then during the week, maybe they, but now I order on a Monday to get delivery on a Tuesday because the fresh fish comes in on Monday. So if I order Monday, I get the fresh fish that came in just the day before, rather than if I order on Monday or Sunday for delivery on Monday, I may not get the fresh fish. So, you know, . . How so? Now I, and I'm sure I'm not the only one who's changed from ordering at the, the, the weekend and going to the shops, to, to ordering midweek for whatever reasons, whatever bizarre reasons that I have, for example, , you know, so how's that impacting inventory? I,

Gabe White:

yeah, and, and, and you may be more reliably at home during the week because you're of, of the nature of your work versus on the weekend, you don't wanna have to be, you know, have an appointment on the weekend, take that, that, that, that delivery. But there are sometimes more reliable or predictable times when you be at home. From an inventory perspective, it's it's honestly been really difficult because there are, you know, a lot of of shoppers build their list and so let's, let's go back to your fresh fish or just, you know, fresh fish in general. If you put that in your cart on Sunday, then the question is, when are you actually gonna transact that order? Will there be inventory when you transact that order? But it isn't just when you transact that order. When will someone, when, when will that order get batched down to the store level? When will someone be able to walk out to the shelf to get that that, that wonderful filet and put it in the basket? To then, you know, so there, there are the, the nature of e-commerce in let's just stay at grocery for just a little bit. It's changed the, the, the store patterns. We used to know exactly the foot patterns in store very, very, very well. And we we always traditionally stock shelves to, you know, a fairly busy Saturday. If on a pretty busy Saturday we're gonna sell eight units, we might have a shelf holding power of 12 units. And or something like that. And so now, you know, the day patterns have changed. The predictability of, of those day patterns has definitely changed. And we're still trying to figure out like, how do, how do we really, how do we really think about this? So a lot of times what we find is that, when you look in a a, the retailer reporting systems, you might see that there's a, you have an on-hand qual quantity of your item. You may have four on-hand units. There are four units. If you walked into the store right this second, there are four units sitting on the shelf. And then you go online at that store and it's, it's listed as out of stock.

Tom Raftery:

Yeah.

Gabe White:

the retailers having to figure out, okay, is four, I have four units on hand, is that enough so that when Tom puts this fish, in his cart and transacts and, you know, the batching, all the things we talked about, do we think there'll be one on the shelf by the time someone gets over there to to, to pull it off the shelf? And, and you know what? We're not sure. So we're gonna list it as outta stock. And so it really has become a an area where new algorithms have had, had to be created and it, and it isn't sorted out yet. And we still, we, we in our industry would consider those like a false out of stock where the online's listed as outta stock, but in stores in stock.

Tom Raftery:

Right.

Gabe White:

And so we would consider that a false outta stock. And we see a, a, a pretty high incidence rate of those false outta stocks, especially when you get below that, you know, you think about like what your velocity is your average daily velocity when you start to get below you know, one or two average daily, you know, sales quantities. Then see a lot of those false outta stocks.

Tom Raftery:

And this is a naive question from my point of view, I guess, but are shops really sending staff around to the shelves, pulling items off the shelves for online orders? Or do they not have a, an online section in the warehouse, you know, to, to avoid having to have staff going around with trolleys around the shop. I.

Gabe White:

Tom, I'm gonna start this with a, a, a a a little bit of a story. I worked in a Walmart store in high school and in early college. I'm old enough, whereas when Walmart was really ramping up their Supercenter expansion back in the early nineties and I remember we, we grew up in a little town that was fairly close to the Walmart home office. We got a lot of executive visits, and the executives, about half of'em would come through and say, this grocery idea is brilliant. We're gonna bring in new shoppers. We've got more categories, all the, and about half of 'em come in and say, this is the dumbest idea. There's no margin in grocery, there's spoilage. We don't know how to do it. Well, fast forward about 10 years and all of Walmart and Wall Street was saying if Walmart could just get their grocery shoppers to cross the aisle into general merchandise, they'd really have

Tom Raftery:

Okay,

Gabe White:

Fast forward another 10 years. Walmart launches this, Click and Collect their Click and Collect offering and about. They tested and about half the execs say, this is amazing. We're really into e-comm. We're gonna leverage the one asset we have, which is, you know, stores across not just the US but across the globe. And and about half the execs would say, this is such a dumb idea. Um, We're gonna pay associates to do what a shopper's already doing. There's already no margin. You know, nobody's gonna want, everyone wants to go in and squeeze their tomatoes and, and, and what we've found is that the, the, brick and mortar retail, of course, wasn't set up in the store in the way the store functions logistically, just inside that box wasn't set up for e-commerce. So today many, many, many times, it is someone walking from the back room with a cart shopping the aisles and pulling the aisles. Now, the newer stores are set up a little differently, and so the items bananas back to milk. But the items that, you know, the, the, the high velocity items will be kept in the back room, which opens up a whole new arena for, you know, supply chain issues of that allocation, that case of product comes in, how much gets allocated in the back room? How much it gets allocated? The, the, the, the front of the house. When is it out of stock? Is, do we, is it outta stock at the front of the house but in stock in the back of the house? Or vice versa, if it's outta stock in the back of the house. Does, do they actually walk out the front of the house and get it? There's a, there are a lot of um, they're in that we haven't solved, but the most of the time in the esp in the states for sure. Most of the time it's still fulfill from the store floor. And there's so much innovation there, right? There are, there are dark stores meaning only pick and pull warehouses that are being stood up at a fairly rapid rate by retailers where, you know, bigger metropolitan areas will just fulfill out of that that warehouse. But it is still, I mean, we are, as, as you know, we're so early in this it, this is such a new phenomenon. Really e-commerce in total, but certainly e-commerce for grocery consumables we're so early in this that I don't, anyone who says they haven't figured out, I'd like to chat with them for a little bit and I'd be a little bit beware of the, those who say they have it figured out.

Tom Raftery:

And why is Click and Collect so popular? I mean,

Gabe White:

Yeah.

Tom Raftery:

the store that I use, they have Click and Collect as well. I know that if I put in an order today, I can.

Gabe White:

Yep.

Tom Raftery:

use the click and collect option and collect it in one or two hours time. Whereas if I want it delivered, I might have to wait six or eight hours, you know. But the only time I would for me that I would use click Collect is if I needed something urgently, or there wasn't a delivery window available when I wanted it. But it, for me, the click, Click and Collect means, you know, about a half hour drive, 15 there, 15 back, and maybe five minutes waiting there and then loading the car, whereas they deliver to the home. It shows up at home.

Gabe White:

Right, right, right. Well, I think there are it, it really comes down a lot of times to, you know what, what is your what is the rhythm and pattern of your life for many, many shoppers. And so for many that that work maybe a, you know, regular nine to five job, they know

Tom Raftery:

Thanks,

Gabe White:

those who are gainfully employed, right? So, yeah. But they, you know, they know I'm gonna drive past that store every day at five

Tom Raftery:

Okay.

Gabe White:

every day. Meanwhile, I, I could. Have it delivered, but then I have a a window of time that I have to be at home and it's just convenient for me to drive past that store and that, that Click and Collect is very reliable. The other thing about click and Collect that I think that retailers have a they have not figured out yet but is a reason to use Click and Click is impulse.

Tom Raftery:

Hmm.

Gabe White:

There was some research, it's been probably 20 years ago now but the average shopper in the US walked into a grocery store with nine items on their list and left with 17. So there's some inspiration or some, oh, look at that, that happens in the store. And with e-commerce that doesn't happen as much in grocery now. Amazon has always done a very good job of impulse with the shoppers who bought, also bought. So there are those attachment opportunities. But you still look at impulse for grocery retailers and it, it under indexes pretty dramatically for for either either delivery or Click and Collect. And so, I think that Click and Collect as retailers, I think target's a good example. They now uh, have where you can order a Starbucks and they're still.

Tom Raftery:

Ah,

Gabe White:

Fulfilling, Click and Collect and under four minutes you pull in the parking lot under four minutes. You order a Starbucks no matter what is a tall, skinny, whatever you want. And they will have it in your, in your, the, the, the trunk of your car. Or as you might say, the boot of your car and the Starbucks in your hand and under four minutes. That's, that's that's pretty good. I think that impulse. If, if retailers can figure out that impulse where you really can't add the, kind of, forget me, not items. And I, I think that's gonna be a, a big driver, Click and Click, but click and click versus at home delivery. So much of that has to do with the rhythm of, of life and adoption curve,

Tom Raftery:

Yeah.

Gabe White:

you know? And so, it just is, is it's been, it's been out there a little bit longer and I think there're all, there's an inevitability around the adoption curve as

Tom Raftery:

sure. That makes sense. I gotta say to your point recently, the store that I use for purchases, what they've done it's a new thing they've rolled out, is when you go to check out, they throw up a list of things that you usually order that's not in this week's order, and they say, We noticed that you often buy this, this, this, this, this, this, and this. And they're not in your basket this week. If you'd like to add any of those, just click here and you just, you click on whichever one you'd forgotten and boom. And it goes. And the last three times I've placed an order. So it's live for three weeks now. Twice they were, they picked things that I'd forgotten and it was like, it'd be like, boom. Oh yeah, that's right. I need that. Boom . So

Gabe White:

right, right.

Tom Raftery:

works. It was, I was delighted.

Gabe White:

Tom, it's so interesting. The lifetime value of an e-comm shopper for a brand is such a different proposition than the lifetime value of a shopper when they walk in store. And for, for a couple of reasons. One is most, many, many people start their shopping list with what they bought last time. And if you didn't buy it last time, you're, you're not in that consideration set. So, and, and it's very, very uh, difficult to get a brown brand switch. If that item worked for you last time, why not? Uh, and then secondly is when that data comes around of, you know, Tom, typically he forgot his favorite fish. And it is, it, it, it remind you that lifetime value is so important. That's one of the other reasons why the having the supply chain, the inventory right, is substitutions or one of the main tactics when you think about when, where, and how do we pick up a, a, a new shopper to, to get that lifetime value cycle going. It's, it's either that shopper has a life stage change is trying something new or there's a substitution, they liked it. And so for me, I'm kind of out of the zone of I'm already married, that life change is gone. I've already gone to college. That life change is gone. I've already had kids that life change is gone. I'm not an empty mess nester. There will be more life changes for me.

Tom Raftery:

Yeah.

Gabe White:

It really comes down, there are very few opportunities to uh, really intercept that e-comm shopper. You can't put up the big flashy display with lights like you can in the store.

Tom Raftery:

are

Gabe White:

It's hard to

Tom Raftery:

people handing out samples? Yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Gabe White:

Yeah. Right, right, right. And so that and I think the, the, the running out of stock is such a risk. It's such a risk. And, and I don't think that we as a, as a industry, We don't have the data to back up how big of a risk it is, but just from, you know, personal experience, your experience, other, we all know that substitution it does tend to work. Hey, this was this, it was substitute with a store brand. It was actually, it was, it was good. I'll just do that again. And some retailers are pretty savvy and when they do a substitution, they, they really work that what you bought last time list. And so what you used to buy last time. you had a, a loyalty to is now off of what you bought last time. And the substituted item is in

Tom Raftery:

Okay.

Gabe White:

well there, so there's actually more friction to stay loyal to what you used to buy that was then outta stock. That had to be substituted for much less friction to make that brand switch. And for many many items we buy that there's a, a high transferability in what you are, are willing to use for that particular utility, whatever that that is you're looking for. And so that's a, that's a big issue. And, and running outta stock it's a, it's a risk. It's a big, big risk. And being in stock also is an opportunity for when other people run outta stock and you're able to be substituted for. It's really important uh, for, for brands to think through that.

Tom Raftery:

Yeah. Yeah. Because if you're in a store and you are walking down an aisle looking for a particular item that you want, and it's not there, that empty spot, the shelf is gonna be surrounded by three or four competitors who all are selling the same kind of thing.

Gabe White:

right. That's right.

Tom Raftery:

on your, on your webpage that you're looking at, you don't have the same thing. And

Gabe White:

That's right.

Tom Raftery:

so in, in the store, I use, what they do typically is they have a checkbox which says, If it's not available, fulfill this with the same brand but a different size or

Gabe White:

Yep.

Tom Raftery:

Fulfill it with another brand of the same size, and you choose one or the other as a universal preference for your entire list. And then you can, you can individualize one by one if you want. So.

Gabe White:

Yep.

Tom Raftery:

Even with that, it, it, it's, you know, you're, you're more likely to go with the brand that you're familiar with rather than switching. So what they do as well in, in the story is what they do as well is from time to time, they'll send you an internet gift, so it'll be something that you've never purchased before so that you can try it out, which, you know,

Gabe White:

Right. Sampling, right?

Tom Raftery:

Sometimes it works, sometimes not so much.

Gabe White:

Right, right. I think we're all, of course trying to figure out how to, how do we, how do you actually generate new demand? You know, it used to be that you launch a new item, and of course you have your, your advertising and marketing happening, but then you also have these big, beautiful displays when you walk in the store. Now we're not walking the store as much, so how do you really get that adoption started and, and, and, and begin to pick up those new customers? And sampling used to be, you know, especially in food, such a important piece of that. Little more difficult with e-commerce. Yeah. We don't have all the tools yet. Yeah.

Tom Raftery:

Where's it going from here? Gabe, what do you think? What's, what's coming down the line next?

Gabe White:

Well, I think there, there are a couple of things that are really, really important. I think one is retailers have to figure out the, the, the right logistics around how to drive cost outta the system. There are just as too much cost in the system right now. We've seen cost go down quite a bit, but the cost really goes all the way. You know, as, as retailers use stores for the supply, the last warehouse in the supply chain effectively, then you know that that store is laid out. The, the footprint of that store is very much for shoppers. I, I, I can promise you, there's no retailer that likes that the bananas and milk that are always in the ba basket together. All right. Opposite ends of the store. For shoppers, it's wonderful. They have to navigate the entire store and pick up those other items. For someone picking, it's terrible. It's, it's so inefficient. And so, we have to figure out a better way to pick in the store, pick the items, and a lot of that is gonna come from, you know, stores that are fully dedicated to nothing but e-commerce and or backrooms that are fully dedicated e-commerce. So interesting to me, are we as an, as an industry have made so many gains in backroom inventory optimization. A lot of the new stores don't have a backroom to be able to, you know, have an e-comm section because we've become so efficient, which is wonderful. Where do you get the space to set up that, that e-comm pick center now? It just doesn't exist. And so, but that efficiency of picking has that is, that's gotta be sorted through. And I think we're gonna see a lot more of the hybrid option perhaps in the future where, you know, there are some items that, you know, you, you're, you're, you're on a rote pattern for every, every so often. I need a new toothbrush every so often, I need more toothpaste. And we're gonna see those, you know, shipping to the home maybe and or being batched up at the store and ready for a curbside. But those are gonna have a little bit different supply chain. I think we're gonna have, have innovation supply chain that meets the, the type of usage that the shopper has and is better aligned to purchase patterns. And it probably will have a combination of some things are delivered to home, some things we pick up at the store and some things maybe get shipped to home from a centralized warehouse. That we're gonna have to get better about that, of, of taking a a Right now we handle Amazon. I'm gonna perhaps offend people. So, you know, careful with all this, but Amazon's so good at fulfilling items. They are. You go there and you buy an item, buy it now, ship it. You might buy five items a day, but those a lot of times are just individual purchases. They're not batched up together. I need this this morning, I need this this afternoon, I need this this afternoon. And they're all different. But, but so am Amazon is really, really good about thinking about items. and then you have like your, your, more grocery retailers are better, think about baskets, but they're still only good about thinking about basket for that trip. No one is really good yet that I know of about thinking here's my consumption pattern overall and how I match to that consumption pattern overall. Are interesting when I need them. Baskets are good once or twice a week, but I have a life that happens across the course of time that needs a, that has a regularity and we're not, you know, subscribe and save. You could say, kind of, you know, starts to match that a little bit, but it's, it, it still is it isn't as useful perhaps across as many as broad a range as it could be. And so I think we've gotta get much better, much better about understanding life and usage patterns and matching to those, versus matching to items or baskets. So that's one thing I'm gonna go back the, the, you know, setting up the stores a little bit differently. And then third thing is that last mile, I mean, I think we could talk last mile for what, like a whole week, week long seminar uh, and not solve it. Uh, But last mile we gotta, you know, somehow sort through how that happens. And maybe that's some of the, the, the combination of, you know, thinking a little differently around how do we use ship? How do we use Click and Collect? How do we use to home delivery? Um, But we've gotta figure that out as well. But there, there's, this is, we are in such an infancy which is pretty

Tom Raftery:

exactly, exactly.

Gabe White:

Yeah. I think the, the, the brand manufacturers have a long way to go in this, in helping the retailers and and how how that supply chain really could be structured differently. Because right now, you know, the brand manufacturer, retailer supply chain relationship tends to be, I send a pallet or a truckload or a case to this warehouse, the retailer picks it up and, and, and goes from there. But that may not be the way that we think about it in the, in the future. It may that there's a, you know, the retailer is, you may be fulfilling the order on the retailer, but they really are doing a better job of, of, of tagging the brand manufacturer and maybe some different op opportunities for batching and bundling from the brand manufacturing directly to the consumer or, to, to, you know, new types of, of fulfillment centers, which we're seeing quite a few of already. I just don't think we have it, you know, we're just not, we just don't have it figured out, you know, there, there, the, the, the entire system's too inefficient. And we still have a lot of, you know, like the false out stocks.

Tom Raftery:

Cool, cool, cool. Great. Gabe, that's been really interesting. We're coming towards the end of the podcast now. Is there any question I haven't asked that you wish I had or any aspect of this we haven't touched on that you think it's important for people to be aware of?

Gabe White:

I do think there's one aspect that is that, that that's really important and it is that, and it goes down to we, we have, we have staffed people to call on retailers, brick and mortar retailers that know the brick and mortar side of the business. And that's really important. And we're starting to staff e-comm. But e-comm, we tend to staff probably more around like a media expertise. How would we advertise around e-comm more design programs around E-com. What we're not doing a good job of today is, are the, the basic retail fundamentals. I'll give you an example of this. Uh, so Target has 1700 stores. Plus or minus let's say that you have an item, your fresh fish is carried in 500 of those stores. What your, the assumption is, well, my fresh fish is carried in 500 stores. Therefore it will be listed on all 500 stores on their site. That's not necessarily the case. You have, just like you would managing your brick and mortar business, you have to manage the details. You have to manage the details. Am I, does my product show up at all these stores that it's carried in? Well, the answer is probably not. Like we talked about in stock, outta stock, is it list, is it listed as in stock when actually there are units on hand? Not all the time. Is it priced? What I think it's priced? Probably not. The, the in-store price is not necessarily the e-comm price. Just going back to some of the fundamentals of retail, of how we've built the, you know, we, we all come from building the business in brick and mortar, and the same principles apply. But we can't lose sight of those principles and I think we lose sight of those principles a little bit too quickly and go straight to how do I now advertise? Not that that's not important,

Tom Raftery:

Yeah.

Gabe White:

but there are some basics that have to be covered off first.

Tom Raftery:

Cool, cool, cool. Gabe, if people would like to know more about yourself or any of the things we discussed in the podcast today, where would you have me direct them?

Gabe White:

Yeah. One World Sync. So help at One World Sync, or my email is G white, g w i g h t@oneworldsync.com.

Tom Raftery:

phenomenal. Phenomenal. Gabe, that's been fascinating. Thanks a million for coming on the podcast today.

Gabe White:

Yeah. Thank you Tom. Have a good day.

Tom Raftery:

Okay, thank you all for tuning in to this episode of the Digital Supply Chain Podcast with me, Tom Raftery. Each week, over 3, 000 supply chain professionals listen to this show. If you or your organization want to connect with this dedicated audience, consider becoming a sponsor. You can opt for exclusive episode branding where you choose our guests or a personalized 30 second mid roll ad. It's a unique opportunity to reach industry experts and influencers. For more details, hit me up on Twitter or LinkedIn or drop me an email to tomraftery at outlook. com. Together, let's shape the future of the digital supply chain. Thanks. Catch you all next time.

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