A retail category manager is an in-store expert who deals visual merchandising, pricing management & sales of a specified group of products and whose expertise is relied on driving pricing, shelving, marketing & promotions of certain products to make them highly visible, appealing & accessible to end customers.
A successful retail manager contributes to profitability by increasing the volume of products that are sold & improving the speed of inventory and turnover and retail category managers often assist in or take charge or ordering, pricing & organizing products. They may be responsible for several categories of products or specialize in few items in category management.
To be successful, category managers must have a working knowledge of the products, consumer needs, buying practices. Its help in sales goals, and retail environment related to their merchandise category.
Key Responsibilities of a Category Manager
The retail category manager’s main goal is to optimize sales for a particular group of products. To do that, the manager must be able to maintain a productive relationship with vendors that are mutually beneficial. Create an engaging relationship with customers that are interactive and satisfying.
Responsible for every aspect of in-store retailing of their product category until those products are purchased. A retail category manager’s main responsibilities are vendor management, pricing and marketing, and planning and inventory control.
Vendor Category Management Process
Managing vendor relationships are important to the success of a retail category manager. Right selection, availability, and acquisition of products are dependent on effective communications with vendors. Productive vendor relationships directly affect the in-store pricing and marketing of the products within a category.
Pricing & Category Management Marketing
Pricing merchandise is very important as it helps with aspects of competitive positioning and the successful marketing of a product. Category managers are often responsible in setting of competitive price points. Help with the required adjustments in the price to increase sales. Also they work closely with buyers to increase sales & expand their product lines and also help in the implementation of exit strategies for not so popular products.
Planning & Control of Inventory
Retail category management managers are most responsible to manage inventory and ensure effective planning & forecasting of consumer demand and maximize profitability. Also they help to balance projected forecasts & actual sales value along with the implementation of sales plans. Apart from this financial analysis is also part of responsibilities.