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The main stages of the analysis of product offers in price lists

1. Creation of price lists in the form of spreadsheets.

Assortment-price analysis begins with the creation of price lists of competitors/suppliers in the form of spreadsheets. This task will be greatly simplified if price lists are placed in the form of spreadsheets on the Internet sites of competing companies / suppliers. If the price lists are only in paper form, then tables can be created by scanning and recognizing them. If this is not possible, then you must manually fill in the tables in Excel or Access. For further processing, the received price lists must be brought to the table format in Excel

2. Preparation of price lists for data transfer to the analytical storage.

Preliminary preparation of price lists for data transfer to the analytical storage implies bringing all price lists to a single structure, filling in missing fields of product groups, subgroups, manufacturer's name in competitors' price lists, etc. by managers. In addition, at this stage, each item of each competitor/supplier is assigned a unique code.

3. Primary data transfer.

At this stage, in addition to data transfer, conditions are created for the subsequent comparison of data on commodity items, as well as for automated replenishment of the storage with new portions of data.

4. Comparison of data on commodity positions of competitors/suppliers.

The ultimate goal of comparison - checking the conformity of data in the price lists of competitors / suppliers is to obtain tables of correspondences between the original names used in the price lists of competitors / suppliers, and unified names, with the help of which it is necessary to designate the same products or their attributes (product groups, brands etc)

5. Replenishment of the storage with new data.

Replenishment of the storage with new portions is the addition of updated price lists of competitors / suppliers to the storage, i. e. price lists that refer to a later time period than the original data transmission period. New commodity items may appear in the price lists of competitors/suppliers, therefore, these new commodity items are initially searched for, edited and replenished in the "Products" directory, and then facts are added to the repository for all price list items.
The data transfer operation in case of modification of products and prices allows not to rewrite all data again, but only updated price lists. The storage replenishment procedure is absolutely identical to the primary data transfer described above.

The proposed technology for accumulating and analyzing data from price lists of competitors/suppliers makes it possible to significantly speed up the process of assortment-price analysis and improve its quality. This allows marketing and sales executives to quickly respond to competitive/supplier tactical pricing and assortment policy changes.
However, it is beyond the scope of this article to use these price lists in a deeper marketing analysis. The most valuable results are obtained when analyzing several types of marketing data together, for example, company sales data and company and competitor prices.
The described technology allows for a joint analysis of price lists with company sales data by placing them in a single storage. It is the joint analysis of both types of data that makes it possible to determine the level of influence of prices (own and competitors) on sales volumes, as well as to develop a pricing policy for the enterprise.
Finally, the same price and assortment data of competitors, along with data on distribution channels and promotional activities accumulated over a long period of time, can be used in strategic analysis. Such data, when applying appropriate methods and analysis tools, make it possible to determine the competitive positions of market players and the marketing strategies they use.

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