Category guide: Batteries

How important is point-of-sale and placement in this category?

AS:Approximately two-thirds of battery purchases are impulse-driven, with shoppers picking up batteries in-store because they saw attractive displays, the batteries were placed next to related products or they looked good value for money. Overall value for money is more important than price alone.

MI: Wholesalers should ensure they are merchandising their batteries fixture effectively, using point-of-sale material to drive sales.

AJ:Merchandising batteries at accessible locations in-store, such as the till point, proves successful for many retailers, as batteries can often be impulse purchases for end-users.

What innovations should wholesalers be following?

AS: We are increasingly dependent on smartphones and tablets, and as these get smarter, their battery lives gets shorter. A small selection of pre-charged, ready to use portable powerpacks can be ideal for convenience retailers, particularly those close to public transport and tourist ­areas.  

MI: Encourage cross-category purchases – stock batteries alongside toys, torches and other electrical goods that use them to prompt purchase.

AJ: Customers are now becoming even more focused on quality and durability, which has led to an increase in the demand for alkaline-based batteries. These products have a longer shelf life as well as a higher energy density than zinc heavy-duty batteries, which makes them 10 times longer-lasting.

Customer Viewpoints

Judy Anne Tyrrell, Customer services manager, David S Sales, Stourport, Worcs

“The run-up to Christmas is a very important time for our battery sales as a lot of our customers prepare for the festivity by stocking up on batteries to go in toys and gadgets given at this time. During the rest of the year, sales remain pretty stable and we sell a number of well-established brands.”

Pan Patel, R&J Newsagents, Eastbourne, East Sussex

“When I visit my local cash & carry, I normally remember to buy batteries at the last minute thanks to special offers that are on there. I rely on my wholesaler to remind me to stock up, especially before the winter holidays because that’s when I generally see a strong increase in sales.” 

Matthew Johnson, Quality Corner, Lyme Regis

“I sell a wide variety of batteries to cater for my customers and their different needs. Seeing as I work in a beach holiday destination, I do most of my business in the summer. People often come in asking for batteries for their cameras, torches, radios, fans and so on. It’s a really strong seller for me.”


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