An Empirical Analysis of Assortment Similarities Across U.S. Supermarkets

Hwang, Minha; Bronnenberg, Bart J.; Thomadsen, Raphael
September 2010
Marketing Science;Sep/Oct2010, Vol. 29 Issue 5, p858
Academic Journal
his paper examines pairwise assortment similarities at U.S. supermarkets to understand how assortment composition and size are related to underlying factors that describe local store clientele, local competitive structure, and the retail outlets' characteristics. The top-selling items, which cumulatively make up 50% of sales, are sold at nearly every store, but other items are viewed as optional. We find that, within states, supermarkets owned by the same chain carry similar assortments and that the composition of their clientele and the presence of competing stores have effects on assortment similarity that are an order of magnitude smaller than ownership structure. In contrast, we find that, across states, supermarkets owned by the same chain do version their assortment. We explain this difference using extant work on the minimal efficient scale of supermarkets and on local demand effects. Furthermore, we investigate the distribution and role of regional brands. We find that regional brands are primarily distributed by small regional chains or independent stores. "Value" regional brands are primarily distributed by supermarket firms without store brands, whereas the distribution of "premium" regional brands is unrelated to the presence of store brands. We discuss our findings in the context of modeling assortment decisions and manufacturers designing distribution policies.


Related Articles

  • IN A HOLDING PATTERN.  // Retail Traffic;Apr2009, Vol. 38 Issue 3, p31 

    The article reports on the slow growth for top owners and managers of retail real estate in the U.S. The slow movement for top owners and managers testifies the miserable economic conditions as compared in 2008. More than half of the overall total is at hold by the top 10 owners at 1.14 billion...

  • Battling Brand Malpractice. Goldstein, Terri // Adweek;11/2/2009, Vol. 50 Issue 39, p17 

    The author offers opinions on the marketing of house brands by retail trade firms. Those companies are criticized for practices seen as unethical, such as designing house brand packages to resemble those of competing brand name products and giving house brands preferential displays in retail...

  • BECOME A SAVE-A-LOT OWNER!  // Hispanic Retail 360;Sep2013, Vol. 3 Issue 3, p10 

    The article offers information related to supermarket chain Save-A-Lot. It states that Save-A-Lot offers an incentive program for converted and new licensed stores. It mentions that independent retailers own and operate 70% of its locations. It adds that the support advantage of Save-a-Lot...

  • Piperlime Joins Rush: To Omni-Channel World.  // WWD: Women's Wear Daily;5/9/2012, Vol. 203 Issue 96, p1 

    The article reports that the electronic commerce firm Piperlime, owned by the retail industry company Gap Inc., will open a retail store in New York City. The store opening is considered in terms of a retail industry trend termed omni-channel marketing, in which companies operate retail stores...

  • From CVS to Costco, retailers put the screws to brands. Neff, Jack // Advertising Age;11/30/2009, Vol. 80 Issue 40, p1 

    The article reports that leading retail chain stores including Costco and the pharmacy chain CVS Caremark are continuing to remove brand name products from their stores in order to improve profit margins and lower prices. These decisions are said to reflect the increasing marketing value of...

  • Battling Brand Malpractice. Goldstein, Terri // MediaWeek;11/2/2009, Vol. 19 Issue 39, p17 

    The author offers opinions on the use of house brands by retail trade companies. The retail trade is criticized for what are seen as unfair marketing practices in which house brand products mimic the packaging and design of brand name products and when house brands are given more prominent shelf...

  • Bon-Ton Amping Up Private Label.  // WWD: Women's Wear Daily;4/28/2014, Vol. 207 Issue 85, p7 

    The article focuses on retail industry company Bon-Ton Stores Inc. The company's plan to expand its store brand product lines of clothing, house furnishings and fashion accessories in 2014 to attempt to reverse a 2013 decline of sales in Bon-Ton's department store chain is examined. Bon-Ton...

  • Is Retail Category Management Worth the Effort (and Does a Category Captain Help or Hinder)? Gooner, Richard A; Morgan, Neil A; Perreault, William D // Journal of Marketing;Sep2011, Vol. 75 Issue 5, p18 

    Category management (CM) is challenging for retailers that sell thousands of products across hundreds of categories and often lack the resources and capabilities to manage all of them intensively. Some retailers respond by picking one supplier to be a 'category captain' that manages the...

  • On what makes a significant contribution to the retailing literature Brown, James R.; Dant, Rajiv P. // Journal of Retailing;Jun2008, Vol. 84 Issue 2, p131 

    During the past 2 years, we have processed scores of submissions to the Journal of Retailing. Those that have not been published (or scheduled for publication) suffer from a variety of problems. Our experience indicates that the single most vexing difficulty with these papers is their level of...


Read the Article


Sorry, but this item is not currently available from your library.

Try another library?
Sign out of this library

Other Topics