Posted in Finance, Management, Research, Retail Operations

Benchmarks: Pick-a-number

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Retail is Detail is the old aphorism. But it has never been truer than now.

I wrote previously about the ‘million dollar’ question and how to identify the real problem as opposed to the symptom. IT really should have been the trillion dollar question. Consider this:

1,000 Stores


50,000 SKUs


26 Weeks


4 Measures (Sales, Inventory, Receipts, On Order)


Plan, Actual, Last Year


4 Seasons

= 1 trillion numbers


That’s a lotta numbers, you’d agree?

I cannot even imagine what a trillion numbers looks like – but there are hidden somewhere on a computer.

The downside of technology is that analysis paralysis is ever easier.

But as the owner/manager of a business (any business, but retail business in this example) the flood of data is overwhelming.

The obvious conclusion: pick the numbers you re going to focus on carefully.

My favourite is GMROI. One number that captures so much. (Check out some benchmarks here.)  

  • What do you use?
  • Why?
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2 thoughts on “Benchmarks: Pick-a-number

  1. I think you need to recalculate your numbers. I don’t think the answer of 1 trillion is correct 🙂

    1,000 x 50,000 x 26 x 4 x 3 x 4 = 62,400,000,000

    Rest of article is excellent 🙂


  2. That will teach me to copy and paste wouldn’t it ;-). Anyway I am sure you get the idea.


    -original message- Subject: [RetailSmart] Comment: “Benchmarks: Pick-a-number”


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