What can retailers do to create a strong e-cigs offering?
blu UK works with retailers and can offer strong category advice, knowledge and know-how of the market trends and consumer preferences (based on extensive research), in order to strengthen retailers’ ecig offering. blu UK is committed to providing a high level of support to retailers, helping customers to understand this evolving category and maximise their sales. As a company we pride ourselves on having the best knowledge of the market and understanding of consumer preferences, and we want to share this to benefit with retailers and ultimately their shoppers.
Examples of where blu UK can help retailers create a strong ecig offering are with merchandising and PoS solutions. blu UK provides these for every channel (grocery, symbol and independents, wholesale and cash & carry). The eye-catching display kits include free standing units for the till point, door stickers, window posters and wobblers. The range of PoS, which highlights the award-winning taste of blu e-cigarettes, has been designed to promote the entire product range including flavours such as Classic Tobacco, Menthol and bluBERRY, with each product suited to a shopper’s individual requirements. Using the blu PoS will drive visibility of e-cigarettes in-store and encourage consumers to try the taste of blu e-cigarettes. By providing such a high level of support, blu UK works with retailers to attract new and loyal customers and maximise sales.
Which type of products should be stocked when space is at a minimum?
To give consumers and shoppers maximum understanding of the market and to offer them the best level of choice, retailers should stock all formats (cig-a-likes for new users and e-liquids along with tank style Pro Kits for advanced users) and have a choice of more than one brand. If retailers can’t stock the entire range, blu UK recommends stocking at least one type of ‘cig-a-like’ e-cigarette and one larger ‘tank’ style such as the Pro Kit and a couple of options for e-liquid refills for each.
blu UK recommends that e-cigs should be ranged near traditional tobacco products and accessories. This makes it simple for shoppers to locate them because e-cig consumers are adult smokers, who are going to be looking at the tobacco gantry. Sitting the display on the counter top is the best location as it is near the tobacco gantry but close at hand and noticeable for adult smokers considering an alternative. Also, because the e-cig products have a relatively high price point in a convenience store, it is wise to limit display stock by topping-up the display with reserves from the stock room, or under the counter.
What are the current trends in e-cigs?
blu UK is encouraging retailers that sell tobacco cigarettes to sell e-cigarettes. The category is continuing to grow quickly as adult smokers explore alternatives to traditional tobacco products, and the margins are great. What’s more, the shutters have gone down on cigarette gantries so e-cigarettes are going to be the most obvious and visible option to adult smokers. Another general trend highlights that consumers, once they have made the switch to e-cigarettes, prefer refillable e-liquid tanks with rechargeable batteries which sees them moving away from the original disposable e-cigarette options. The category is certainly growing, but if shoppers are not all fully informed about e-cigarettes, blu UK works with its retailers to ensure staff are educated on the blu™ product to make the most of the opportunity. We want our retailers to be at the forefront of this exciting market by being the ones to be able to offer their shoppers information and consultation when they are choosing e-cigarettes ensuring they have products that will match their taste preference.
How can they monitor sales and ensure they maintain a responsible reputation?
blu UK strongly believes in marketing and advertising e-cigarettes responsibly to adult smokers, who we hope will consider blu electronic cigarettes as an alternative to conventional cigarettes and we are sure this is what retailers considering stocking e-cigarettes also believe. We ask that retailers stocking blu products ID shoppers purchasing e-cigarettes to ensure that they are over 18. Further to this, our own standards require that, for example, we undertake no TV advertising before 9pm, position no billboards within 150m of schools, and place no advertising in any printed publication unless at least 85% of readers are over the age of 18. When the new Advertising Standards Authority rules came in regarding e-cigarettes we were proud to be able to say that our own self-imposed standards meant we were already fully compliant with the new regulations. By adopting this approach we can assure our retailers that they are stocking a brand which is responsible and fully compliant with current legislation.
Tel: 0800 0149 355