Out of stock

What is an out of stock?

An out of stock (OOS) or stockout is defined as a complete lack of inventory on shelves of a theoretically listed SKU. OOS may be the result of a default of supply by the manufacturer or a failure of the retailer to re-stock the shelves as needed. There may be in some instances stock of the product available in the store warehouse that has not reached the shelves.

How do shoppers react to out of stock?

Out of stock can have several effects on shopper behavior:

  • The shopper buys another format, version or flavor of the product
  • The shopper buys a competitor’s product instead of the one originally planned
  • The shopper postpones the purchase or leaves the store to find the reference at another point of sale

Limiting the occurrence of OOS is key for FMCG manufacturers in order to avoid losing sales opportunities or generate frustration and unwanted behavior of the shopper.

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