In today’s competitive retail market, you simply have to manage your business more precisely, identify trends faster, accurately benchmark against peers, and work more efficiently with suppliers. But when merchandise is inconsistently and insufficiently classified, it is difficult to take a deeper dive into the data, both within categories and across the broader industry. Because of this, ICBA is taking the lead to help independent college stores re-think their product hierarchies and move toward a more “universal” way of classifying merchandise.
A consistent and formal process to classify products is essential for proper merchandise management. ICBA, as part of a multi-year collaborative effort with other industry organizations, has developed a detailed hierarchy for both General Merchandise and Course Materials. This tool is called the ICBA Universal Hierarchy (UH).