The Power of Data

Pet retailers have an opportunity to get more value out of their POS data.

A couple of days ago, I had a very interesting meeting with some of the folks at GfK, a global market research firm that recently released a report about the growth of grain-free pet foods in pet stores—a report that I blogged about here.

At the meeting, I was introduced to GfK's process of collecting, aggregating and reporting on POS data from the pet specialty retail channel. It was quite impressive for a number of reasons, not the least of which is the fact that, as far as I know, they are the only research firm doing this type of data mining specifically within the pet specialty retail channel.


Here's how it works: GfK partners with certain pet specialty retailers, which periodically send the company their POS data (ideally, on a weekly basis) on food sales. In exchange, GfK shares insights from the data they collect with participating retailers, free of charge. The way the company makes its money is by selling the aggregated information—not a retailer's individual data—to other interested parties, such as pet product manufacturers.


This is where the opportunity for retailers comes into play. During the meeting, GfK expressed an interest in expanding the panel of retailers from which they gather data. In particular, they are looking for smaller retailers with somewhere around two to three stores.


Retailers who interested in possibly working with GfK should contact the company's retail director, Dave Stevens, at However, it is important to note that GfK can't work with every pet store out there, so there is no guarantee that every retailer who inquires will qualify for the panel.

But don't worry, those retailers who do not qualify for the panel or simply prefer not to share their POS data still have an opportunity to benefit from GfK's unique research. Pet Business will be working closely with the market research firm in the weeks and months ahead to develop a wide range of editorial content that provides valuable insights from GfK's data, both online and in the pages of our magazine.