Improving Selling Space Productivity

The cost of selling space, or occupancy cost, is a major cost factor in retailing, second only to people costs in most companies.  Optimizing space productivity is a major contribution to company profitability.  In times like this, it is important to use every square foot or square metre as productively as possible. 

Who's Involved

The job roles and functions that make contributions to improving space productivity include: 

  • A headquarters space management team which is most often part of Store Operations. Their mission is to optimise selling space deployment by department or category. 
  • A visual merchandising team that manages fixture level presentation, and in category management may develop planograms and define replenishment parameters to help maximize on shelf availability to shoppers. 
  • Buyers who select products and create assortments. 
  • Merchandisers who determine inventory needs to support sales plans and determine or heavily influence the space needed to display the inventory effectively. 
  • E-Commerce people who leverage relevant store best practices to improve online productivity. 
  • Marketing people who create window plans, display signage and marketing campaigns to promote traffic, and who do analyses of CRM databases to create meaningful customer segments and the share each segment takes in individual stores or store groups. 
  • Marketing, E-Commerce, and Store Operations people who plan and implement omni-channel retail operations combining the strengths of each channel. 

All these people need to be alert to the business improvement potential of an optimized space productivity business, leveraging the power and contribution of each channel. 

Martec Solution

We provide a complete suite of e-learning training, coupled with a series of supporting services to upskill your people in selling space management, visual merchandising, aspects of store design and applying some of the techniques that work in stores to improve online performance. 

Our Space Management and Merchandise Presentation Suite includes 6 modules: 

  • Introduction to Space Management 
  • Selling Space Planning and Management 
  • Store Approach, Entrance and Windows 
  • Product Positioning and Signage 
  • Merchandise Presentation and Offering Inspiration 
  • Online Merchandising. 

Modules 1 and 2 currently exists as e-learning similar in style to Martec’s other e-learning programs.  The content for the other 4 modues is available now in our Retail and Consumer Goods Industry WIKI and Performance Support System. E-Learning versions will be rolled out over the next several months.  Anyone licencing a class automatically gets access to the WIKI version.

Space Management and Merchandise Presentation Suite Target Customers

Module 1 Introduction to Space Management
  Primary Target Audience Secondary Audience Comments
spvm-introduction-to-space-management-300px-x-300px-72dpi New hires to retailing in various roles and consumer goods companies’ category management teams  Companies providing related services to retailers, e.g. consumer goods manufacturers, category management teams and planogram software providers.  Basic concepts in selling space management, store layout and allocation of space to departments/ categories. 
Module 2 Selling Space Planning and Management
  Primary Target Audience Secondary Audience Comments
spvm-selling-space-planning--management-300px-x-300px-72dpi HQ based space management teams, Buyers, Merchandisers Area Managers, Regional Directors/VPs, Marketing, IT, Finance,  Addresses the strategic allocation of space by merchandise department or category.  It includes detailed process descriptions, key calculations and the use of key metrics. 
Module 3 Store Approach, Entrance and Windows
  Primary Target Audience Secondary Audience Comments

Store Managers, Area Managers

Real Estate Managers, Marketing  Addresses the approaches to the store, external store areas like parking and gardening space, the entrance and window usage including external signage. 
Module 4 Product Positioning & Signage
  Primary Target Audience Secondary Audience Comments
spvm-product-positioning--signage-300px-x-300px-72dpi Visual Merchandisers, Store Managers and Deputies  Marketing, B&M team Product placing for regular product, impulse items, promotional products, planograms, promotional signage, use of fixtures.
Module 5 Merchandise Presentation & Offering Inspiration
  Primary Target Audience Secondary Audience Comments
spvm-merch-presentation--offering-inspiration-300px-x-300px-72dpi Visual Merchandisers, Store Managers and Deputies, Planogrammers  Wider Store Operations people, Marketing How to make the best visual impact on shoppers and the importance of providing customers with inspiration, together with ideas from other companies.
Module 6 Online Merchandising
  Primary Target Audience Secondary Audience Comments
spvm-online-merchandising-300px-x-300px-72dpi E-Commerce, Marketing  Store Managers and those involved in Omni-Channel, B&M  How to trade an online store using many of the skills and disciplines used in physical stores. 

You can download our Space Management Fact Sheet and get the full details of each module including objectives, detailed scope, and content. 

Our e-learning classes include: 

  • Downloadable resources to support revision of key content and job aids to support day to day performance 
  • Exercises to practice skills 
  • A mastery test to show understanding and application of skills. 
  • A digital badge for those achieving a 70% pass mark on the mastery test.  The badge can be posted on social media to show learner achievement and increase motivation to master the program. 
  • An action planning spreadsheet, which can be downloaded at the start of training and capture the learner’s ideas on how they can improve space productivity.  This will form a start point for improvement implementation planning once classes are completed and can be monitored by company management. 

Tangible Benefits


With in-company management support and optional support from Martec, this training will lead to significant improvement in company performance.  The following metrics should show improvement: 

  • Sales per square foot 
  • Achieved gross margin per square foot 
  • Increased conversion rates 
  • Increased average transaction units and value 
  • More appropriate inventory density 
  • Inventory investment changes due to omni-channel impacts 
  • Increase in online sales per page. 

Access to Classes


E-Learning access is provided through our Learning Management System at no extra charge, and we provide complementary manager access so that a responsible manager can monitor learning progress and achievement.

For very large companies with their own LMS, we can install our classes in house subject to the fact that their LMS conforms to normal industry standards. 



The shop pages on our web site show the cost of each class for a single learner. Discounts are available for more than 10 learners and annual licence fees can be arranged.  More information is available on request. 

Optional Services


  • A study to estimate the return on investment achievable 
  • Live instructor coaching webinars to help learners further develop their skills in key areas 
  • Consulting support during the implementation 
  • Monitoring and tuning the benefits achievement.