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Sales Scape

Bringing you the latest insights from the inside sales, customer care, and account management subject matter experts here at Salelytics.
Want to be kept up to date on the latest Sales Scape news?

Sales Scape

The ABCs of CPG, a Sales Term Glossary

by Christian Schommer
February 28, 2023
Every industry has their own language, and CPG is no different. Here is a list of CPG terminology to get you up to speed!

In business communication is essential. However, when operating across industries (or if we’re being honest, even departments) it can feel as if everyone is speaking a different language. Often terminology and jargon are thrown around, leading to confusion, miscommunication, and general chaos.

The CPG (Consumer Packaged Goods) industry is no different.

Having a clear and shared understanding of the terms and phrases used in an organization can be a powerful tool to help streamline operations and increase efficiency, especially when the same term may have different meanings to each party.

That’s why we have compiled over 250 of the most used CPG terms, to ensure that you and your team are all on the same page.

Let’s get started!



Absolute Change (Abs Chg): This is the method of measuring the change for a variety of variables from the current and previous year.            

Absolute Discount: This is the method of measuring the dollar and cent difference of a product’s regular or base price versus the promoted or sale price.   

Absolute-Minimum Pricing: The absolute lowest price a product can be sold for.       

Advertising Allowance: The amount of money a manufacturer pays a retailer to advertise and promote a product or brand.    

Agency of Record (AOR):  an agency that has been designated as a marketer's primary partner; a designation given by a client to signify a marketing agency's role as the primary source of a particular service       

All Commodity Volume (ACV): is a common way to measure the size of a store or retailer by determining the total retail dollar sales for an entire store across all products and categories. The total annual dollar volume in a given geography expressed as a percentage or share of the total market for that commodity.            

All Commodity Volume Distribution Percentage (% ACV Distribution): A percentage gauging the extent of the distribution of a particular product or brand across stores.      

All Commodity Volume Merchandising Percentage (% ACV Merchandising): A percentage measuring the extent of merchandising support for products or brands across stores. Typically used to evaluate merchandising conditions like feature only or display only.        

All Outlet Combined (AOC): The total market for a product (or brand/product category) across all outlets, including retail, direct, and e-commerce.       

ANA: Association of National Advertisers

ANSI: American National Standards Institute

Any Promotion: Also referred to as “any merchandising” — stores that allow various forms of promotion and merchandising. This could include (for instance) Display Only, Feature and Display, or Price Reduction Only.                        

Approved Product List (APL): The term for the inventory of products authorized by retailers.

Area of Dominant Influence (ADI):  defines designated market areas based on media coverage.        

ASM: Assistant Store Manager

Attribute: Also known as “product attributes” or “characteristics,” – the unique aspects that set one product apart from the competition. Attributes include various features such as appearance, packaging, size, branding, color etc.           

Authorized Item: Similar to an “approved product list” – a product that’s been approved by a retailer for merchandising and selling.          

Average Items Carried (AIC): The average number of items a particular retailer stocks. It can be segmented by category, sector, brand etc. Alongside Average Items Selling, it helps measure Total Distribution Points.             

Average Items Carried (AIC): being one of the two components to total distribution points, AIC measures the average number of items a retailer carries of a category, segment, brand, etc.          

Average Items Selling (AIS): Measures the average number of items a retailer sells of a category, segment, brand, etc. Alongside Average Items Carried, it helps measure Total Distribution Points.         

Average Price: the average price a shopper pays for a product. This is measured by the total dollars spent by the total volume.             

Average Retail Price (ARP): The average amount spent by consumers on a single unit of a particular product. This is measured across all stores in a particular market.          



Back Stock: The number of products available to restock in-store displays.             

Backorder: When a product is currently out of stock but is being reordered.             

Balanced Features: a merchandising condition that presents short-profit and long-profit products together as a combination sale.             

Banner: Either – the overall operating name of a retailer (i.e., the name that consumers would know a store by, such as Walmart) or – a form of in-store advertising to highlight particular brands or products.        

Bar Code: A machine-readable code in the form of numbers and parallel lines printed on a product’s packaging. Primarily used for stock control, it contains a product’s Universal Product Code (UPC) and other identifying information.     

Base Price: The basic cost of a product (usually calculated by dividing the overall cost by unit volume).     

Base Sales: The amount of a product that’s sold (or projected to have sold) without any promotions/merchandising.            

Base Weighted Weeks (BWW): A measure of the quantity of promotional support a product has received. Unlike Cume Weighted Weeks, BWW reflects the relative significance of individual retail stores for sales of a product.            

Basket Size: The amount spent by customers (often across multiple products) in a single transaction.            

BDI: Brand Development Index

Benchmark: A specified standard that any promotional or sales activity can be calculated against.   

BFD: Best Food Day: day of the week a daily newspaper usually carries its largest volume of retail grocery ads.

BHA: Back Haul Allowance:  a fee charged by retailers to pick up shipments at the manufacturer's distribution center.

Bill Back: When a manufacturer is billed by a retailer or distributor after a promotion or performance (such as shipping) occurs.     

Bin: A retailer that stores and sells loose or bulk products.          

Brand Block: A promotional tactic used by retailers. All of a brand’s products are displayed in the same shelf location – creating a strong visual impact.

Brand Equity: A brand’s value is determined by customer attitudes towards it.          

Brand Manager: An individual with responsibility for managing overall marketing and communications for a specific brand.      

Buy One Get One Free (BOGO): A promotion allowing consumers to buy one product and receive another (usually the cheaper item) free of charge.             

Buy Online, Pick Up In-Store (BOPIS): Also, “Click and Collect” or “Order and Pick-Up” – an e-commerce term where the customer will collect the item in-store, as opposed to getting it delivered.        

Buying Committee: a review committee that evaluates and purchases new products, deals, and special promotions.

Buying Habits: A term describing consumers’ spending behaviors and preferences.     

Buying Rate: Also known as “Item Sales per Item Buyer” or “Sales per Buyer,” – a measurement (which can be in dollars, units, or volume) of the average amount of a product purchased by an individual buyer or household over one year.           


C-Store: Convenience Store

Cannibalization: When sales of one product are reduced as a consequence of increasing sales of another.   

Case Code: The distinct machine-readable numerical code displayed on a product’s casing and pallets. Sometimes also known as a “Universal Product Code.”

Case Stack Deal: A promotional deal for retailers, enabling them to buy multiple cases of a single product.          

Case Stack: A display technique used by retailers. Cases are stacked on top of each other, with consumers able to take products from the top cases.

Category Analysis: an evaluation of a particular product category to define its strengths, weaknesses, etc.  

Category Management: The process of analyzing sales, product selection, and promotional history with the aim of increasing sales of a particular product group. 

Category Pricing: The set pricing policy that determines the retail price for any and all products within a certain category.           

Category Review: When a retailer evaluates their product categories (either en-masse or individually) with a view to assessing and improving performance.   

CCR: Customer Centric Retailing

CDI: Category Development Index

Center Store: The center or middle section of a large retailer. Most consumer packaged goods are placed here.        

Channel of Distribution: The links ensuring a product is transported from growers to producers, manufacturers, wholesalers, retail stores, and ultimately to consumers.           

Characteristic: Also referred to as an “attribute,” – the unique aspects and features that set one product apart from the competition.          

Circular: A form of printed or email advertising highlighting current sales and promotions. It is usually sent directly to a large number of consumers.             

Club Store: Retail chains that charge annual membership fees (such as Costco or BJ’s Wholesale), usually selling bulk items at cheaper or wholesale prices.           

COD: Cash On Delivery

Co-Marketing: Also known as “Co-op advertising,” – when a retailer and product manufacturer work together to create marketing and advertising campaigns.       

Competitive Retailer Marketing Area (CRMA): The geographic area in which a retailer operates –used to compare a retailer’s performance against its competition.     

Consumer Promotion: The various marketing and advertising tactics used to encourage product sales and brand awareness.          

Convenience Channel: (also known as C-Stores) is one of the common retail channels within the CPG industry, typically in the forms of gas stations, standalone stores, and bodegas. This form of retail store offers a limited stock of products to its customers. Their products can range from staple pantry items to domestic beers, and "on-the-go" snacks. 

Cost of Goods Sold (COGS): The total costs involved with the manufacturing, selling, promoting, and distributing of consumer packaged goods. 

COT: Class of Trade

Coupon: A promotional offer (usually in printed form) allowing consumers to redeem a monetary discount at the point of sale.       

CPG: Consumer Packaged Goods

CPM: Cost Per Thousand

CRM: Customer Relationship Management:  Computer-based methods of tracking customer interactions

Cross-merchandising: The practice of displaying related products (from separate categories) together to encourage additional purchases. For example, beer and nachos or pancakes and syrup.          

Cume Weighted Weeks (CWW): Cume is short for “cumulative,” whereby the reach and frequency of merchandising support are assessed over a given amount of time.  

Cut In: When a retailer introduces a new product, necessitating a change to existing product shelf placements.         

Cycle: The period an in-store promotion or event will run for (usually two weeks to one month).   



Days of Supply (DOS): How long the current on-hand inventory will last.  

Days Sales Outstanding (DSO):  The average number of days it takes a company to collect revenue after a sale has been made.    

Deal Pack: A method of packaging several products together to emphasize consumer promotions. 

Department Manager: The individual responsible for managing a particular store department. Jobs include ordering products, overseeing marketing, and organizing price markdowns and sales reports.         

Designated Market Area (DMA):  a geographical area defined by the exposure of its population to the same media outlets; Nielsen recognizes 210 DMAs in the U.S., typically identified by the largest city within them.

Direct Buyer: A product buyer that purchases straight from manufacturers (as opposed to using a wholesaler).       

Direct Store Delivery (DSD): When a manufacturer delivers products directly to retail stores.

Display Execution: A quantification of consumer purchases made from a display whilst a promotion is running.  This is calculated by the week durations of the display divided by the week durations of any feature.   

Display: this is a temporary second location for a product aside from its regular shelf placement, typically found as an endcap or in-aisle display.

Distributor’s Brand: Privately labeled product brands created, owned, and managed by retailers.   

Dollar Sales: The dollar amount generated by product retail sales. This is calculated by multiplying the unit sales and average price, divided by the unit.     

Dollar Store: a retail channel that offers a limited number of products and typically sells their products for $1.          



Early Bird Allowance: An incentive given by manufacturers to encourage retailers to order seasonal/promotional products in advance.     

Edge Crush Test (ECT):  a test of corrugated board to determine the force that will crush standard board while standing on its edge; the test measures the stacking strength of corrugated boxes and fiberboard.

EFT: Electronic Funds Transfer  

Electronic Article Surveillance (EAS):  uses security tags and special detection equipment; systems are installed at entrances and exits and set off an alarm when the tag passes through the equipment without having been deactivated.           

Electronic Data Interchange (EDI): The direct sharing of data through standardized computer formats.             

Electronic Retailing: (also known as "E-Tailing") is the sales of products and services through the Internet via online commerce websites and applications, as opposed to a brick-and-mortar store.    

End Cap: A prominent merchandising space (usually reserved for promotions) located perpendicular to the end of store aisles.     

EPS: Expandable Polystyrene Styrofoam

Equivalized (EQ) Sales: The physical volume of a product sold by a retailer. Units are relevant to the category, and used when comparing products of different sizes. Common EQ sales units include pounds (LBS), ounces, gallons, or cases.            

Everyday Low Price (EDLP): Also known as “Everyday Value” (EDV) – when a retailer prices a product consistently, without promotional discounts.    


Facing: Rows of product stocked on store shelves or displays “facing” the consumer. Brands with high sales often have more facings.         

FCC: Federal Communications Commission

FDA: Food & Drug Administration

FDM (Food/Drug/Mass-Merchandise): A market segment of retail channels specializing in food, beverages, medicine, and general household products.             

FDMx: stands for “Food-Drug-Mass excluding Walmart,” meaning that a product is sold in those specific retail channels aside from Walmart.       

Feature: (also known as a Flyer) is printed advertising material distributed by the retailer usually weekly through newspapers, direct mail, or in-store magazines.         

Field Representative: Agents (usually working on behalf of manufacturers) that travel to retailers in order to negotiate sales, deliver and discuss products, and work on in-store displays.

First In First Out (FIFO):  An inventory rotation system where the oldest stock is put on sale first.             

Food Mass Merchandiser: A common type of retailer offering a large assortment of food (and non-food) products.    

Forward Buy: Also known as “Buyout” – where products are held in backstock up until the end of a promotional period in order to increase sales profits.     

Free Fill: Products given for free (or “sold at no charge”) to retailers – usually to encourage distribution and future sales with a specific store.           

Freight on Board (FOB): The price paid by distributors at the point that products are picked up from manufacturers.     

Frequent Shopper Program: A marketing tactic where regular customers have a profile (usually in the form of a membership card or phone number) through which they receive product discounts and other benefits.           



General Merchandise: Common non-food packaged goods – most often products with high sales volume and comparatively low prices.  

Generic Brand (Product): is a product or good sold without a specific brand name.  

Giveaway: A promotion in which customers receive free product(s) when purchasing another.      

GMD: General Merchandise Distributor

Grocery Wholesaler: The middleman who purchases a manufacturer’s goods to resell them in smaller quantities to multiple retailers.  

Gross Rating Points (GRP):  A measure for the amount of media advertising supporting a brand over a particular period of time.         

Group Advertising: When retailers combine advertising budgets to improve efficiency and reduce cost.         


HBA: Health and Beauty Aids     

HBC: Health and Beauty Care    

High-Low Pricing: A marketing technique where a high retail price is set for a product, but is frequently discounted through promotions.     

Hip Pocket Deal: A price reduction given by manufacturers to certain retail accounts.          

Horizontal Display: When similar products are placed in one line along a shelf – forming a horizontal pattern.      



ICM: Instant Coupon Machine

Impulse Product (or purchase): A product bought on a spur-of-the-moment decision rather than a planned purchase. This is often triggered by in-store displays. Batteries, magazines, sweets, and chewing gum are common examples.         

In-Ad Coupon: Coupons placed in a retailer’s printed advertisements, usually limited to specific products and timeframes.       

Incremental Revenue (or Volume / Lift / Sales): The difference between projected baseline sales volume and the sales actual volume. Incremental revenue is usually measured after a trade promotion for a specific product. The value can be negative if sales are less than expected.            

Incremental Sales: The measurement of total sales minus base sales.   

Independent: An independently owned retailer that secures stock through a central supplier.          

Indirect Selling: When a manufacturer sells their products to wholesale merchandisers, that in turn will sell the products to retailers.     

Information Resources Inc (IRI): A corporation that collects and analyses sales data from retailers, selling reports to manufacturers.         

In-Line: Products presented according to the agreed shelving planogram. (See: “Planogram”).      

Instant Redeemable Coupon (IRC): Coupons usually found on packaging, designed for immediate use by consumers.        

Institutional and Industrial Buyers: Institutions like schools and restaurants that purchase products from a wholesale grocer for consumption purposes.             

In-Store Coupon: Coupons collected within the store, for instance, via POS systems, via shelf dispensers, kiosks, or directly on packaging.    

Island Display: Freestanding merchandising that allows for products to be displayed on all consumer-facing sides. 

Items Per Hour: The average amount of a particular product that’s sold within a single hour.     

IVR: Interactive Voice Response



Just In Time (JIT):  A replenishment system that reduces the amount of space a retailer needs for back stock; the product is reordered every time the cashier rings up a sale.



Kitting: The combination of in-store marketing materials to create a promotional “kit.”

Knocked-down Display (KD):  displays that are shipped flat and generally independent of the merchandise, in consideration of freight costs and logistical issues; they must be assembled and packed at the store.



Landed Cost: The amount a distributor charges for picking up and delivering products, including all freight charges.             

Lift: Also see “Incremental Revenue” – the percentage of increased sales, calculated by dividing baseline sales by incremental sales and multiplying the result by 100.           

Line Extension: When a brand expands its product line to offer a new flavor, formulation, scent, size, or packaging shape to the portfolio.       

List Price: Also known as “Base Price,” – the basic cost of a product (usually calculated by dividing the overall cost by unit volume).  

Logistics: the actions related to the procurement, warehousing and transportation of items for sale.

Loss Leader: Products that are priced at or below cost – a technique used by retailers to encourage in-store visits and additional purchases with higher profit margins.   



Market Share: The measurement of product performance in comparison to competitors, calculated by dividing brand sales from category sales.       

Manufacturer Chargeback (MCB): Charges sent from distributors to manufacturers, calculated on the number of product cases shipped to a retailer.

Marketing at Retail Initiative (MARI):  A research project spearheaded by Point-of-Purchase Advertising International that is striving to develop industry standards for measuring shopper “engagement” (interaction) with in-store marketing materials.     

Merchandising Condition: Terms agreed between manufacturers and retailers, where manufacturers pay retailers to promote their products. The four most common conditions are: Temporary Price Reduction (TPR), Feature and Display (F&D), Feature without Display, or Display without Feature.             

Merchandising Condition: A variety of methods and techniques manufacturers pay retailers to promote their product to increase sales. The common four conditions retailers use are Feature without Display, Display without Feature, Feature & Display (F&D), and Temporary Price Reduction Only (TPR or TPR Only).

Merchandising Efficiency: The measurement of how effective the merchandising is excluding promotions.

MSRP: Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (aka SRP)

MULO: (stands for Multi Outlet)  Retail channels including – Food/Grocery, Drug, Mass Merchandisers, Walmart, Club Stores, Dollar Stores, Military DECA.  

MULO-C: All MULO retail channels, as well as convenience stores.           

Mystery Buyer: An anonymous "customer" that visits retail stores to evaluate store conditions, customer service, or other things without influencing the actions of store personnel.         



NARMS: National Association for Retail Marketing Services

National Distribution: When products are sold across all major retail stores and regions of the grocery network.      

Natural Channel: Also known as “Organic Channel” – specialist retailers that predominantly stock natural or organic products.   

Nielsen Company: A company that retrieves POS scanner data from retailers. Analysis and data sets are then produced for both manufacturers and retailers.    

Nitro Software: Nielsen software used for analysis and reporting on sales data. The program provides database access through Microsoft Excel.    

Non-Additive Fact: A database term for a fact/measurement that should not be summated over time/market/product. For example, price is non-additive. Dollar and unit sales, on the other hand, would both be additive (i.e., increasing over time).         

Non-Promoted Price: The price paid for a product (by consumers) when it’s not under discount.       

Non-Promoted Sales: The number of product sales when no in-store promotional activities have taken place.

Numeric Distribution: Also known as the “Percent of Stores Selling” (PSS) – the percentage of stores within a given geographic location where a product is sold.



OEM: Original Equipment Manufacturer

Off Invoice (OI): Discounts given by manufacturers at the point orders are made.  

On-Pack Promotion: Sometimes known just as “On-Pack” – coupon offers or marketing messages attached directly to product packaging. 

OPP: Opening Price Point

Out of Stock (OOS): When a product is (temporarily) unavailable for sale. This could result from higher-than-expected sales in-store, or other delays between manufacturers and distributors.           

Over the Counter (OTC): Medication that doesn’t require a doctor’s prescription to buy.       

Overlay: A promotional technique where advertising materials are adapted to include additional features or customized to specific retailers.             



Percent Discount: The percentage amount that a promotional price falls below a standard retail price.    

Pallet Display: A specific type of display constructed on standard pallets, allowing for ease of shipping and installation in stores.  

Pay Directs: Coupons refunded directly to a retailer.       

PDQ: Pretty Darn Quick:  a display that arrives pre-packed with product in a shelf-ready container.

Penetration: A data management term measuring the percentage of households that have purchased a product or shopped with specific retailers.            

Percent Change (% Chg): Most often used when comparing performance in one fiscal year against another.

Percent Subsidized Volume: The proportion of sales during promotional activities that would have been sold during a “normal” sales period. This is calculated as Promoted Sales minus Incremental Sales, then divided by Total Sales. A lower figure represents a better result.     

Perpetual Inventory System: The system that maintains an expected inventory level within a store that reflects all physical product movement sales, deliveries, credits, etc.      

Placement Allowance: A manufacturer’s budget for securing shelf space for new and promotional products.

Placement Allowance: The allowance manufacturers have when ordering new and promotional products.

Planogram (POG): A diagram directing the placement of products within retail stores. Planograms often refer to specific SKUs created for product categories and sub-categories.  

PO: Purchase Order

Point Change (Pt Chg): A similar measure to “Absolute Change” – used for figures already expressed as a percentage. For instance, the point change between 8.4% and 9.7% would be 1.3.  

Point of Purchase (POP): The location of consumer transactions, usually referring to retail stores.            

Point of Purchase Display (POP Display): A merchandiser holding products near checkouts, usually designed to increase the number of impulse purchases.        

Point of Sale (POS): The point at which products are scanned through store checkouts and transactions are completed. Sales data will be collected at this time.           

PP: Pre-Priced

Price Decrease: Also known as a “Temporary Price Reduction” (TPR) – when retailers temporarily reduce product price by at least 5%. If price decreases last longer than seven weeks, they are considered the new standard price.             

Price per EQ: The amount paid by consumers per Equivalized Unit. See also “Equivalised Sales”.       

Price per Package: Also known as “Price per Unit” – the amount consumers pay per product package. It is usually used to compare prices of comparably sized products.       

Private Label: Product lines sold exclusively by a retailer who also owns the brand. This is different from an “Exclusive Brand,” where product lines are sold only by specific retailers, but manufacturers retain ownership of the brand. 

Profit and Loss (P&L): A financial term encapsulating the total income and costs incurred during a specific period.  

Promo ARP: The average retail price (ARP) paid by consumers per product unit where promotional activity took place.        

Promoted Price: The price consumers pay for a product during a sale period.

Promoted Product Group (PPG): When a set of Universal Product Codes (UPCs) are priced and marketed together – usually to promote items of a similar size.       

Promoted Sales: The dollar amount of product sales with some form of merchandising. This metric is often used to calculate merchandising efficiency and assess levels of promotion.           

Promotion Allowance: A monetary figure (usually in the form of rebates or discounts) given by manufacturers to retailers in exchange for product marketing.        

Promotion: A marketing term for any activities designed to encourage consumer purchases. Within retail stores, “promotions” may also refer to temporary price reductions.      

Promotional Display: Where product displays are combined with some form of marketing activity, usually limited to a specific timeframe.          

Purchase Allowance: When a manufacturer reduces the amount retailers pay per case if orders are placed within a set promotional period.           

Purchase Frequency: The recurring rate at which a product is bought by the average single household, measured across a specific time period.          

Purchase Size: The average quantity of a product bought by a single household, measured per shopping trip.



Quality Discount: A reduction in price based on the quantity of cases purchased in a single order or over a specified time period.

Quality Merchandising: All forms of merchandising and promotional activities, excluding Temporary Price Reductions (TPR).

Quality Weighted Weeks (QWW): A derivation of Cume Weighted Weeks (CWW), where the reach and frequency of merchandising support are assessed over a given amount of time. For QWW, only weeks where products have Feature or Display (excluding TPR only) would be included.



R&D: Research and Development

Rack: A floor stand typically built from wire or metal – used for displaying specific products.          

Radio Frequency Identification (RFID): A technology (in the form of attached data chips) that uses electronic product codes to provide the exact position of pallets, shipping cases, or individual SKUs.        

Rebate: A form of promotional discounting where consumers purchase products at full price and later submit information (usually online, though sometimes by mail) to obtain money back.         

Regular Price: The price a consumer pays when products are not under any form of promotional discount.  

Remaining Market (ROM): A term for the geographical area in which competitors operate but your business is yet to enter. ROM is usually used as a mark of potential business opportunity.      

Reset: When major changes are made to existing planograms or department layouts – usually to incorporate new product lines, fixtures, or design updates.

Retail Channels: A broad term for any consumer-facing stores (including all MULO-C).          

Retailer Marketing Area (RMA): Also known as “Trading Area” (TA) – a geographic area (used for reporting) created in relation to individual retailers. These areas can cross state borders – for instance, Walmart Los Angeles, Walmart Pacific States, Total Walmart, etc.       

Return on Investment (ROI): The amount of monetary gain or loss a business experiences in relation to a specific investment.            

RFID: Radio Frequency Identification

RFP: Request for Proposal

RFQ: Request for Quotation

ROP: Run of Paper or Run of Press

Rotation List: The process of introducing limited edition or seasonal products that are only available in retail stores within a certain time period.             



Sales Area: The section in a retail store designated to display and merchandise products, provide customer service and check out.

Sales per $MM ACV (“Sales per Million”): A measurement referring to the rate at which products are sold. It’s commonly used when comparing sales across markets with different distribution levels. This measure is calculated by dividing the sales measure (such as units and dollars) by the market’s All Commodity Volume (ACV) in millions.   

Sales per Point of Distribution (SPPD): The number of products sold per distribution point (i.e., a specific market or retailer).       

Sampling: A marketing tactic where full-size or mini products are given free to consumers. This usually happens alongside in-store demonstrations when new products are launched.          

SAUS: Standard Advertising Unit System

Seasonality: The way in which product sales increase or decrease at certain points of the year.         

Secondary Display: When a product is placed in another location as well as its primary shelf position.           

Sell In: A term referring to retailer approval for in-store promotional campaigns.       

Sell Sheet: Information published by manufacturers to assist sales pitches to retailers. A sell-sheet will typically include detailed information on product display options, promotional offerings, pack sizes, and weights.

Shelf Life: The amount of time a product can be displayed in-store before it starts to spoil. This should not be confused with expiration dates, which tell consumers the last day a product is safe to consume.     

Shelf Price: The product price on store shelves. This can include base prices and promotional prices.

Shelf Talker: Signs attached to the edge of shelves, often used to emphasize temporary promotions or new products.       

Shipper: A complete display delivered in one carton, including all packaged merchandise. Shippers are designed to be constructed quickly and efficiently in-store.        

Shopper Marketing: Promotional activities (informed by consumer psychology insights) specifically aimed at customers within store environments. 

SKU rationalization: A process of analyzing the sales and profit levels for specific products (usually with the intention of reducing the number of SKUs in a category) to decide whether products should remain on sale in retail stores.     

Slotting: A fee paid to retailers in return for stocking a specific product. Slotting fees usually cover administrative costs of adding new items alongside potential lost sales, with room given to “unproven” products.

Specialty Channel: Retail stores selling only specific types of products (for instance, organic or environmentally-friendly).  

SPIFs: Monetary bonuses (paid by manufacturers to sales representatives) to reward success.         

Static Panel: Sometimes also referred to as a “Longitudinal Panel” – a term used in the context of household panel data (i.e., assessing consumer behavior over time), referring to a subset of registered panelists. To be incorporated in the static panel, data points have to meet time requirements (for instance, two years in the panel) as well as the number or frequency of reported transactions.  

Stock Capacity: The number of products that can be displayed and stored on store shelves.            

Stock Keeping Unit (SKU): A numerical identification assigned by retailers. This can be applied to specific products, brands, or packaging sizes.        

Store Brand: Products marketed under the retail channel’s brand name.

Suggested Retail Price (SRP): A figure recommended by manufacturers for how much a product should cost in-store.           

Sweepstakes: A form of a promotional contest in which a consumer can have a chance to win prizes.      



Temporary Price Reduction (TPR): A promotional tactic where product prices are reduced for a short amount of time.  

Tie-In Promotion: A marketing method where two products are paired together for sale. One product will often be significantly reduced or free with the purchase of the other product.

Total Distribution Points (TDP): A measure of distribution (most commonly used for brands as a whole, although sometimes product categories), including both %ACV Distribution (reach) and Average number of Items Carried (depth).

Trade Promotion: When a manufacturer pays retailers to launch in-store promotions with the aim of increasing product sales and brand awareness.             

Trading Area (TA): A geographical region with similar demographics, buying patterns, and expectations.        



Uniform Communications System (UCS): An electronic system designed to share data, orders, promotional information, and price changes, between manufacturers and distributors.              

Unit Sales: The physical volume of products sold in retail stores, usually expressed in packages. 

Universal Product Code (UPC): A unique combination of numbers assigned to products, used for identification purposes. UPCs are usually printed on packaging with accompanying barcodes for scanning at checkouts.          

Unplanned Purchase: When a consumer purchases a good or product that they didn’t intend on purchasing until they were in-store.           



Velocity: A term describing product sales movement measured against the overall category.            

Vendor Managed Inventory (VMI):  Letting a vendor or supplier have the authority to re-order or manufacture parts or products as needed.           

Vendor Shop: A specific area within a store dedicated to advertising a single brand or product vendor.

Violator: Either – signage affixed perpendicular to the main shelf, thereby sticking into (or violating) the aisle. Or – “call out” visuals added to packaging (usually in the form of a sticker) to advertise specific features.

Volume Decomposition: Also known as “Volume Decomp,” “Due-To,” and “Volume Bridge” –  The assessment of attributes that result in a change in sales due to various business drivers (for instance, distribution, pricing, or merchandising).             



Warehouse: The distribution outlet that works with retailers, distributors, and manufacturers to order, store, and ship merchandise.          

Weekly Sales Log: The tracking of sales with a description of the factors affecting those sales in a weekly time frame.     

Weighted (WTD): A measurement used in distribution that gives more “credit” for distribution to larger stores than smaller retail outlets. Weighted measures are most commonly assessed by All Commodity Volume (%ACV) – i.e., the total sales for stores across all products.          

Wholesaler: A business that purchases products directly from manufacturers.

Wing Display: A temporary display feature (also known as a “sidekick”) affixed to the side of an end cap. An end cap is one of the most prominent merchandising spaces, located perpendicularly to the end of store aisles.             



xAOC: Standing for “eXtended All Outlet Combined” – a Nielsen term. The measurement includes all retail channels with the exception of convenience stores (see also: MULO).



Year Ago (YAG): A comparison across calendar years used for comparing broad consumer trends.

Year to Date (YTD): A term referencing either the calendar year or fiscal year to date



Zero suppression: When the Universal Product Code (UPC) is shortened by eliminating any zeros.

Zoning: When sets and categories of products are organized to match store planograms (See: Planogram).

Christian Schommer, Content Marketing Specialist
I fell in love with Marketing and Sales back when I was in middle school and haven't looked back since! As a Content Marketing Specialist here at Salelytics I've been able to create content for various digital mediums that highlight my passions while developing my creativity and professional skills.

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