How to improve retail execution with gamification

Mila Budeva
Mila Budeva
Mar 2, 2018

Numerous studies have examined the reasons that motivate people to play games – including high sense of achievement, instant gratification, competition, break from tedious tasks.

Gamification – applying the mechanics and psychology of games to work – can help to engage and motivate workers by triggering precisely these sentiments in a professional environment. In fact, a recent Gallup poll has revealed that 91 percent of employees say gamification helps to increase productivity and improves employee experience and engagement [1].

How can gamification be applied to retail execution and monitoring?


Retail execution and monitoring covers a wide range of activities, focused on selling as much of the manufacturer's products as possible in stores. Examples of these activities include merchandising shelves, building promotional displays, recording shelf conditions and competitors’ activity, taking product orders and communicating with retail store management.


Let’s look at how gamifying in-store execution can help to drive employee engagement for greater product performance and in-store impact.


Clear goals and milestones

Workers in the field are expected to optimise in-store execution activities and deliver consistent improvement in store standards to clients such as growth in share of shelf, promotional and planogram compliance etc. Gamification can help to provide visibility over these targets and the progress made towards them and to ensure workers’ consistent motivation.


For example, the goal for March is to increase the share of shelf for a specific soft drinks brand by 5%. Rather than simply briefing field agents on the month’s targets via email, the head office can use elements of gameplay such as leader boards, progress bars, badges and points to incentivise workers. This way workers have a clear overview of the month’s targets and their contribution.


Gamifying the execution of tasks in-store can also help to create friendly competition and a stronger sense of belonging to a team and working towards the same milestones. A leader board, for example, can show that Jane has just earned 150 points for securing a new freestanding display units (FSDUs). Joe is only 20 points behind her and on his next store call can take the lead.


This way gamification also helps to keep engagement levels consistent – workers are rewarded for every well performed tasks with points or badges which can then be translated into an experiential or material prize. A lot like a video game avatar, workers can build their profile and use the accumulated points and badges as a portfolio of operational compliance and excellence.



Transparency for management and workers

By gamifying retail execution activities, the head office can gain valuable insight into workers’ behaviour and performance. The data can then be used to provide workers with personalised feedback and guidance and provide further training, continuously improving in-store execution standards. Gamification can help to make this training more engaging, to deepen product knowledge and speed up the onboarding process – particularly valuable in the context of high employee turnover.


The data captured through gamification can also be used to create a monthly newsletter announcing top performers and targets reached, improving communication with the field and showing appreciation for frontline workers’ achievements.


How to raise in-store execution standards with Zaptic?