Pencils, Books and… Shampoo?

This is the second in a 4-part series on back to school retail. Read part 1 here 

Back to school is usually dominated by school supplies, apparel, and shoes. However, even industries not usually associated with back to school can benefit from the second biggest spending season of the year for retail. Here’s why:

1.) Increased Retail Foot Traffic:


Discount stores are well known for carrying pretty much everything. Need to get gardening supplies, a casserole dish, some new socks, and a 300 pack of mailing labels all in one day? Chances are shoppers won’t go to 4 different stores, when they can buy all of them in one place.  Is it any wonder that discount stores benefit the most from back to school shopping? Two out of three shoppers went to discount stores in 2012 for their back to school needs (more than any other type), so any product sold in the Walmarts and Targets of the world can benefit from the the back-to-school crowds.

2.) Extra Spending Power From Your Customers:


From August 2-4th 11 different states are offering shoppers a tax free weekend on school supplies, clothing, computers, books, and even sports equipment. But that doesn’t mean other goods have to feel left out. According to research by The Washington Economics Group, sales of non-taxable goods at large retailers during Florida’s 2010 tax-free holiday increased by 35% when compared to the year before. This is a huge opportunity for other industries. Consumers have more money to spend because of sales tax holidays. Make sure your product is attracting the customer’s attention.

3.) Back to College:


While the little ones head back to the classrooms, we can’t forget about the 17-23 year olds heading to college. In 2012, they spent 63% more than back to school shoppers, representing $53.5 Billion dollars of the back to school pie.  That’s $53.5 Billion dollars spent on things like extra-long twin-sized bed sheets, Easy Mac (the new Ramen Noodle), futons, televisions, and those little white boards that stick to the front of your door.  74% of college shoppers bought personal care items, 69% stocked up on food, 54% got electronics and 47% spent to furnish their dorm room.

So while we may be back to the season of pencils, books and teachers’ dirty looks, don’t forget that back to school can be a fruitful season for anyone. Do you work in housewares, consumer electronics, or inexpensive, microwavable pasta dishes? Treat this like you would any other season with increased sales, and make sure your retail execution is flawless

We can help with that – Request a demo to learn how

New Features, New Faces, More Gigwalking at Retail

Did you know…

According to GMA estimates, 25% of out-of-stock items are actually in the store, just not in the right place?

3/4 of out of stocks are because of problems at the retail level? (Also from the GMA)

IHL Group estimates that inventory distortion (out of stocks and over stocks) cost retailers nearly $800 Billion globally every year.  

There are many different kinds of businesses that have benefited from deploying our workforce to get things done anywhere. When you look at the numbers, it’s clear the ones who need it most are the consumer goods and retail industries, and those numbers don’t even count things like poor customer service, display non-compliance and other errors at retail. 

As we scale, we continue to learn what the industry needs to collect data and perform work in stores with Gigwalk. Not only did we release great new features to help customers filter and analyze all the data Gigwalkers collect, but we’re also building an entire team dedicated to giving consumer goods and retail companies the best possible experience. 

Our New Features

Gigwalk is built to do more than just report back on the state of your retail execution. Our product can help you spot trends, and if you want, even fix problems on site so that you don’t miss a single day of sales. Some tasks are small, such as requiring a certain format of response from your Gigwalker. Others are huge - allowing you to see all your data in easy-to-read graphs, and filter them to spot trends as your data comes in.  Here’s an example: Let’s say you want to see why sales at a specific retailer are lower than at others. Once you go to the results section, you’ll see graphs of your results from all locations like this:

Then you can filter based on any number of variables to find out where the trouble might be. Here for example, we filtered to a particular retailer:

Gigwalk’s New Team

Did you know Gigwalk now has 2 new offices? In addition to our headquarters in San Francisco, we now have employees in Sarasota, Florida and Northwest Arkansas, and are hiring more people in Minneapolis, Chicago, and New York!  This team is focused on making sure Gigwalk is as helpful as possible to people in the consumer goods and retail industries. Who better to lead this team than two industry vets?

Tom Dowdy is our General Manager of Retail and Brands.  He’s been in the CPG/Retail industry for over 25 years holding sales & marketing positions with Johnson & Johnson, Unilever and Combe Inc. Tom founded National In-Store in 1994 which became one of the top 5 retail service companies in the USA and was sold to Omnicom Group.

Joe Tomandao is our Vice President of National Brands. Joe was most recently at Field Agent, and has also worked at Driveline Merchandising, Promoworks, and ClickIQ. Joe’s our first employee in Northwest Arkansas and has been helping people in the retail and CPG industries for 10 years. 

We love hearing feedback from our customers about what we can do to help them have the best possible experience on Gigwalk.  If you ever want to give us feedback on the posting experience, or even just say hi, you can email us at, or to request a demo, enter your information here, and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible!

$11 Billion Up For Grabs, and 3 Weeks Left to Grab It

Get more information about retail audits with Gigwalk

The Super Bowl is the most watched TV event in the US, drawing in over 111 million viewers. 

Of course, not everyone watches it for the game. Commercials get almost as much glory as the players, and advertisers pull out all the stops so they can get the most out of the priciest 30-second spot on television.  


For all the money advertisers spend ($250 million in 2012), consumers spend even more. It is the second biggest time of the year for food according to the National Retail Federation, and between the beer, hot wings,  jerseys, those foam hand things, and even TVs, consumers spent over $11 billion dollars on it in 2012. 

So while the Super Bowl may not be as big at retail as Christmas or Thanksgiving, perfect retail execution for it is just as important for some products, and even more important for others (see: foam hand things)

That’s where Gigwalk comes in.  We can help you get any kind of retail work done in time for the big game, whether it’s retail audits, mystery shops, or even setting up and fixing displays. After all, the Super Bowl gets some of the best displays of the year. (Check out a few of our favorites below)

We can have your retail work ready to go with plenty of time before the big game.  Get in touch today, and we’ll help you get started.  







Gigwalk’s CEO, Bob Bahramipour conducted a webinar for the National Association for Retail Marketing Services (NARMS) about the importance of speed, flexibility, coverage, and accuracy when conducting retail audits - especially for important holiday retail executions. (Which also exist outside of Q4 by the way…) Check out a recording of the webinar, or get in touch to learn more.