Can product availability predict product popularity? See our Sony case example

Can product availability predict product popularity? See our Sony case example

Anika Sihota & Yana Boiko
28 Oct · 6 mins read

It is a broad challenge to obtain information about the product range. The traditional ways to uncover data about product coverage and availability takes time. Also, it is not always possible to get this data in the new world of digital e-commerce. 

There is more than one way to determine what is the right stock level. An effective method we found is establishing retail availability and determining the product's popularity. We thought it would be interesting to dig deeper into key markets and examine who carries the most range in popular colours for Sony Dualshock 4. We estimated coverage for 47 resellers across Germany, the UK and Russia. 

From unique patterns to solid primary colours, Sony Dualshock 4 has got it all. The core black and white joysticks have been transformed into colours such as Vortex Blue and Arctic Camo. We have found over 90 SKUs across these 47 resellers. 

According to our findings, the range of colours that the reseller offer consists of the same variations (most popular colours); Jet Black, Glacier White, Magma Red, Green Camo, Midnight Blue and Wave Blue. In addition, there are also 12 colours that can be commonly seen across the retailers which have been marked as ‘Others’ in the chart below.

In terms of availability...

The UK has the highest coverage of 62%. Followed by Russia with 46% and Germany having 56%. 

From the chart outlined above, the UK takes the lead in having better coverage for popular colours, in each key reseller. The UK represents good availability coverage as they seem to be primarily focused on keeping top colours in stock. Although one of the popular colours, Wave Blue, is surprisingly low in terms of stock availability. Most key resellers have it out of stock now.

Meanwhile, Russia has a similar range of popular colours but they have a low stock. Despite this, Russian resellers are leading in coverage for limited editions. They also offer a higher stock for Wave Blue in comparison to the UK and Germany. Germany is in between the UK and Russia in terms of availability for the top colours. German resellers offer a greater range for less popular colours and almost every reseller has Wave Blue out of stock. 

Could focusing on the right colours help to manage stock better?

As we have investigated, the UK has fewer variations of colours with better availability. Russia and Germany have a bigger range of colours, yet they are short in terms of availability across the top colours. Thus, availability may predict popularity.

Correspondingly, Wave Blue is unavailable for many resellers across the markets. Does this mean that the resellers are unable to replenish it in time or the colour is losing its popularity?

The popularity investigation leads us to wonder, which method is most effective in persuading retail to carry the correct range:

1) Focusing on the top colours (as the UK does) may be helpful in managing the right range and have replenishment in time. 

2) Having a bigger range (as Russia does) will provide the customers with a greater variety of choice. Although, this approach may not assist resellers in maintaining their joystick stock in time as we can see. 

Product popularity tactics to maintain the range

It may be hard to identify if the stock is being maintained correctly, especially with the extensive product range joysticks have. Therefore, the UK’s product availability approach may be more ideal for managing large stock. 

Furthermore, this method may be used effectively for other products aside from accessories. For example, to predict the popularity of a game.

Our availability information solely reveals that Cyberpunk will be one of the most popular games. The game is not physically sold yet, however, the availability coverage is impressive - 89% worldwide. Almost every reseller digital or physical is currently offering it. Thus, the popularity will be high as a result of the availability being at a significant level. Although, in regards to the Collector’s Edition, the availability is lower and many resellers are still offering it. 

According to our findings, using this effective approach will accumulate high popularity if product availability is similarly high. Therefore, product availability reflects and determines how popular the product will be.

More from Eebz

Winning the battle with retail (but losing the video games sales war)

Publishers spend time fighting retail.. but is collapsing retail a pyrrhic victory?

Peter Laughton
4 Nov · 6 min read

Product lifecycle management and the scarcity principle

Running low on stock can help you sell more..

Peter Laughton
4 Nov · 4 min read

Top retailer websites listing errors that hold back sales

Top biggest issues with retailer websites that hold back both online and in-store sales. How can we help you improve?

Peter Laughton
31 Jan · 5 min read

Back to all blogs