Whether planning for a business in the retail industry or another industry, it is essential to have a business plan in place. When determining how much information to include and what format to use for your retail business plan, you will want to determine the purpose of your business plan to drive those decisions. In this blog, I will go into more detail on what a good retail business plan should entail.  How IBM Planning Analytics can help you drive that business plan and track against it.  As well as a real-life example of a project eCapital Advisors conducted with Allen Edmonds.

6 Key Parts of a Retail Business Plan

An effective retail business plan should include 6 key parts.

  1. Executive summary
  2. Business analysis
  3. Marketing strategy
  4. Products and services
  5. Management plan
  6. Financial plan

Having a good business plan in place prior to starting an implementation of Planning Analytics is very important. Your business plan will help drive the design of your Planning Analytics model. The design of your Planning Analytics model should allow you to track and analyze your data through reporting.  And give you insight into how your business is performing against your business plan.

Planning Analytics is a powerful calculation engine that can provide deep insights and automate the planning, budgeting, and forecasting for your business. Implementing the right solution using Planning Analytics can help you collaborate seamlessly across all areas of your business to create a single source of the truth. Planning Analytics can provide many business benefits like accelerating decisions, aligning top-down strategies with bottom-up execution, and improving your ability to react in real time.

Case Study: Allen Edmonds

eCapital has worked with multiple companies in the retail industry to implement a solution to better plan their business using Planning Analytics. One of those companies is Allen Edmonds, a premium shoe company operating in the retail industry. Allen Edmonds strives to provide its consumers with many styles of shoes in a wide variety of sizes. It is important for Allen Edmonds to stock the right styles and sizes in the right stores at the right time. However, this objective is not always easy to accomplish without the ability to react in real time to a source of one truth across their business.


Analytics Solution

eCapital partnered with Allen Edmonds to transform the way they analyze their business. Using Planning Analytics, eCapital worked with Allen Edmonds to implement a solution that gives them more insight into sales, regional preferences, and more. This allows them to make better recommendations on assortments, inventory, and pricing. Using this information Allen Edmonds can make smarter decisions about which items to place in which stores. This helps them boost sales, customer satisfaction, and loyalty while also reducing inventory levels at the same time. This allows Allen Edmonds to operate more efficiently and provide its customers with all the products and services they desire.


The solution quickly returned great results that allowed them to plan their business more efficiently. Allen Edmonds saw a 10% lift in forecasting accuracy using Planning Analytics. They reported that the results of one major event to be within 3% of the forecast. Planning Analytics also gave them 50% faster reporting. In fact,  they believe saves one day per week on weekly strategic planning alone. It also allows their planners to support rapid growth in stores or online.

This is just one of the many successful Planning Analytics implementations performed by eCapital in the retail industry. eCapital can help your business design and implement a Planning Analytics solution that fits your business needs. Using Planning Analytics, your business can transform its planning process into a much more informative and efficient process that will help your employees make the most informed decisions at the right times.