Electricals retailer Maplin has appointed data analytics specialist Rangespan to enable it to identify which products will sell well.

Rangespan will compile data on products consumers are searching for, allowing Maplin to tailor its buying and stock control.

As shoppers search for an increasingly wide variety of products online, ranging the right products is vital for retailers as they seek to select winners from among the myriad lines available that they could potentially sell. 

Maplin head of buying Lisa Pool said: “There are millions different electronics products available online in the UK, but less than 10% will ever sell. Rangespan’s service enables us to focus on the products customers want, whilst still giving them a wide choice of products.”

Maplin chief executive John Cleland has put development of its online range at the heart of his strategic plan. Maplin intends to use direct vendors in order to more than double its range of 15,000 SKUs online and “move from a 4,000 sq ft store to a virtual 20,000 sq ft shop.”

Matt Henderson, who founded Rangespan alongside fellow former Amazon executive Ryan Regan in 2011, said: “The two main challenges retailers have found in the past with substantial range expansion are difficulty in predicting which products will sell, and high administrative costs from integrating a large fragmented base of suppliers and product data.”