Toy retailer The Entertainer has tied together stock allocation and sales of its products across its stores, websites and third-party websites by implementing a new merchandising solution.

The system from Neoworks was soft launched in time for Christmas ahead of full implementation and is automatically integrated into The Entertainer’s two websites, its offers on Amazon and eBay and the order management and warehouse management systems that process and ship the goods to customers.

This automates the end-to-end selling process, including product listing, stock availability updates and cross outlet merchandising, and ensures the retailer can track and maintain availability of key products while also helping it to shift seasonal stock.

The Entertainer multichannel director Duncan Grant said: “This gives us flexibility across our channels and has led to a far higher availability of stock.”

Neoworks director Nigel Atkinson said fluctuating customer demand as shoppers use comparison, rapid changes in pricing, promotional activities and competitor behaviour all pose new challenges.

He added: “Online retailers must have tight control over their merchandising operations. For The Entertainer most product lines are automated so the merchandising teams can focus on the key products that drive sales, ensuring availability at their stores and websites and also meeting availability criteria on sites such as Amazon.”

The strategies employed are a combination of statistical projections based on historical sales data and minimum store target levels.