McKinsey uses cookies to improve site functionality, provide you with a better browsing experience, and to enable our partners to advertise to you. Detailed information on the use of cookies on this Site, and how you can decline them, is provided in our cookie policy. By using this Site or clicking on "OK", you consent to the use of cookies.

Drive retail performance with big data and advanced analytics

How retailers can turn big data into winning assortments, spot-on pricing, and more effective promotions for their customers

  • Assortment images

    Periscope puts best-in-class
    retail expertise at your fingertips

  • Assortment images

    Periscope listed as one of the most
    innovative vendors in assortment planning

    *Business Strategy: The Dawn of a Golden Era — Recent Developments in Assortment Planning
    View the report on our Analyst Page

As a retailer, you hold all the right cards: direct shopper relationships, extensive transaction data, and real-time feedback on what sells. However, winning isn't just about the right cards, it’s also about playing them well.

Enter Periscope®, your commercial performance coach. Our retail experts help you leverage big data and advanced analytics to reduce complexity, provide hands-on decision support, and create value across all commercial levers, from assortment management and merchandising to pricing and promotions. Periscope® supports end-to-end commercial transformations and performance improvements. We have a proven track record of helping retailers achieve and sustain revenue and margin increases of up to 10 percent.

Built on McKinsey’s best-in-class retail expertise, our solutions let you optimize and manage an unlimited number of products and prices. We help you integrate real-time data from internal and external sources into daily decision-making. Our comprehensive approach spans the entire transformation journey, from data management and insights generation to fact-based decision-making and capability building. As your one-stop commercial transformation partner, we make sure that the impact sticks.

Explore -icon -2


Periscope® for Retail supports retailers’ big data journeys in a rapidly evolving environment

How can you leverage big data to gather customer insights, improve promotional effectiveness, and create compelling product assortments? How can you identify new revenue opportunities, select the best promotions to run, and personalize offers to drive better performance? Periscope® for Retail provides an integrated framework across the merchandising spectrum. Loyalty card data enables robust analytics, fueling our solutions with critical insights, to enable you to create customer-centric promotions and assortments and achieve sustainable ROS of up to 5%.

Periscope® empowers retailers to turn big data from internal and external sources into sustainable revenue and margin gains, thanks to advanced analytics, actionable insights for fact-based decisions, and an improved way of working with vendors

We provide superior solutions as a service. Periscope® is about empowering retail managers and rewiring processes as much it is about data and systems. Our offerings are built on four pillars:

  • Actionable insights derived from advanced analytics to drive better decisions
  • 24/7 data management to make sure all data is fresh, clean, and consistently structured
  • Intuitive software solutions to help the front line integrate insights into day-to-day business decisions and operations
  • On-the-ground expert support to build capabilities across the retail organization


For example, a large home improvement retailer was struggling with declining store sales and profits. The root cause was a lack of SKU-level pricing decision support. In effect, the prices of a long tail of SKUs went unmanaged and the pricing architecture was inconsistent. The retailer used the Periscope® Price Advisor to establish price zones, based on an analysis of store clusters, and determine competitive prices for more than 70,000 SKUs in each zone. The effort resulted in a 2.5 percent margin increase. In addition, managers and merchants improved their pricing skills with the help of the Periscope pricing capability building program.

Promo _advisor _01-full

Learn -more -stage -blue

Learn More

How can retailers use big data and advanced analytics to drive commercial transformations? How can you manage retail price complexity multiplied by thousands of SKUs, hundreds of stores, and multiple channels? In this white paper, Channie Mize, Chris Goodin, and Emily Reasor discuss how the world's most innovative retailers are aligning their analytics, processes, and organizations to boost pricing excellence and profitability.


Marrying art and science to improve life cycle pricing

White Paper (3.6 MB)

Periscope solutions for price and margin optimization

  • Agile Insights

    Our team conducts interviews, creates surveys, and analyzes behavioral data and online intelligence to better understand the consumer.

  • Applied Insights

    Our proprietary tools and services help companies identify potential market growth areas, assesses product pricing and feature efficiency, and uncover sales and marketing improvement opportunities.

  • Marketing Performance

    Provides full transparency on marketing performance and enables companies to make better decisions on brand positioning and marketing-investment allocation.

  • Journey Pulse

    Benchmark your customer experience against your competitors’.

  • Journey Measurement

    Collect, analyze, and report on customer feedback.

  • Journey Analytics

    Aggregate and analyze operational customer data for key customer journeys.

  • Customer Insights

    Transform shopper data from loyalty programs and past purchases into actionable, segment-specific insights.

  • Assortment Advisor

    Optimize your assortment, based on item-level impact simulations for improved category performance.

  • Market Vision

    Track your competitive position with real-time data on an unlimited number of products and prices, both offline and online.

  • Price Advisor

    Optimize price setting across large assortments by simulating the impact of new prices with live data.

  • Promotion Advisor

    Analyze, evaluate and plan your promotional investments and marketing events across items, calendar weeks, and zones.

  • Offer Innovation

    Generate and test unique promotional offers with live micro-testing technology on digital platforms.

  • Markdown Advisor

    Drive markdown effectiveness by optimizing best distribution channel for sales, discount depth by item / location.

Explore -icon -2-white


How do you leverage big data from loyalty cards to develop shopper-centric plans? How do you determine the right pricing for different products, across different categories? Which steps do you need to take to streamline your promotional planning process? This brochure provides an overview of Periscope® solutions for price, margin, and category optimization. It also presents three real-life case examples on how retailers are using Periscope® to improve return on sales and improve margins in a fast-changing retail landscape.


Drive retail performance
with big data and
advanced analytics


Brochure (492 KB)