Device-specific, lasting products charge category

A proliferation of high-drain electronics and healthcare devices are keeping consumers in need of more battery power. Recent category introductions have focused on providing consumers with such longer-lasting options as Duracell's new Quantum alkaline battery and Energizer's improved Ultimate Lithium batteries.

(For the full category review, including sales data, click here.)

Rechargeables, while still a small segment of the category, also are seeing significant growth. Energizer recently improved its Energy Recharge Value Charger, which now features an LED status indicator that turns green when the charge is complete and flashes red when a disposable or bad battery is detected. Duracell has also developed a faster charger and a better rechargeable. "It offers a better experience for the consumer, and the better battery life allows them to use rechargeables more efficiently," said Jeff Jarrett, marketing director at Duracell.

But an ever-expanding variety of choices can create confusion in the battery aisle as consumers try to make a selection. Manufacturers are concentrating on helping to make those choices easier at the point of purchase.

"As important as offering choice to consumers is, the need to simplify the point-of-purchase decision by providing clear communication to help shoppers understand which power options best complement their devices," said Lou Martire, VP of trade development for Energizer.

Martire said that the Energizer Shopper Based Solutions initiative helps shoppers make the right battery choices at the shelf, whether they need alkaline batteries for remote controls and flashlights, lithium batteries for GPS systems and digital cameras or, as the category evolves, power options for their mobile devices. "The Shopper Based Solutions initiative provides a recommended product mix, in-store location, shelf organization and category messaging. Most importantly, we have found that retailers adopting the Shopper Based Solution strategy enjoy above-average category sales growth. Energizer has a dedicated shopper marketing team ready to help retailers implement these initiatives in their stores," he said.

"Educating consumers about which batteries offer the best performance for their specific devices often leads to purchasing multiple packs," Martire said.

In an effort to make finding the right coin battery easier, Duracell has developed a Coin Button Finder mobile website. "Consumers put their coin battery number from their device into the mobile site, and the site will tell them the battery they need," Duracell's Jarrett said.

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