Sensitivity Coefficient – The average percentage change in consumption corresponding to a 1 percent change in disposable personal income.
Sequence Bias – The distortion in the answers to some questions on a questionnaire because the replies are not independently arrived at but are conditioned by responses to other questions; the problem is particularly acute in mail questionnaires because the respondent can see the whole questionnaire.
Sequential Sample – A nonprobability sample formed on the basis of a series of successive decisions. If the evidence is not conclusive after a small sample is taken, more observations are taken; if still inconclusive after these additional observations are taken; At each stage, then, a decision is made as to whether more information should be collected or whether the evidence is sufficient to draw a conclusion.
Served Market – The business develops, manufactures, and markets products appropriate to a selected segment of the market. It should be noted that the market for which the product is developed (called the qualified market) and the market that is targeted in marketing efforts will often not overlap precisely. The overlap between the qualified market and the target market represents the served market.
Service Desk – A station within a store where customers take merchandise for exchange or credit and receive information or other services, depending upon company policy.
Service Quality – An area of study that has developed to define and describe how services can be delivered in such a manner as to satisfy the recipient. High quality service is defined as delivery of service that meets or exceeds customers’ expectations.
Shelf Stock – In a complex distribution system, inventory occurs at the plant and at a field locations. Shelf stock refers to inventory that has been accumulated for display at the point of final sale.
Shelf Talker – A printed card or other sign used in retail stores to call attention to a shelved product. It is commonly is attached to the shelves or railings of display cases.
Shrink-Wrap – A packaging process that allows the shipper to extend a clear plastic covering over a package or set of packages. The clear plastic is then circulated through a heat tunnel where the film shrinks to adhere closely to the package or collection of packages.
Shrinkage – 1. (physical distribution) The absence of book inventory. The presence of shrinkage suggests that there is less inventory than expected at some specific location in the channel. 2. (retailing definition) The difference between the recorded value of inventory (at retail) based on merchandise bought and the actual retail value of actual inventory in stores and distribution centers divided by retail sales during a time period. Shrinkage is caused by theft by employees and/or customers, merchandise being misplaced or damaged, and clerical errors.
Simple Random Sample – A probability sample in which each population element has a known and equal chance of being included in the sample and in which every combination of n population elements is a sample possibility and is just as likely to occur as any other combination of n units.
Simple Tabulation – A count of the number of cases that fall into each category when the categories are based on one variable.
Simulated Test Market – A form of market testing in which consumers are exposed to new products and to their claims in a staged advertising and purchase situation. Output of the test is an early forecast of sales and/or market share, based on mathematical forecasting models, management assumptions, and input of specific measurements from the simulation.
Simulated Test Marketing – Test marketing done by firms in shopping malls or consumers’ homes as a prelude to a full scale marketing test for the product.
Single Column Tariff – The simplest type of tariff that consists of a schedule of duties in which the tariff rate applies to imports from all countries on the same basis.
Single-Zone Pricing – The practice of setting one price for all buyers regardless of their distance from the seller.
Situation Analysis – The systematic collection and study of past and present data to identify trends, forces, and conditions with the potential to influence the performance of the business and the choice of appropriate strategies. The situation analysis is the foundation of the strategic planning process. The situation analysis includes an examination of both the internal factors (to identify strengths and weaknesses) and external factors (to identify opportunities and threats). It is often referred to by the acronym.
Size Lining – This is related to the concept of price lining. It is the selection of predetermined size points at which merchandise will be offered. For assistance to customer selection, sizes should be according to customer behavior -e.g., junior sizes together.
Size Scale – A chart of the proper quantity of an item to order in each size.
Skimming Price Policy – A method of pricing that attempts to first reach those willing to buy at a high price before marketing to more price-sensitive customers.
Slotting Allowance – 1. (retailing definition) A fee paid by a vendor for space in a retail store. 2. (sales promotion definition) The fee a manufacturer pays to a retailer in order to get distribution for a new product. It covers the costs of making room for the product in the warehouse and on the store shelf, reprogramming the computer system to recognize the product’s UPC code, and including the product in the retailer’s inventory system.
Snake Diagram – A diagram (so called because of its shape) that connects with straight lines the average responses to a series of semantic differential statements, thereby depicting the profile of the objects being evaluated.
Snowball Sample – A judgment sample that relies on the researcher’s ability to locate an initial set of respondents with the desired characteristics; these individuals are then used as informants to identify still others with the desired characteristics.
Social Advertising – The advertising designed to educate or motivate target audiences to undertake socially desirable actions.