RMS Academy-Coverage Analysis (en)




Learning Objectives

The objective of this session is to understand what coverage is and how coverage applies to client data. Following this session you will be able to: 

  • Demonstrate an understanding of coverage.
  • Describe coverage terminology including: Industry Coverage Matrix, Brand Coverage Analysis and the four possible scenarios for Brand Coverage.
  • Examine coverage analysis scorecards to discuss and apply coverage recommendations to business situations.

Coverage Overview

What is Coverage?

Definition & Calculation 

Coverage is the percentage of manufacturer’s shipments captured by Nielsen’s reported sales.

Coverage = Nielsen Reported Sales  x 100  
                         Client Shipments


Why use Coverage?

Purpose of Coverage: Provides comparison of the overlap between manufacturer’s shipment data and Nielsen sales data.

Benefits of Coverage 

  • Relevance: Provides insight into how Nielsen RMS data accounts for client distribution changes, observed in the degree of overlap.
  • Consistent: Provides ongoing benchmark to measure consistency of overlap in shipments and sales
  • Insights: Helps measure pipeline size, delay and market size​​​​​​​
  • Opportunity: Provides insights into new channels or geographies to increase Nielsen data scope

Path to Purchase

Where are all of the possible places a consumer can buy a product, for example bottled water?

Locations include:

  • Grocery stores (Large and Small)
  • Hypermarkets
  • Supermarkets
  • Self-Service/Mini
  • Warehouse
  • Sporting Events
  • Semi-wholesalers
  • Other

Product Flow from Factory to Consumers

Nielsen measures consumer sales in a well-defined set of retail stores. A Coverage analysis examines the whole distribution chain and takes into account market conditions and measurement issues standing between Factory and Consumers. 


Coverage Influencer: In vs. Out-of-Scope

What are channels typically covered by RMS? What channels are not?

Coverage Influencer: Semi-Retailing

Coverage Influencer: Product's Life Cycle

Additional Coverage Influencers

What additional influencers may cause pipeline delays (getting product from factory to consumers)?

Product Distribution Indirect Channels Inventory Level Shelf Life Product Characteristics Time of Year
Pipeline length, Time lag, all depend on the product distribution pattern Wholesalers and suppliers importance affects Supply Chain length & pipeline delays Surplus inventory in the chain, warehouse, & at retail can impact pipeline delays (ex. Special Events/Promotions) Perishable products with a short Shelf Life have shorter pipeline delays Regular products vs. promotional products, Large vs. small products, New vs. Mature - all impact pipeline Seasonal 

Components of Coverage Analysis

Industry Coverage Matrix

What is Industry Coverage Analysis?

Industry Coverage Analysis is the procedure used by Nielsen to establish Expected Coverage for product categories. 

Expected Coverage is the percent of sales for a category from each channel included within Nielsen sales figures.

  • Varies across time and between product categories in a country.
  • Established annually by local Measurement Science to reflect market dynamics.

Purpose of Industry Coverage Analysis

Industry Coverage Analysis Process


Exercise: Industry Coverage Matrix

  • 55%
  • 78%
  • 100%
If Nielsen includes Grocery, Convenience & Drugstores in the sample, what is Expected Coverage (the percent of sales for a category from each channel included in Nielsen sales figures) for the Beverages Industry? 

Brand Coverage Analysis

What is Brand Coverage Analysis?


  • Analysis focusing on coverage (both level of and trends between periods) for specific brands.
  • Facilitates understanding of observed variations between manufacturer shipments and Nielsen reported sales.

Brand Coverage Analysis: 4 Factors

Brand Coverage Scorecard

Example output from Brand Coverage is the Brand Coverage Scorecard. 


Interpreting Brand Coverage

Why does Coverage vary?

Reasons why "Monitor" or "Investigate" indicators may be on a Brand Coverage Scorecard include:

  • Pipeline Delays
  • Different Market Definition
  • Universe Estimation
  • Sampling
  • Data Collection

Brand Coverage Scenarios


Coverage Summary

How can coverage help strengthen the relationship between Nielsen and clients?
Why will you use coverage?

Coverage is the link to explain differences between manufacturer shipment data and Nielsen's sales data.
Coverage offers: 

  • Relevance: covering a significant percentage of retail sales in the country by different channels.
  • Consistency: Allowing meaningful comparison between brands, categories and data sources.
  • Trendability: Providing the ability to compare between periods and uncover changing distribution patterns.