Birds Eye has called on retailers to make the frozen fish category easier to shop by using innovative merchandising techniques, such as selling frozen and chilled fish side-by-side.

Consumers often shopped the frozen fish aisle towards the end of their store visit, resulting in "low engagement" with the category, Birds Eye claimed in its new Fish Report 2011. 

The company urged retailers to experiment with different approaches to in-store merchandising in a bid to better engage shoppers emotionally and increase sales. 

It said retailers should consider marketing fish throughout the store, suggesting that "with frozen fish increasingly becoming a destination category, merchandising key products in other areas of store, eg next to chilled fish and the fishmonger, will build the credibility of the overall fish offering in-store".

Retailers should also merchandise by meal occasion, stock "big sellers" at eye level, use breaded and battered fish as well as fish fingers as a "focal point", and give new product development dedicated space and point-of-sale material to ensure it stood out from the crowd, the report added.