Christmas is fast approaching, and with that comes the silly season of shopping. From Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and post-season sales, businesses have an opportunity to capitalize on billions of dollars of potential consumer spending.
What is the best way to grab customer attention, though? How do you get the customers into your store at this critical time of year? Let’s explore some of the different ways that you can prepare your store to handle the Christmas peak and get the most out of customers shopping at your business.
Identify Stock Trends and Requirements
Step one seems relatively simple but is often missed. Conducting segment research to get an idea of what your customers are looking to purchase this holiday season is a great way to identify potential wholesale giftware that could be brought in for the holiday season.
Being able to project and forecast demand based on past historical spending is also a great way to determine how much stock will be required over Christmas. With tens of billions of dollars being spent each holiday season, accurately predicting sales over this period is a great way to get as many potential sales as possible during the holiday season.
Order Your Stock As Early As Possible
In today’s logistics environment, it’s critical to get your stock orders in as early as possible. Aim to get your orders in as early as possible and stagger them appropriately.
By carefully managing your stock deliveries, you may be able to take advantage of some of the benefits of just-in-time supply chains to have the products in place for consumers when they’re needed.
If you can manage your stock levels efficiently and appropriately, your store may benefit from having the right stock available to your customers at the right time.
Don’t be afraid to utilize the power of air freight to bring in time-sensitive deliveries early – after all, receiving your Christmas stationery in January may not be the best of ideas. However, it’s not recommended to ship all of your Christmas stock over air freight, as this can be an excessively costly endeavour.
Ensure You Have Adequate Overflow Space
Now that you’ve ordered this stock, do you have enough space to store it? Often, with high volumes of stock ordered, stores may resort to temporary storeroom extensions to manage stock levels.
For example, a supermarket may consider the use of an external commercial freezer to store frozen bakery and seafood products in preparation for the holiday season, as well as delayed deliveries to manage high volume deliveries in a busy store.
Don’t be afraid to explore additional storage options – in many cases, they’re relatively inexpensive and can yield significant benefits for your business over the Christmas period, especially if you don’t have access to consistent supply chains.
Consider Christmas Casuals
Often, staffing can be a challenging space to fill over the Christmas holiday period. Staff may be able to take on additional hours, but in some cases, an additional set of hands in the store may be handy.
Forecasting Christmas demand and hiring an appropriate number of temporary staff over the Christmas period allows businesses to manage costs (not overhiring during the year) while providing an additional income source for those that may wish to earn a bit of extra change over the holiday season.
Ensure Alternative Shopping Journeys are Available
Simply put, sometimes it’s difficult for a customer to shop in-store. For example, if a customer is ill or unable to complete a significant shop in-store, offering the capacity for in-store collection or local delivery can be a great way to provide alternatives.
This can potentially lead to additional sales in the business – with demand for click-and-collect growing by more than 19% in 2020, click-and-collect options are sure to feature in the mind of in-store shoppers going forward.
It’s important not to be dissuaded by the silly season – with many holidays and lots of potential spending, businesses can take advantage of being prepared for the holiday season to get the most out of their customers. By researching your customers, stocking appropriately, and ensuring you have physical space, necessary staff, and additional shopping options, you’re sure to set your business up for success this Christmas season.