Preparing for the busiest retail season of the year

Now that we have reached the halfway mark of 2018, it is time to plan for the busiest retail season of the year. It may not feel like it, but as far as retail goes, the holiday season is just around the corner!

With Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Christmas and Boxing Day, November and December are two of the busiest retail months of the year. Make sure that you have all your boxes ticked and that you are on the right path to plan for success.

Take advantage of the below points to ensure that you have everything covered:

Assess your previous year’s performance and tactics: One of the best things you can do as a business is to reflect, look back on your performance for previous years and see what worked for you and what didn’t. By using this data to your advantage you are able to gauge an understanding of what will work and forecast other avenues that you can trial.  

Product assessment: Have you completed a health check of your stock? Make sure that your listings are up to date, whether you are selling online or through a marketplace. You need to make sure that your retail space is efficient, your images, descriptions and titles are optimised for best practice and that your store front is looking neat and attractive for the customer.

Check your inventory: Do you have all of your stock/inventory up to date and replenished? Be sure to have everything assessed so that your key products don’t sell out too quickly. You want to give your products the best chance.

Competitive pricing: Assess your pricing. Are you competitive? You don’t want to fall short when it comes to your competitors and to be left behind. By providing the best possible price in peak periods, your chance of eliminating the competitor increases.

Shipping: Be sure to have a plan in place, whether it is through your local courier, or Australia Post. Know how you are getting your stock out this busy season and at a competitive price. You don’t want a customer to be pushed away from a sale because of your postage fee. Timing is key at this year so make sure you communicate exactly when delivery can be expected to avoid disappointment.

Amazon Prime: From mid-June Amazon Prime became live, this means Prime members will be utilising their membership during the busy season. Make sure that your FBA stock is full and that you are involving your business in FBA if you get the opportunity, even trialing this through the peak period could be beneficial for your business.  

Promotional activity: Start promoting your product or brand early. Get out there and make sure that you are seen in the lead up to the event, whether that’s on social media, marketplaces, search engines or emails to your subscribers.

Expect to be busy: Be prepared for an influx of orders or queries. Plan staffing so you don’t fall behind. You want the increase in orders to shadow your seller feedback positively and not to come unstuck by falling behind.

The holiday season is such a great opportunity for businesses to get ahead and really make that target coming into the end of the year. Make sure you take advantage and be prepared early. To find out more about strategies for e-commerce success, contact us today.