Top Tips for Smooth Christmas Operations
Christmas is an action-packed time for retailers across the country, with Britons spending billions on gifts for their loved ones every year. With the increased demand on retailers, failure to prepare properly could mean that the internal operations of your business could be headed for disaster. If you need some tips on preparing for the Christmas rush, read on.
Look at your seasonal data
Consumer behaviour tends to differ greatly at Christmas than during other times of the year. This can sometimes make inventory planning hard as you have to decide on what items will be most popular. A good way to start is to look back on last year’s Christmas sales in order to spot patterns in the data and give you a good prediction of stock volume if not specific products. With a number of factors that can influence consumer buying behaviour - trends, financial situations and advertising, an accurate forecast may be tricky, but looking back on past figures is a valuable exercise.
Stay on top of your stock control
As the Christmas period gets closer, pay attention to the items proving to be most popular, and adjust your inventory accordingly. If you’re looking for a system that enables both ease and accuracy, consider a perpetual system that monitors stock levels and uses real-time data to keep an eye on stock control and order when necessary.
Hire extra staff
Christmas is always a busy time for all retail businesses so you may need a few extra helpers during this time. It’s common for businesses to hire temporary staff over the Christmas period, so why not consider recruiting some extra pairs of hands during November, so you are fully prepared. Sometimes it can be difficult to predict your footfall and whether hiring people will be financially viable. However, the flexibility of temporary shift workers, gives you the option if necessary, whilst also meaning your permanent staff can take off any holiday they need.
Check your IT systems
The last thing you need to contend with over Christmas is an IT issue, so make sure all your systems are in place and running smoothly before the rush. It’s also worth while looking at your POS system to make sure everything is up to date and the relevant restrictions are placed, where necessary. Christmas is a busy time for all. However, by checking your systems are in place and working correctly for each user, you can avoid last minute mishaps which could drastically affect your overall profit.
Change up your marketing plan
Christmas is a great time to switch up your marketing plan and make room for some festive tactics. Consider a festive email newsletter to keep your customers up to date with any offers or new products. At this time of year, customers are browsing a vast amount of businesses in order to find the best deals possible. In order to ensure they buy from you and not your competitors, if is important you begin to entice them with offers or showcasing how you’re planning to go the extra mile this Christmas.
Christmas will be here before you know it, so it’s time to start preparing. Taking steps like these could determine whether your business thrives this festive season. If you need a review of your current systems or would like to talk to one of our experts on how we can make your inventory and stock control easier, fill in our contact form or call us today on 0115 984 4988.