The arrival of fall brings with it the festive season and thus the peak shopping times when people begin to buy gifts for Christmas, Hanukkah and other celebrations. So, in order to meet the demand from consumers during the upcoming busy period, it’s wise to consider your buying strategy and product selection to ensure you are fully prepared.
Below, we’ve put together five tips for strategically stocking your shelves and getting your business ready for the festive season.
Figure out the bestselling items you have in your store, according to your sales figures from previous months or years, and make it a priority to order those pieces first. This means you can always meet your consumer demand even during busy periods like the holiday season. Work out how much of your budget will be allocated to your must-have items, keeping in mind rising costs and increased prices caused by inflation. Another aspect to consider is the lead time from when you put in your purchase orders to when they are delivered to you. Avoid any supply chain or shipping delays by buying as early as possible. Reach out to the brand you’re ordering from directly to get clear details on their shipping methods, their timelines and any risks involved.
Choose evergreen products
You can go all in for the festive season and offer holiday-themed products in your store, but it is also a good idea to invest in classic, evergreen items that your customers will still be interested in purchasing long after the holidays. While it is smart to have seasonal products specifically for Christmas or Hanukkah, you can also add gift items that are always in season to your stock, such as candles, fragrances, beauty products and homeware from thee likes of Cape Island, Klomp Ceramics and FOR TMRW. This way, if you find yourself with extra inventory after the holidays, you can still continue to sell the products for the rest of the year without looking out of place.
Create a gift guide
Curate a gift guide that will help your customers navigate your product offering, discover new brands and save some time while shopping for holiday presents. A gift guide is also a great way to introduce new products to your consumers by showcasing them on a curated edit on your website or store window. Group your similar or themes products together in easy categories that appeal to their needs such as according to their budget (gifts under $50), who they’re shopping for (gifts for sisters) and their values (sustainable gifts).
Offer gift cards
You can help your customers give their recipients the gift of choice by offering gift cards or digital vouchers to your store. Gift cards over the holiday season are an opportunity for your store to be discovered by new customer when they receive one as a present, and it encourages potential customers to visit and shop at a future date. It’s also a chance to inspire consumers to be intentional about when and where they spend their money.
Allow yourself the space and contingency to react to current trends and products that are really working for your store and customers, outside of your usual buy. If novelty socks or pop-up greeting cards are flying off your shelves, then make plans to replenish your stock before the items sell out. Allocate some money in your buying plan for these types of purchases so that you can stay within your budget. Independent retailers or boutiques have more flexibility when it comes to making these adjustments, and being a member of a marketplace such as The Folklore Connect provides access to a network of brands and suppliers that can quickly fulfil your business needs.