The holiday season is a crucial time for retailers of all kinds. Whether you run a grocery store, a convenience store (c-store), or a specialty retail shop, planning your inventory for holidays like Christmas and Thanksgiving is essential to meet customer demand, maximize profits, and ensure a smooth shopping experience. We know it is only September, but the holidays sneak up on you! Let's discuss the optimal timing for ordering holiday inventory to help you make the most of this festive season.
2018 C-Store Holiday Preparation
The holidays have already begun! Thanksgiving has passed, Hanukkah has started, and Christmas along with New Years is right around the corner.
Retails sales are expected to grow more than 5% from last year's winter holiday season. To put that into perspective, retailers could make more than $1 trillion in holiday sales for 2018. That is an amazing amount that should not be taken lightly.
Make a list and check it twice. Here are our suggestions for the most important steps to take while preparing your c-store for the 2018 holiday season.
With these expected sales, it is important to have enough inventory to meet the demand. Yet be wise and do your own research to see which products and services will need to be increased. The worst scenario would be having ordered too much supplies, rather than not enough. Regardless, you want to cater to your customer’s needs and make sure your shop is the difference. The biggest benefit in inventory may be the simple last minute supplies! This could be extra plates and napkins to the extra hot sauce needed for that special holiday party.
Now that you have inventory checked of your holiday list, it is time to get the word out there. Creating offers and deals would create buzz to attract even more customers than before. Depending on your kind of customer, be sure to promote in the best way that communicates to them! You know your customers better than anyone and can know what grabs their attention.
Having supplies and reaching out to customers is only part of the holiday preparations. Getting into the holiday spirit does not have to put a dent into your wallet! Believe me, your customers will notice the little things. Putting up banners, lights, and even a small tree will create a difference. Not only will it boost moral for your employees, but it may encourage customers to spend more time in your store.
To really stand out from the competition, it is necessary to treat your customers like guests in your own home. Be sure to welcome everyone with a big smile, no matter how much they plan to spend. Encourage your employees to do the same! Greeting customers as soon as they step into your shop, will break the ice. Go the extra mile and see if you could make their shopping experience any better. After all, if the roles were in reverse, wouldn’t you want to be treated with holiday joy?
Spend time with Loved Ones
This is the busiest time of the year. Shopping for some may be just as important as the holidays themselves. By making that list and checking it off, you won’t have to worry about meeting expectations. Don’t forget about the people that matter in your life. Customers come and go, but family and friends will always be there. Be sure to decide your time accordingly and make time for those significant in your life. Making sure you express your feelings to your loved ones is the purpose of these holidays.
We here, at goEBT, hope everyone has had and continues to have an amazing time with friends and family this holiday season!
- Sources: Deloitte