Ready for the Holidays Series: Brand Stock Management for the Season

The holiday retail sales season is one of the biggest in Canada, but it can also be one of the most stressful — especially if you’re not prepared.

One of the key ways to making sure you are ready for the holiday rush is staying on top of your stock management.

During the holiday retail sales season, distribution centres typically handle two-to-five times the amount of inventory. The results can be worth it. Experts say most businesses make more than 20% of their revenue during the holidays. But if your stock management is not properly managed, it can be a supply chain nightmare.

According to a survey, during the 2016 holiday season, 75% of in-store consumers experienced stock-outs last year. Online shoppers had slightly less stock-outs at 63%, but that resulted in more lost sales. While 58% of brick-and-mortar store incidents translated to lost sales, 65% of online shopping stock-out incidents resulted in the shopper abandoning the sale completely.

Unfortunately, your brand’s stock management can’t be left up to the retailers. Many Canadian retailers are crunched during the holiday season, and some may even have less store staff after several provincial minimum wage increases.

As a manufacturer, this means you have to take control of your inventory. You can do this in several ways:

  • Look at historic retail data to forecast how much stock you will need in each location.
  • Examine current trends to see what new products might be popular this season.
  • Set up a stock replenishment plan with your retailers — let them know the process for when they are running low and make it as seamless as possible.
  • Set re-order points to maintain minimum stock levels.
  • Visit your top 100 retailers to check your brand’s stock levels and make sure that your products are placed on the floor and displayed how you want it.

To the last point, visiting your top 100 stores can hit several pain points all in one — you can check on your stock management, communicate a replenishment plan, and make sure your displays, price points, signage, and other brand-specifics are in place.

Even though the holiday retail sales season is coming up soon, the good news is that it’s not too late.

Visiting your top 100 stores can be turned around on a dime for you when you partner with a company that visits multiple stores or has reach across the country.

For instance, at Storesupport Canada, our team has extensive reach across Canada. Our experienced teams can survey your top 100 stores quickly and accurately, making you are ready with plenty of time before the holiday retail sales season.

Contact us today to find out more. Visit www.storesupport.ca or call 1 877 421 5081.

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