CONQUER BLACK FRIDAY WITH A PLAN
As one of the biggest highlights of the retail calendar, Black Friday can be a source of great rewards for small and medium-sized retailers. Of course, without proper planning, it can also come
with many drawbacks.
By keeping a few tactical elements in mind, you can increase the odds that your retail business gets a more significant share of the rewards while avoiding some of the pitfalls.
Ask the strategic questions
Before you start your Black Friday preparations, decide on the objectives that you want your store or stores to achieve. Understanding that like many retailers, boosting your revenues is the immediate
goal, identify what other sales drivers will support that goal over the longer and more strategic term.
Ask yourself, do you want to use Black Friday to draw in fresh customers, promote new product lines, clear out old stock, or raise your online presence? By outlining objectives early on, retailers can better plan their Black Friday campaigns and are more likely to succeed in reaching short and long-term strategic goals.
Review your inventory
It’s not just about clearing out the slow movers
Even the most astute retailer has had that “I can’t believe these didn’t sell” moment. Black Friday undoubtedly provides some opportunities to turn those errors into incentives. Take a look at those
straggling items currently in store or that complete product line ordered in the wrong colour that’s just waiting in the warehouse. Now is the time to relocate the non-movers to a prime selling spot, discount the price, offer them in BOGO promotions, or repackage them in added-value gift baskets.
Also, use Black Friday as an opportunity to review your inventory lines
. Examine your margins, look at your top sellers, track their performance, and identify trending hot items. Today’s POS solutions
for small and medium-sized retailers offer intelligent features and modules that put this information at your fingertips.
Running these verifications ahead of your Black Friday sales event will give you invaluable insight as to what products to discount or not, which items to reorder and which products to add to your
mix in order to update and round out your offer.
Make a plan
Organize your sales
After looking at all of your products, organize your event by being selective about which items you put on sale for the holiday season. Choose the products that you have identified in your inventory review and set their sale start dates and sale prices. This can prevent you from falling into the trap of discounting prices on everything to try to compete with larger establishments.
A focused pricing approach is more straightforward for you and shows your customers what you can do better than the big box stores.
Run some checks
Count your stocks and implement sudden replenishments as needed. Be sure to have all your Black Friday featured products on hand, organized and ready to go when your customers show up to shop in store and online. On the most competitive shopping day of the year, nothing will impact your sales performance more than running out of products or a website outage.
Navigate your site by going through the checkout process to ensure that your system is running smoothly. If you are currently managing your single or multi-store retail business with a modern POS system, your integrated inventory and online sales management capabilities
will allow you to run these checks quickly and easily.
Create a buzz
Black Friday shoppers are far savvier than the average customer—and they are planners. So start marketing your sales event now and give your shoppers some time to prepare.
Rather than merely looking at it like another sale, approach Black Friday as an event. And just like any event, you want to get the word out through all your marketing channels.
It’s all about creating buzz. Send email teasers providing sneak peeks to your loyal customers, include a countdown in your communications and on your website, put up marketing banners on your site and in your store or stores.
The excitement around your Black Friday event will build suspense and create a sense of anticipation. But most importantly, it will put your customers in a buying state of mind.
Look beyond Black Friday
There are huge opportunities for retailers to capitalize on the Black Friday kick-off to the year’s busiest season for buying.
As the big day approaches, a little planning and preparation can put your retail business on track to succeed during the Holiday Season and set the bar for your sales events throughout the year.