In the Northern Hemisphere, Jun, July and August are the sweltering summer months. This means hot weather, blue skies, long days and swimming. The last things on anyone’s mind are winter jackets, snowy days and holiday shopping. However, for many retailers, the holiday season is exactly what’s on their mind in summer.
Retailers can use summer to prepare for the not-so-distant holiday season. There are many things retailers can do to set themselves up to have a more successful holiday retail period. Although it may seem odd to be harnessing summer time to prepare for holidays, it will certainly pay off.
Organise your inventory stock
If you want to be fully prepared for the season ahead, it’s best to start fresh. This means a good clean out of your inventory stock is necessary. By going through old inventory stock, you can see what items didn’t sell and what stock you need to get rid of. There are many ways to get rid of excess inventory.
With an organised stock room, you can be more efficient with your warehouse processes. When the busy season arrives, operations will be more streamlined. If your staff helps with the organisation of the warehouse this can be extremely beneficial. Not only do they know where goods are stored, but they might take pride in a tidy warehouse as they helped clean it.
Prepare your website and digital media
Use the summer time to revamp your website, making sure it is user-friendly and intuitive. You want the buying process to be seamless as it makes it easier for customers to buy from you. Bring in specialists who can make sure your website functions well.
Compare your website to competitors and see what they are doing better. Since online shopping may have some lulls around this time of year, it’s good to do website maintenance and improve your current site.
If you are creating social media content, draft weeks or months of content in advance. You can create Facebook posts, write blogs or take photos that you can use later. This takes some of the pressure off to create this content daily or weekly. If you have extra content stored, you can release it strategically when it suits your company. This also allows you to focus on other issues when the busy season gets closer.
Review your employees
When times are slower over summer, take the chance to catch up with your employees through a formal review process or a casual conversation. It is important to see how they are doing with their roles and if they are struggling with any components of their job description.
This is also an opportunity to see if some employees are ready for the next challenge. Will they welcome a promotion or more responsibility? If some employees are ready to take on more, this is the prime time to train them. Since times are quieter you can train them before the busy season.