The most important times in the retail calendar are always the promotional periods. Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Christmas, end of financial year – the list goes on. Capitalising on these events is critical for any retail business, requiring significant investment and preparation, including increased staff to assist with the higher foot traffic. However, the reward doesn’t come without challenges, and during promotional periods, they are largely inventory related.
It’s no coincidence that many functions and services like click and collect have to be turned off during these times; they just become too difficult to manage. Foot traffic is high and the pressure is on. For these reasons, many customers choose to stay away from stores all together to avoid the hectic environment, especially if they don’t know whether the items they’re after are actually in stock.
Normally, 25% of customers won’t visit a store if they don’t know whether the item they’re after is available. During promotional periods, this number rises significantly. The last thing retailers want during a promotional period is for a big chunk of customers to turn to competitors including Amazon because they don’t want to risk going down to a store only to be disappointed if what they want is sold out. With Black Friday and Christmas fast approaching, it’s time to do something about this!
Stock visibility usage increases by 500% during promotional periods. When items are moving quicker than ever, a stock visibility solution not only provides real time information for customers to see what’s in store, it also takes the pressure off in store and customer service staff who would otherwise be constantly answering phone calls about stock availability. This frees them up to focus on selling!
Many retailers have stock integrity issues and find it difficult to keep track of their stock movements, leading them to opt against setting up a feature showing real time stock availability. But do not fear! Even though retailers don’t know the exact number of items in store, some stock visibility technologies have built-in flexibility to cater for this issue and help increase sales and reduce transfer costs especially during these critical promotional periods.
The time has come for all omni-channel retailers to start capitalising on promotional periods by enabling a stock availability solution on their e-store to drive foot traffic to the right stores, where the product is in stock.