Did You Run Out of Stock This Holiday Season?
Retailers eye the holiday season to attract more customers and boost sales. For some, the holiday season is the best time of year for sales. Don’t let bad inventory management ruin your business.
If you don’t have good inventory management, your product will run out of stock and your sales will plummet. That can prove to be a very costly mistake that can make or break your business. Don’t think that if a customer can’t find an item in stock in your online store, they will buy something else from you. That mostly never happens.
According to Harvard Business Review, overall, retailers can lose 50% of intended purchases when customers encounter stock-outs. Their research shows that when your customer can’t find the exact product they’re looking for, they will do one of these five things.
- They will look for a substitute of the same brand.
- They substitute for a different brand.
- They delay their purchase until the item’s back in stock at your store.
- They don’t buy the product.
- They buy the product at another store.
Yearly Sales or Holiday Season Sales Inventory Management
Whether it’s during the holiday season or year round sales, it is critically important to manage your inventory easily and ensure real-time availability. Besides, it is important to follow best practices if you have multiple retail storefronts (online or offline) pulling from the same stock. Unhappy retailers that you supply to may look for other suppliers and manufacturers of your product.
With an experienced inventory management and warehousing partner like Elite OPS, you will be able to forge a great working relationship between your suppliers and retailers. In turn, your customers will reward you with more sales.
A study by the GT Nexus supply chain network found that 63% of US shoppers have come across an out of stock item online. As a result a majority of these shoppers shop elsewhere to buy what they were looking for.
Best Practices for Professional Inventory Management
Here are some best practices for professional inventory management:
- Automated, real-time access to inventory stock is crucial. Support your product distributors and retailers with automation, so customers have access to the latest updated product information. When looking to outsource order fulfillment, make sure you find out how their inventory reporting software works.
- Inventory data and reporting should provide ample information of stock availability beyond just an SKU count. Make sure you can give your customers a clear picture of out-of-stock items and when stocks would be replenished. Your back end data inventory systems must either be automatically in-sync with your front end online store OR you must manually update it every single day!
- As a product supplier, include shipment notifications with expected arrival time, so retailers can correspond with their customers regarding their order arrival time or order in stock time.
A good relationship with your retailers can make lives easier for product manufacturers or suppliers. The post-holiday season is a time for retailers to assess performance of suppliers and vendors. It is the time when they identify those manufacturers who supported them best during the rush holiday season and those who did not. It paints a very clear picture for retailers of your inventory management process.
With a focus on product growth & development, it will help to work with your retailers to find out how you can offer them the best inventory management. With a professional inventory management partner, you will not run out of stock through the holiday rush season.
Elite OPS has been a leader in Shipping and Logistics for over 25 years. Contact Us to find out how we can help you Save Time and Money on Procurement as a Service, eCommerce Order Fulfillment, and Kitting and Assembly.
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