With the impending easing of lockdown rules across the UK, lots of retail businesses are starting to think about how to get back to some semblance of normality as shoppers are once again allowed to get out and wield their spending power. Indeed, many retailers will now be relying on shoppers wanting to break the chains of lockdown and start spending once again to ensure survival.
After months and months of stock sitting idle, now is the ultimate time to understand what you’ve got to sell and how much you need to make the most of demand. When you factor in potential lingering delays in stock movement due to Brexit and that old chestnut, a global pandemic, it’s also a time to make clear, concise and early decisions on procurement.
The importance of effective stocktaking has never been higher on the agenda, here’s how it can help your business over the coming months:
Whilst we are in somewhat uncharted waters, gleaning a good understanding of customer behaviour and trends in selling during past years or times of crisis can help you better plan for the other side of Lockdown in 2021.
During the last 12 months we’ve seen a big shift in consumer trends away from ‘stuff’ and towards self-improvement or productivity – think gym equipment for just one very popular example! Once people are released from their homes, are we likely to see this move the other way? Will consumers now make a beeline for those purchases they’ve been holding off on? Will the impulse of the high street and being able to handle, feel and see goods in person before making a decision make an impact? Using a professional stock taking service will help you get to grips with patterns and potential trends in your sector to plan ahead and make the most of the sales opportunity in front of you.
Dealing with Stock Loss
Retailers dealing in perishable products are likely to have had an incredibly unsettling 12 months watching their stock become unsellable. For other retailers, do you know where your stock is currently sitting? And are you confident that what was there before is what you currently have to work with?
There are many things that can contribute to stock loss in the retail sector – human error, accidental damage, theft, criminal activity or in a pandemic, items becoming simply unsellable after a certain period of time. Whilst of course, in store theft is undoubtedly down, increased pressure on staff – both professionally and financially can have an impact on your stock levels. Understanding where your stock has gone can help you mitigate against such losses as you head into a potentially incredibly busy period.
Combining Online with In Person
Online retail is an attractive prospect for many at the moment; it’s not just that millions of people are spending more time on tablets, phones and computers at home. When combined with the fact you don’t have the business rates, rent and other expenditure associated with a physical presence, it’s easy to understand why many a business has converted their operations to an online model.
It does bring with it many teething problems, one of which is stock management. The world of the internet, driven by companies such as Amazon comes with sky-high expectation – goods are ordered in the evening and expected on the doorstep by morning. To deliver such service it’s vital that there’s a firm hand on the stock level tiller. This has never been more true as we start to reopen the high street over the coming months; are you ready to integrate a physical store with your booming website? To do so stock management in both is vital and we help many of our clients ensure they’re able to balance stores with online shopping effectively.
Talk to us about getting the most out of your stocktaking – visit https://www.abacusvaluers.co.uk/our-stocktaking-services or call the team on 01637 874609.