How to prepare for key eCommerce sales periods

inke packaging — March 9, 2021

Key sale periods are the best way to create excitement and incentive for your customers. Thanks to a series of online sales events, these sale periods can frequently occur throughout the year. Research has indicated that key sale periods account for over 6% of most online businesses’ yearly revenue.

This article will help you execute your most profitable sale periods to the highest standard.

Creating a calendar for key sale periods

You wouldn’t run a marathon without training all year for the main event.

It’s important to establish a well-thought-out calendar for your sale periods throughout the year. This will ensure you are meeting the many considerations a sale period demands.

Look at what your competitors are doing. You might find it necessary to mimic their sales patterns throughout the year to heighten the competition in your area of business.

Does your stock have an expiry date or lose its value? Plan to discount these products at the end of the financial year.

Look for holidays that align with the essence of your brand. For example, if you run a skincare line targeted to women, you might plan a sale period on International Women’s Day, 8th March and Valentine’s Day, 14th February, with the message of your campaign being, ‘indulge’ and ‘self-love’.

Don’t make the mistake of not running sales on the three essential sale dates for every eCommerce brand; Black Friday; 27th November, Cyber Monday; 30th November and Boxing Day; 26th December. You’ll find that everyone capitalises on these key sale dates without question.

How to prepare for sale events

Once you have established the key sale dates for the year, incorporate these dates into every aspect of your business planning.

The last thing you want to happen in the heat of a sale is not having enough stock. Look at sales records from the past three years to predict how much you’ll need to order and prepare for well ahead of time.

Your stock levels are important. However, you might not have considered other important aspects of a sale period.

Will you have enough packaging inventory, collateral material, samples and promotional assets? Have you rostered enough staff in the warehouse to get orders out to customers on time? Have you marketed the sale to your customers, so they’re aware ahead of time or do you want the sale to be a surprise? It’s also a good idea to consider how you’ll proceed when items are sent back. Do you have a return and exchange policy for sale items?

How soon to order your packaging before a big sale

Depending on how much stock you have or how essential the key sale period is, it’s a good rule to order your packaging with us at least two months ahead of a critical sale event to avoid any unforeseeable delays.

It’s always a good idea to have more than less when planning for a spike in orders. For example, did you have enough packaging ahead of online sales surges due to COVID-19 lockdowns? Consider that sometimes you’ll need to be prepared for the unknown, and this includes having healthy stock supplies and packaging ready to go.

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