Wow, it’s August already! It seems like only yesterday we were writing about how to manage inventory for the summer. In actuality, that article appeared on May 5th, a whole three months ago. In this business, time flies. As the dog days of summer are upon us, it isn’t too early to start taking a look at the future, and preparing your store for autumn.
One demographic that often gets missed in the convenience store world is the college crowd. Often looked over due to misnomers about a “lack of disposable income,” students are large contributors to the success of convenience stores within proximity to their dorms and apartments.
Category management, or at least the form in which we see it today, has been developed quite recently. If we look at just 10-15 years ago, we find that convenience stores would have brands and companies vying for the best product placement and the best promotion spots, in order to generate sales and glean the best profits.
A product, be it of any variety, has a certain life cycle, which begins when it is newly launched into the market, and ends when it finally loses the majority of its demand among the customers. The very final stage in the life cycle is when the product is no longer in as much demand as it was when it was experiencing a surge in popularity and when it is on the verge of becoming a liability for the company that produces and stocks it.
The life cycle of a product denotes the various stages through which the product goes, during its span on the market. This applies to both consumer products as well as commercial ones. In its essence, a product life cycle is a business management method, which seeks to define all the phases of a product’s life.
A 2014 study by Ehrenberg-Bass Institute of Marketing Science confirms the average consumer spends a mere 13 seconds making a purchasing decision in-store. Consumers tend to stick to products they know without giving a second thought to whether it’s what they truly desire, or if they’re simply purchasing out of familiarity.
The margin of error present for small businesses is very small. The constraint of a tight budget means that even the slightest of discrepancies can leave the planning in tatters. This is why businesses have to use as much protection as they can to achieve profitability. The profitability and performance of a business can be measured and compared through the use of different accounting ratios.
In the retail landscape, inventory is one of the most important elements of a business, and you need to have precise information about its status to be able to better cater to your customers’ needs. Since inventory affects several important business processes and decisions, efficient inventory management is critical for success.
When managing a convenience store, you’ll have to deal with one of the cardinal sins of the grab-and-go industry: out of stocks. Running out of a certain product, especially one in high demand, can be disastrous to your reputation as well as your wallet.