With Christmas less than a week away, 20 percent of shoppers have yet to begin shopping. And, millions still have a substantial number of names to check off their lists.
The average person has completed 64.7 percent of her holiday shopping, according to a National Retail Federation survey conducted this week.
Hot damn! Keep your shelves stocked. The survey found that 44.5 million people have not started holiday shopping. Twenty-four percent of men have yet to buy their first gift, and 24 percent of 18- to 34-year-olds also have not begun to shop. One in three shoppers (30.1 percent) are finished.
These figures mean that this will be a big (HUGE?) weekend for retailers. Make sure your employees are ready with gift ideas, that they greet customers when they come in the door and check on them while they shop. Quick, plan a promotion for this weekend: A free gift with purchase, perhaps. A two-for-one sale. Markdowns on a particular category of merchandise. Cookies and coffee served in your store. Get creative.
Retail consultant Barbara Crowhurst suggests:
- Make sure your signs are clear and that you have plenty throughout your store
- Reduce all slow-moving merchandise to 20-percent off. “Better to sell at this time for that discount than have to sell at 50 percent or more after Christmas,” she says.
- Keep your staff informed of daily sales targets. Make sure they know about promotions.
- Be on the sales floor more yourself.
- Add-on sales: Make sure your employees are thinking about this. Role play with them to get help them learn how to suggest additional products.
Good luck. May your weekend be merry and bright.