As anyone who works in retail knows, by the time Christmas hits the shops, the buying team will have moved on to summer and may even be planning for Christmas 2016 and beyond.
It’s a daunting prospect for many start-up producers when they venture into retail but it’s crucial to consider Christmas buying cycles when developing your range and new products.
Here are my three top tips:
1. Understand your customers’ buying cycles – know how far ahead they work and work to their schedules.
2. Don’t wait for your customers to ask you what you have, offer them products that you have specifically chosen with them in mind – things that will fit for their customer profile, pricing and that offer something new in their range. Do your homework first and make sure you know what they currently have, the trends and the margins they operate to.
3. Everyone likes an exclusive – can you personalise your offer for a retailer? This does not mean producing a bespoke product but perhaps a unique pack size, a twin pack or similar that gives them something specific to their store.
What are your experiences? Drop them in the comments box below.
Food industry expert Jane Milton has been in the business for more than 30 years and has the inside track on all things food!
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