5 Mistakes Retailers Can’t Afford to Make

With so much to do each day to run your business it could be easy to overlook critical details that make all the difference to your bottom line.  Below are 5 hot points to avoid along with solutions to help you resolve these frequent challenges.  

Mistake #1:

Stock too much of one item and your money is tied up.

This is the challenge you face every day. With so much money invested in your inventory, it’s essential that you stay on top of it. That means that your inventory figures need to be constantly updated. Relying on a cash register or paper-based transactions does not automatically update your inventory. Retailing requires that inventory tracking occurs in real-time and is effortless and automatic.

 Mistake #2:

Run out of stock and you’ve missed an opportunity to make a sale.

Few things hurt sales, or frustrate customers, more than failing to stock an item consumer’s want. A good inventory management system should enable you to always know what inventory you have on hand, without conducting a physical count. It should use a bar code scanner to scan items when ringing up sales or entering new inventory – automatically adjusting inventory totals as you sell items and automatically notifying you when items are out of stock.

 Mistake #3:

Making inventory decisions by the seat of your pants.

Imagine being able to spot trends in sales, profits, liquidity and assets as well as optimal operating hours and profit margins. Oh, and of course track inventory with easy-to-access data so you can act quickly on new products or eliminate poorly performing products.

Mistake #4:

Ignoring shrinkage and failing to secure against theft.

Shrinkage is all merchandise that is taken out of stock without being paid for. Studies consistently show more people will steal if they think they can get away with it. You might not even realize that theft, by employee or customer, is actually going on in your store.

 Mistake #5:

Not making lemonade when you have lemons!

Pricing items correctly and knowing when to offer discounts is key to successfully managing and growing your business. You should be able to identify the most “saleable” items, which are typically your most price sensitive (generally the 20% of your inventory that moves the fastest), and price them competitively.

You can then recognize the “slow movers” from the remaining bulk of your inventory, which are typically your most non-price sensitive items, and raise the margins. By selling the “slow movers” early in the season, when items are more saleable at higher prices, you will minimize clearance markdowns at the end-of season.

Reporting is critical to understanding and managing your inventory. QuickBooks Point of Sale allows retailers to keep track of critical information and avoid costly mistakes and Merchant Solutions  Authority is focused on these types of business solutions for retailers.

Merchant Solutions Authority is a proven and trusted advisor to retailers across the country.  MSA specializes in business tools and methodologies for independent retailers – single store operations; small to medium sized chains.

Why they are different: Merchant Solutions Authority has over 50+ years of experience in independent and specialty retail – they know your passion and understand your business. MSA uniquely combines their retail and product experience with business expertise to simplify your operations and enhance your profitability.

Let them help you avoid costly mistakes.

For more information on Merchant Solutions Authority please visit their website:

MerchantSolutionsAuthority.com

 

Spring Cleaning for Small Business-Share Your Ideas @ #SMBSpringClean

Join The Twitter Chat: Follow #SMBSpringClean

#SBSCleaning

Become a part of the conversation to find out what other small business owners just like you are doing this spring to renew their companies. Get more good ideas for spring cleaning by joining us Thursday, April 11, 2013 at 8 p.m. EST for a live Twitter chat presented by FedEx Office.

We hope you’ll take the time to participate and pose any questions you may have about revitalizing your business. If you have any tips to offer other small business owners about spring cleaning or how to bring in new ideas and innovation, we’d love for you to join us.  Be sure to follow @FedExOffice too.

Twitter Chat Details

Be sure to join us for this live Twitter chat event:

TOPIC: Spring clean your SMB: Get organized, bring in fresh ideas, shake things up.

DATE: Thursday, April 11, 2013

TIME: 8 pm EST (New York time)

LOCATION: Twitter.com: Just follow the hashtag #SMBSpringClean to participate.

Gift & Home Trade Market-Experience the Excitement and Energy (without actually being there)

The winter markets have just ended but the excitement continues with great product introductions and promotions from gift and home vendors.  Enjoy the feeling of the world’s largest marketplace for gift and home products.   Carry on the excitement by contacting one or more of the Ivystone or Simblist sales reps in your area to get more product details!

 

 

iPad Guide – Getting the Most Out of Your Tablet

If you are reading this you either already own an iPad or are seriously thinking about buying one soon.  This functional up to date guide will help you get more use from your tablet and effectively manage your device to keep it organized.

iPad: A Magical and Revolutionary Guide provides tips and tricks along with a list of top 40 free app selections.

Even experienced users are sure to find some thing they were not aware of plus new apps to add to your iPad collection.

From copying, pasting, loading videos, battery saving hints and using your iPad as a remote control, there is something for everyone in this guide…..enjoy!

iPad:_A  Magical_&_Revolutionary_Guide

Top 10 Most Popular Stories of the Week

With so much information to choose from and so many options for staying in the know, I thought it would be useful to post The Top 10 Most Popular Stories of the week according to Fast Company.

There is absolutely something here for everyone.  Hope you discover some amazing tidbits that make you think and help you to jump start engaging conversations.

Until next week…..enjoy!