Retailers are busy preparing for Black Friday. Traditionally, the day after the Thanksgiving holiday is the busiest shopping day of the year in the US. To coincide with this, retailers typically have several new products launching, as well as significant merchandising changes which result in lots of advertising running in the newspaper, on TV, radio and the web.
Around this time every year, I receive phone calls from customers requesting security systems and system components. This is an obvious reaction to the impending rush of shoppers set to walk through their stores.
Common questions I get asked on these calls are, “Do you have what I need?” and ”Can you deliver these to all of my stores next week?” My reaction is usually “Yikes!” Now, many times we can fulfill these last-minute requests, because, well, we’ve now come to anticipate receiving these calls.
But unfortunately, sometimes my answer is simply, “We’re very sorry that we cannot turnaround your request in that short of a time frame.” That’s a hard answer to give to customers. No vendor wants to disappoint their customers. Furthermore, the larger the size of the request, the longer the lead time that is needed to deliver, for our security products. This can, understandably, compound the frustration by both parties.
As a support organization for consumer electronics, our goal is to have what the client needs – when they need it. That said, how can both organizations plan in a more consistent manner moving forward?
Featured below are the steps we use to help prepare customers for “sudden projects,” like those that can occur around the time of Black Friday. Let’s:
- Conduct regular conference calls on current and future projects.
- Make sure that lead times for all part orders are published in your organization.
- Discuss any order expediting needs to ensure you’re aware of any additional shipping costs.
- Place “heads-up” calls when possible to help both parties be prepared.
It really all comes down to communication. Because we don’t have the luxury of being able to refer to a crystal ball, we must collectively communicate to ensure the best possible outcome.
Together, using these guidelines, we can mitigate the frustration that comes with the rush to get your products displayed. And in turn, we’ll be able to say that we both are truly ready for Black Friday.
Have questions about our retail security systems? Contact us today or call 1-877-477-4874.