By Jim Lewis, CEO Enhanced Retail Solutions LLC
While lines for covid tests may be longer than lines at cash registers right now, there is still a lot to be thankful for. In the face of adversity, retailers upped their game big time. That lead to more innovation- especially in the delivery arena. Consumers also adapted- changing their shopping habits and expectations.
Last year I recommended clients plan 2021 based on 2019 data and omit 2020. The truth is there was a lot to learn from 2020 data. And 2021 data will have its own lessons. There is value in all the data. Covid seems to be with us for the long haul, so data from this disruptive period may be more valuable than I thought. The key is taking good notes. My most recommended gift this year- a journal.
I started taking daily business notes about 25 years ago when I was an Assistant Buyer. My Buyer recommended I start recapping every day in a journal. Inevitably something would come up down the road and I would be able to get the answers in that journal. That was great advice (thanks Walt, wherever you are)! From meetings with suppliers to top sellers or dogs, they were all documented- by hand- every day. I still do it and refer to it constantly.
Both retailers and suppliers constantly ask about item performance. Was it better than last year, or last week? Why? Notes can be a great companion to your reporting repertoire. Why did we get the performance we did? We have so many good reasons to blame on bad performance this year- a pandemic! Supply chain issues! And then there’s the perennial favorite- the weather!
My wish for 2022 is that it wreaks of sanity. I know, I’m dreaming. When the “drop the mop” item is an at-home Covid test I’m not sure my wish will come true. Regardless, have a wonderful holiday and stay safe.
For more information about ERS, and how we can help you turn inventory faster, forecast more accurately and deepen visibility to sales, contact us.