Valentine’s Day is a day for expressing love for someone by showering him or her with presents and goodies. This means a lot of business and preparation for retailers. In 2017 consumers spent a total of $18.2 billion on their sweethearts. Jewelry is a popular item for Valentine’s Day and its gift sales last year were $4.45 billion, clothing sales were $2.02 billion, and flower sales were $1.99 billion. Understanding all of these numbers will help retailers prepare and complete their holiday buying for the next Valentine’s Day.
Valentine’s Day shopping is usually done within a week of the holiday, which means there is a lot of last minute shopping. This past year, sales of smart phones from February 10-12 grew 79 percent. Scrambling around last minute and not being sure of what to buy for a loved one, leads to online shopping with express delivery. There are many ways brick and mortar retailers can prepare for this and combat online shopping with buying tactics of their own.
There are several items that are always popular as gifts: jewelry, flowers, and chocolate. Retailers should stock up on these holiday staples. Buying these products ahead of time and being prepared is one thing, but with Valentine’s Day being such a popular holiday, how does one retailer make their gifts stand out from the others? A special display highlighting the holiday will lure shoppers in rather than turn them away and back to their smartphones and online orders. Having the basics as far as gift giving goes will boost sales, especially when they are front and center and easily grabbed by those last minute shoppers.
Sales are obviously going to increase around holidays, but retailers need to make sure that they are not overstocked. Review past holiday sales. Based on those numbers create a budget for holiday spending. Shoppers love the insane discounts following Valentine’s Day on anything from stuffed bears to chocolate, but it makes storeowners cringe. Having an idea of what, and how many, products will sell boosts overall sales and profit.
In addition to budgeting, retailers should have special holiday deals. When buying products to sell for Valentine’s Day, find the latest trend and build promotions around it to gain more customers and stomp out the competition. By having the latest products, a retailer becomes the go-to for gift shopping, promoting and offering a limited time deal on those products will bring even more attention to your store. Staying on top of trends and making sure shoppers are aware of your products is essential in coming out on top this holiday season.
Another approach to Valentine’s Day buying is steering clear of big gift baskets. Instead of buying pre-made baskets, retailers can create their own. Package some products together and include the price of the basket and gift-wrap. This will help move products that are not selling well on their own. By creating gift baskets, retailers can include items that they know people will like and throw in a few smaller ones that are slow moving. Bump the gift basket up a notch by allowing shoppers to pick out the products they want to be included and having employees wrap one for them in-store. This personalized gift means quicker and easier shopping for the last minute and undecided shopper.
This Valentine’s Day, focus on making sales in-store; entice procrastinating shoppers with simple and obvious presents and keep online shoppers offline by offering basic gifts that are incredibly on trend. Couples, families, friends, and those people dear to others won’t be the only ones feeling the love this season: retailers and their sales will too!