When you’re running a pro shop, one of the main challenges is managing stock.
During the height of the season, it’s all too easy to get distracted and, yet, it’s the most important time to be ahead of the game.
Balancing supply with the demands of your golfers is crucial to success. When preparing for meetings with brand representatives, looking around at a shop full of stock isn’t the best way to judge what you should be committing to in 2024. While it’s easy to decide to just buy less – and sometimes that’s the right thing to do – if you don’t have enough ‘fuel’ in the engine next year, your business won’t be able to grow.
Here, we look at the techniques to streamline inventory and get the balance right.
Not only does excess stock tie up valuable capital and take up precious space, but it will also hit your bottom line. Hard.
Your ePos software is the first step towards efficient stock control: providing a real-time view of stock levels across your categories and brands, as well as producing user-friendly reports to identify slow-moving items.
Before the issue of dead stock raises its head, be proactive and monitor stock performance regularly. You want sufficient stock to fulfil the best-performing items and maintain customer satisfaction, as well as a plan to deal with the less popular products.
Regularly checking your turnover and stock turn is essential. The new Xpert app, due to be released by Xpos this Autumn, has been built to give you an up-to-the-minute picture of shop performance.
In the app’s dashboard, year on year turnover comparisons provide a benchmark to help shop managers understand whether performance is up or down, and react quickly to unexpected nasties.
Retailers using Xpos V2 can currently check the same data in the online Hub.
Before the issue of dead stock raises its head, be proactive and monitor stock performance regularly
Keep a close eye on stock turn, which is the rate at which your products turnover and sell. Every industry has an ‘ideal’ stock turn number and UK golf retailers should be aiming for a stock turn of more than three. If it’s less than this, you’ll need to dig deeper to locate your slow turning items. The Stock Turn report in Xpos is an ideal go-to.
It’s perfectly normal for there to be some sort of issue in the business – be it turnover, margin or stock - and it’s essential not to panic. You are not alone. The key is to react and do something about it.
The stats are a quick way to help you understand any issues you have, and bringing the team on board will help to address them quickly. If everyone understands the weaknesses, you can come together to form a plan of attack.
Many managers use incentives, such as commission schemes, which should motivate the team to sell more and think proactively about upselling at point of sale.
Once you’ve given the shop a fresh look and positioned slow-moving items to prominent places, think about incentives and promotions to encourage sales.
Every industry has an ‘ideal’ stock turn number and UK golf retailers should be aiming for a stock turn of more than three
Discounting and bundling are all techniques to move products off the shelves and usually spark more sales from word-of-mouth referrals.
At this time of year, discounts don’t need to be large – just focused. Where you have had stock for more than a year, look for opportunities to sell those products away from the shop where a clearance sale could distract customers from buying your newer items.
It may be the case that your shop assistants often prefer to sell hardware, because this is usually where their passion lies. However, it’s crucial to transition that emotion to other areas, such as shoes and clothing, which generate a large percentage of your overall profit.
Finally, when buying for 2024, consider reducing the number of brands you work with. These are big decisions that require a deep breath and injection of confidence. Discuss with the team which brands you think you can all sell well and check which ones deliver the best margin.
Effective stock management enables you to optimise profit and maintain a competitive edge. By implementing regular habits that include stocktaking, analysing sales and performance data, and working as a team to encourage sales, you’ll be able to overcome excess stock issues and, ultimately, thrive in today’s competitive retail landscape.
The Xpert app will be available to retailers upgrading to the new Xpos cloud software and opting for the Stellar package. For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org or visit https://bit.ly/ChoseCloud