Todds Terrace, St. George. Barbados
Digital Marketing

Promote Quality at Christmas Time!

“Should we put out our finest items, or just try to get rid of overstock by year-end?” Every year retailers must be ready to meet the demands of the holiday season, and every year brings a new challenge for businesses as customers expect high-quality products at competitive prices. Quality items not only draw in customers, but they also keep them coming back for more. As you decide which items to display and promote in store and digitally (on your website and social media), here is some advice.

FOCUS ON QUALITY 

As tempting as it is to take advantage of this high traffic to sell backed-up stock, you don’t want shoppers leaving disappointed because they couldn’t find anything they liked. Instead, try offering fewer but higher-quality products that are sure to please everyone who visits this holiday season. Offering quality products will also help build trust with customers and encourage them to return again and again! It should go without saying that whatever items you choose to sell should meet certain standards of quality. 

WHAT IS A QUALITY PRODUCT?

 Understand what customers consider when evaluating a product’s quality. Product performance, appearance, and customer service are key to improving your offerings and providing great value to your customers. By taking these factors into consideration, you can ensure that your products will be seen as high-quality by potential buyers.

a.     Product Performance 

The most important factor in determining product quality is performance. Does the product perform as promised? Is it reliable and durable? Does it meet customer expectations? If the answer is yes, then the product has a good chance of being seen as high-quality. But if the answer is no, then you may have an issue with customer satisfaction and loyalty. 

b.    Product Appearance 

The look and feel of a product can also influence its perceived quality. Is the packaging attractive? Are there any design flaws or missing features? Are there any blemishes or other visible defects? If so, customers may perceive the product as low-quality even if its performance meets their expectations. 

c.     Focus on Quality Customer Service 

Finally, don’t forget about providing top-notch customer service. Make sure all employees are well-trained and knowledgeable about the products being sold to provide accurate information and guidance when needed. Focus on providing quick responses to customer inquiries or complaints so that customers know their concerns are being taken seriously and addressed promptly. Does your business offer refunds or exchanges if necessary? Good customer service can go a long way in making sure customers view your products as high-quality. Your products are as ‘high quality’ as you are!

OTHER THINGS TO CONSIDER:

  •  Be Selective with Suppliers & Brands

Research brands or individual manufacturers to ensure they are producing quality goods and not cutting corners by using cheap materials or inferior craftsmanship. Make sure your suppliers are reliable and have a good track record. Compare different suppliers to identify the ones who align with your business goals and objectives. Talk to other retailers in the industry and ask for their recommendations as well. The more informed decisions you make about where to purchase supplies from, the better chance you’ll have at providing customers with top-notch products. It’s also important to establish a good relationship with your suppliers so that they feel comfortable working with you and can provide any advice or assistance when needed.  

  • Know your ‘Hero Products’

Look back at sales data from previous years; what sold well? What didn’t? Use that information as a guide for stocking up on certain items this season so that you know exactly what will be most successful for your business this holiday season. Catherine Erdly, a Contributor featured on Forbes

“Know your heroes – your best sellers, your most giftable products and remember the 80/20 rule – 80% of sales are likely to be coming from 20% of products. Once retailers know their hero products they should plan around them – from stock levels to social media content – hero products should take centre stage.”        

  • Consider Customer Needs 

Although it might be tempting to fill your shelves with what is trending now, it is important to think about what your customers’ needs are also. What type of gift would make their holiday season more special? Is there a particular item that solves a problem for them? Or perhaps an item that can save them money in the long term? When selecting products for Christmas, keep in mind what might make life easier or more enjoyable for your customers. 

“Our brands — Nike, Converse, Jordan Brand and Hurley — are loved by customers all over the world. But we never take that for granted; we know that every day we have to earn their trust — by serving them completely and adding real value to their lives through products and experiences.”  Mark Parker CEO, Nike

  • Customer Satisfaction 

Don’t underestimate the importance of customer satisfaction. Customers want value for their money—and if they spend their hard-earned cash on something that turns out not to be up to standard then you can bet, they’ll be unhappy! As such, it pays off in the long run for retail businesses to invest in higher-grade goods to maintain customer satisfaction levels over time—especially during important periods like Christmas when sales figures can make or break a business’s success for the coming year! 

  • Consider Word-of-Mouth

Word-of-mouth is a very important advertising tool for your Christmas items. Particularly in smaller Caribbean nations like Barbados, where word-of-mouth can make or break your sales. People talk! So, when a customer perceives that your product is sub-standard and did not meet their expectations, they profusely share their disappointment with all that will listen. Conversely, they will sing the praises of a high quality, value for money purchase. Statistics show that 90% of customers will share a bad experience while 30% will share a good one.

  • Customer Loyalty 

Selling quality items also helps increase customer loyalty. When customers have a positive experience with an item from your shop, there’s a good chance they’ll return later down the line when they need something else—because they know you stock reliable goods that won’t let them down in terms of performance or longevity. If you want to encourage repeat visits throughout the year (not just at Christmas) then stocking quality items is essential and of course, building good relationships. Calling your customer by name confirms their importance to you. 

“Retail is a customer business. You’re trying to take care of the customer—solve something for the customer. And there’s no way to learn that in the classroom or in the corner office, or away from the customer. You’ve got to be in front of the customer. “ Erik Nordstrom, President, Nordstrom Direct 

  • Offer Unique Items 

It’s important to think outside the box and offer unique items that customers won’t be able to find elsewhere. This will help differentiate you from other stores in the area and give customers an incentive to shop at your store instead of somewhere else. Offering unique items also gives customers something special they can’t find anywhere else—which makes them feel like they’re getting something special when shopping at your store. 

  • Keep Your Store Stocked During Peak Times
  • It’s important to prepare for peak times throughout the holiday season as well; when shopping is at its highest volume, it’s essential that you have enough inventory on hand so as not to miss out on potential sales. To do this, monitor sales patterns from last year (or other busy times of the year) and plan accordingly. Make sure you have enough stock on hand before peak times so that customers always have access to the items they need or want—especially if those items become difficult or impossible to find closer to Christmas Day. 
  • Be Ready for The Christmas Rush 

Finally, don’t forget about making sure your store is prepared for customers who come into your store looking for last-minute gifts and deals! Be sure to staff up during this time and bring in additional staff if needed; having more people available can help reduce wait times and improve customer service levels throughout the busy period leading up until Christmas Day. Make sure all of your staff understand their roles and responsibilities so everyone can work together efficiently; when dealing with a rush of customers, having a clear plan makes all the difference!                                                                                                           

The holidays are an incredibly exciting—and stressful—time of year for retailers! Selling quality items during the Christmas season is a great way to set yourself apart from other retailers in today’s competitive market. By starting early and being mindful of trends, selecting reliable suppliers, and using past sales data as a guide, businesses can make sure they’re stocking only high-quality items that will be appealing to their customer base this holiday season!

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Reviewed by 1 user

  • Great information

    • 1 year ago

    Great information, companies should take this into consideration. Smiling and saying thanks that’s fine, but running a business is so much more. I particularly like the info on training. There are so many companies who do not train their staff on their products or how customers are to be treated.
    You can have the best products but if you fall down on training that can break you. Word of mouth can be good or can be bad for your company.
    I give this article a 5 star.

      • 1 year ago

      Thank you so very much Cice! We appreciate your comments and rating.
      All the very best to you and yours in 2023!
      Keep reading and sharing 🙂

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