Planning Ahead for Black Friday Can Keep You “In the Black”
Last year, 212 million shoppers spent $45 billion in the four-day Black Friday shopping period, a trend upward from 2009. A struggling economy makes it difficult to predict this year’s outcome, but it is certain that shoppers will be seeking bargains. For retailers, that means increased foot traffic.
When done correctly, offering a loss leader, or a product sold at extreme discounts, can result in impulse purchases that far offset the discounts on the loss leader. Marketing studies have shown that many Black Friday customers will buy other products from stores in which they intended to visit only to buy advertised items. The increased volume of shoppers purchasing full price products makes Black Friday a money making opportunity for retailers even though they may not profit from the loss leader.
Consider these strategies when planning for a profitable loss leader:
Effectively marketing your loss leader will drive foot traffic. If customers do not realize you are offering a great value on a loss leader, they will not be motivated to come to your store. Advertise the special in advance using signage in front of your store, in check-out queues and elsewhere. Lavi Industries can help with retail signage solutions. We have unique solutions for stand-alone signage as well as opportunities for promotion within the check-out queue, which means you leverage your valuable retail store space.
Impulse purchases are the key to a profitable loss leader. That means you want the foot traffic to enter your store and spend time there. Don’t place your loss leader in the front of the store - place it in the back of the store. Set up a merchandising strategy to capture the attention of the shopper and inspire impulse purchases along the pathways.
Take advantage of your check-out line as well. Because of the loss leader, people are motivated to stand in line longer than they normally would. To keep the longer line orderly, plan to add portable retractable belt stanchions. This will make the line appear more fair and efficient, a key to reducing check-out line reneging and balking, ensuring there are fewer lost sales and better customer experiences.
The longer check-out line is a prime spot for merchandising impulse purchases – it helps a captive customer pass the time and drives total purchases up. Lavi has a full line of in-line merchandising solutions and staff ready to help you design the most effective merchandising solution for your store. When in-line merchandising strategies are combined with an electronic queuing system providing product education and promotional messaging, impulse sales increase dramatically.
It is very important to put a strict limit on the number of loss leaders a customer can purchase in a single visit. This will encourage return visits to the store if a customer wants to give the same item to many people. Failure to limit the quantity on a loss leader might also make consumers less likely to buy other items, which is the purpose of the loss leader.
With advance planning and smart merchandising, your “busiest shopping day of the year” can also be one of your most profitable days. Turn to the experts at Lavi Industries to help you strategize a comprehensive queue and promotion solution that will put your Black Friday clearly in the black. Our retail experts are ready to help at (888)285-8605.