With the hustle of spring around the corner, there is still time to take stock of more than just your inventory. Take some time to review your reporting and make plans on improving your operations before the springtime rush arrives.
“The now $36.9-billion dollar DIY yard and garden industry is growing at a slow and steady rate, led by millennials and by growth in food gardening,” - Ian Baldwin
As the Lawn and Garden industry continues to experience a steady rise, successful owners and managers like you need to keep their operations in check as they grow with this market. Here are a few next steps to help you make the most of your off-season.
Step 1: Review Your Reporting
The first step seems to always be reviewing your data, and with good reason. With the right reporting, you can paint an accurate picture of the relationships between your inventory and your purchase reports. Factor this in with the sales history and see how the basic principles of supply and demand are impacting your business.
Now to find the room for your improvement:
- How did you inventory management system work when it was busy?
- Did it give you the quick insights to stay competitive on the fly?
- Was your POS setup for both employee and customer success?
- Would an option such as a mobile POS have made the process more effective?
- Was customer follow up easy to do?
- Were you able to effortlessly alert clients when items were back in stock?
“It’s [Counterpoint] helped us better manage our inventory because now we can track our sales by item, we can track all of our waste, and it’s made us better buyers as a result” - Brian Harting, Marketing Assistant, Meadows Farms
Also look at the human resource area of your business operations.
- How did your employees do?
- How was your retention?
- Did you set them up for success?
When looking at reporting, it can be hard to remember the human equation beyond the customer. The right operational structure for your business must engage, excite and motivate both the customer and your employees for overall growth.
Step 2: Envision Your Transformation
Now that you’ve analyzed your reports, identified areas for improvement and taken a look at your staffing, it’s time to start envisioning your store transformation.
- What do you want to change?
- What promotions are you planning?
- Are your operations set up for your success?
Though store transformation and CX marking can seem daunting, beginning to address it slowly in your off-season can be a great way to ease into this quickly growing journey. As you plan your spring and summer inventory, take a moment to envision what you’d like your store's journey to look like. Other than the big items you know you’ll need in stock, have you thought about the buyer's journey through your store?
- What do you see on the endcaps, which items are outside and which come in?
- What do they see as they are checking out?
- Is the checkout stationary, or are you bringing it outside to them?
Walk through your store as you are envisioning the journey. As you get to the checkout stop and switch roles; how seamless is your employees’ experience? Are your tools easy for them to use and adaptable to meet the customer's needs?
This may seem like a lot to process, but by asking these questions you are building the blueprint for the next season’s success.
Step 3: Modernize Your Operations
Now that you have your data and your blueprint, you need to see what aspects of your operations need adjustment.
- Is your POS system up to date?
- Does your inventory control help you keep up and reorder with things are busy?
- Do you need more engaging employee experiences to enable them to be successful with your customers?
If you’re answering ‘No’ to any of the above it’s time to get the help you need.
“Counterpoint has very much helped us streamline our checkout process… now everything is done by a handheld device and the computer itself. All the prices are right there computerized thanks to Counterpoint. Very streamlined.” – Meadows Farms
Let’s Get Started
Maybe you already have a system that’s working for you and if so, great! Our business is here to help businesses like yours succeed. But if you’re not happy with your operations, or maybe you just need help getting to next level, our team can help. Reach out to us or watch a demo to see some of the features we have to offer. If you want to hear first-hand about our products, listen to what Meadows Farms has to say about their experience with NCR Counterpoint, or read Altum's case study.
It’s all about your success. Spring may be coming, but you have time! Let’s get started today.