Whether sales are flying in online and in store, or you're just getting started, good data is essential for growing your profits and making sure your business is sustainable.

It's impossible to pay attention to all the data that a business generates, moreover, a lot of it won't be meaningful and have a useful purpose. So what data do you need and where can you get it?

We've worked really closely with retailers, learning about what information successful business owners need in order to make the smart decisions that lead to their success.

All that experience boils down to a simple retail philosophy.

When your stock has a season, there is a prime window for selling, when demand is high. As a season draws to a close, demand declines as excitement grows about the next season stock.

The margin a product achieves changes over the course of the season, so it's important to look at your average achieved margin, by brand or department, for that season.

If a product achieves a 40% margin when you first get it at the beginning of the season, that's great! But if you've then got to discount a big chunk of that stock because you've still got it at sale time, your average achieved margin could actually be more like 25%.

Keeping a close eye on your Weeks Cover means you're less likely to need to have a big chunk of stock left at sale time. Less stock leftover to discount means a higher average achieved margin for the season as a whole, and more profit for you to invest next season

Weeks Cover

Based on past sales performance, how many weeks it will take
you to sell through all of your stock.

Example:

26 weeks cover means you have enough stock to cover expected sales for the next 26 weeks.

Achieved Margin

Your actual sell price minus the cost price. This changes as you adjust your sell price, so it's important to look at the average achieved margin of a brand or department, by season.

Example:

You buy a jacket for £60 and sell it for £100, your achieved margin is 40%. As you adjust sell prices through the season - your achieved margin also changes, so you look at the average.

Quick and simple retail advice

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Related to this article ...

Cate B, Nov 2019. Get more out of Ecommerce

Cate B, Oct 2019. Mobile Friendly Ecommerce

Cate B, July 2019. Boost Click & Collect Sales

Cate B, Apr 2019. Simple Ecommerce Checklist for Independent Retailers

Grant H, Sept 2018. The Modern Day Customer Journey

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