Stock management. Important thing. Actually doing the stock take is a bit back breaking. Lots of boxes, lots of lists, lots of counting. I could do with an abacus. But it is vital to make sure my inventory is correct – most particularly for my website where delays can mean a disappointing customer experience which is NOT what Rosy Rosie is about.
Equally importantly, I have been analysing what is selling well, so that I can make sure I have enough stock of popular items.
But it isn’t as simple as just assuming what sold well last week provides a perfect sales projection. There is a lot of ‘seasonality’ in Rosy Rosie products, so I look at a rolling calendar of sales, make judgements on the types of events I am planning to attend and pay attention to customer feedback, in a slightly precarious balancing act of decision making!
Plus because a number of our suppliers are artisans and/or small businesses themselves, you can’t just phone up and have stuff delivered the next day. For these suppliers our products are made to order, so I have to plan relatively long lead times so they have the time they need to produce quality products. Equally, they need to know how much business you are going to place with them so they can manage their business successfully. That’s relationships.
Finally there is cash flow. I can’t go ‘shopping’ until I’ve done some selling so I have to get out and about to the right events, make some money and then manage my budgets so I can buy enough of the best sellers to generate income to invest back into the business – hopefully in new, exciting new ranges.
Picking new ranges. Well that’s a whole other blog!