In order to manage demand during the busiest Black Friday and Christmas shopping season, merchants need the most precise supply chain data from consumers who are watching every penny they spend.

Retailers will be better able to respond to changes in customer demand – and safeguard margins – in the following ways with the use of accurate, readily available supply chain data.

What improvements can be made?

A sudden increase in demand: are you prepared? Is your system set up to handle a delay from one of your major suppliers? By examining the accuracy of their inventory management, retailers can gain the upper hand. In addition to tracking freight status, our custom supply chain software, Vector, combines stock data from all sales channels, numerous warehouses, and order fulfilment locations.
Retailers can rapidly assess where improvements need to be made – before peak – with a complete, integrated snapshot of how a supply chain is doing right now.

The control tower view

After the move to internet buying during the epidemic, last year saw the first genuinely multichannel high. However, the transformation is permanent, and merchants must have a control tower view to effectively manage all of their channels. Retailers can quickly and profitably decide to move merchandise from their physical stores to an online warehouse if that is where demand is higher by continuously reviewing and acting on data from each channel.

Another important aspect of planning for peak is including contingencies, and having a clear picture of your stock inventories is crucial for this as well. One strategy is to plan localised stock levels for the short term, and good inventory forecasting can guarantee that reordering occurs at the appropriate moment, to shorten replenishment lead times without tying up too much cash in stock.

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