in-season management


When it comes to physical stores…physics matters. What goes in must come out!

Putting in the right amount of product in the first place is the starting point to making sure that this equation works but it’s still only really the starting point.

So on to the “what comes out” part of the conundrum. There’s only three ways your product is going to leave the store – bought by the customer, removed by the retailer or stolen. Let’s assume that you have the third option covered, and that you want to absolutely minimise the second scenario…shhhh don’t tell everyone but retailers removing product from stores is expensive and usually a sign of bad initial space planning!


Which leads us onto the ideal – the customer buys everything. Job done!

However, selling out product is a little more complicated than that and involves one of the holy grails of retail – margin, the reduction of it, and leads on to the delicate area of in-season management.

Unfortunately, because of those picky, over fussy customers not everything sells as well as we would like. In which case it’s worth remembering that margin is worth nothing until someone puts their hand in their pocket and pays. In deed margin is theoretical for most of the lifecycle of any product.

And so the need for in-season management -the “Russian Roulette” of retail, often shrouded in sales director secrecy, discussed in private rooms by solemn men with poker faces – and those are just the successful retailers!

It’s role, and of those involved in it such as merchandisers, commercial and sales managers, to turn the theoretical margin into the reality of hard cash even if the pile of pennies is not quite as high as everyone had originally hoped. In other words strategic and calculated margin reduction.


But behind this process is fear and one of the biggest reasons for inertia in retail – “the glazed eyes of the margin gazer!”

Giving up margin for sales it not easy but it is part of retail life. Therefore transforming the mind-set and finally freeing up the action of the markdown process is a landmark for any retail business.

It is also worth remembering that sales are not always less than expected, and positive reactions are required – the replenishment of good sellers, the refreshing of attractive displays and the renewing of styles that are selling like hotcakes.

Positive, or negative they are all reactions to sales patterns…and that is in-season management.


At VM-unleashed we transform in stages your mentality, your measurement, your monitoring and your reactions to survive and flourish in the regular cut-and-thrust of retail life.


So now, what about you?

Is your business startled into inaction by the bright lights of margin-gazing?

Are you in need of in-season management transformation?




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