The decisions you make during your peak season planning sessions are among the most important ones you make all year. Besides impacting significant amounts of your annual revenue, they also set your company up for success in the months ahead.
But after all the changes that have happened since the start of the pandemic, how exactly are you supposed to prepare for the retail peak season? That’s the million-dollar question.
As you start planning for peak season 2022, we’ve put together a peak preparation series featuring the top three factors you need to take into consideration:
It goes without saying that you need to start your peak planning sessions by observing consumer behavior and identifying trends in the market. This includes pinpointing the channels your customers spend their time on and identifying their preferred devices and fulfillment methods.
At the same time, you need to know when your customers plan on doing the bulk of their holiday shopping and what they expect from your customer experience this year.
By digging into current trends and looking back at the 2021 peak season for reference, you can get a solid idea of what your customers are expecting this year and make effective plans to meet their needs.
Even if your tech stack can handle the stream of orders from January to September, many systems strain under the consistent pressure and surges of peak season purchases. That doesn’t mean you need to throw out every tool in your tech stack, though.
Instead, you can bulk it up by adding solutions that offer predictive analytics, scalable omnichannel order management, AI fraud prevention, and enhanced customer care. By doing so, the most vulnerable aspects of your business will be protected during peak season, and you’ll be able to successfully avoid order fulfillment breakdowns.
From ongoing health and safety concerns and rising inflation to other financial and family issues, people have a myriad of reasons to avoid going back to work onsite. As a result, retailers and eCommerce businesses are struggling to fill their seasonal slots.
As you prepare for your peak season, it’s important you do three things: create an environment where potential candidates can feel safe working this holiday season, promote these safety measures strategically in employer branding campaigns, and automate where you can.
By balancing these strategies, your company will be better prepared come the holiday rush in during peak season.
As you plan for and implement this year’s strategy to improve the customer experience and drive sales, the key will be to consider the trends that will impact holiday shopping, your omnichannel technology stack, store fulfillment operations, and employee hiring and retention strategies to be successful during the 2022 peak season.
Read the next blog post in this series: “How to Prepare for Peak 2022, Part 2: Technology.”