As a retail store owner, a lot of responsibility falls on your shoulders – well, that’s because you play an important role in the overall success of your business.
When it comes to your retail store, however, you also wear a lot of hats. There’s boss, manager, disciplinarian, mentor, customer service executive, sales associate, social media manager, website editor, inventory manager… you get the gist!
With your business exploring multiple selling channels, the number of hats you wear only keeps increasing.
But amongst all these responsibilities, the one thing that stands out the most is your operational efficiency; how you work towards ensuring that your store runs smoothly is extremely important.
Let’s take a look at how you can arm yourself with the right technology, skills, and staff to make sure your store’s operational efficiency is at its peak!
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Be Proactive and Contribute Towards the Smooth Functioning of Your Ops
Retailers come in all formats and sizes. In fact, 9 out of 10 businesses in the market fall under various retail categories, suggesting your growth relies more on strategy and management than some kind of tide lifting your business in one direction.
The best way out here is to be proactive and stay on top of your inventory control to ensure a smooth sailing of your operations – after all, shrinkage could cost your business billions of dollars.
This brings us to the most crucial point – having loss prevention strategies to reduce shrinkage. Here’s what you can do:
Conduct Regular Physical Counts
If you want to ensure that your store runs smoothly, make regular physical counts a routine.
A physical count, also known as cycle count, is a process of counting your stock and getting an estimate of the overall inventory on hand. You could either conduct this process once a month or every day. If you choose to go with the latter, you could select smaller sections of your store, count the number of items and compare them on your system.
Conducting physical counts for the entire store could be a tad overwhelming since you also have to focus on your customers.
So ensure that you’re coming up with a proper strategy to conduct this routine!
Install Password Protected Automatic Doors in Your Inventory
Both internal and external theft is also one of the most crucial contributors to loss of sales – over 25% and 35% to be precise.
This is where you could consider installing password-protected automatic doors in your inventory; all you need to do is call the professional automatic door installers. However, if you’ve already installed these, make sure you’re conducting regular servicing of automatic doors.
Involve Your Employees in the Process
Simply because you’re the owner of the store, it doesn’t mean you need to take up all the responsibilities – remember, the potential to delegate tasks is also one of the leadership qualities.
Have open communication with your staff and tell them why staying on top of inventory control is crucial; do offer them the required training.
Keep Supporting and Motivating Your Employees
A crucial role that you play, when it comes to keeping up your store’s efficiency, is coordinating and motivating your employees at all times.
This is particularly crucial because of the increase in the employee turnover rate in the retail niche – out of the top 5 verticals, the retail sector has the highest turnover. Additionally, in the past few years, nearly 38% of retail owners reported that they had witnessed a turnover rate of nearly 65%.
Since retail store owners can help reduce this turnover, it becomes imperative that, instead of leaving employees on their own, you communicate with them and keep them motivated.
Implement and Leverage the Right Equipment
Most of your retail store operations can be organized by leveraging the right equipment.
From selecting the perfect POS system to installing the right stock management software, technology can not only change the way you work but also improve the overall efficiency of your business.
While using automated reports can help identify which products are selling faster and which ones need a little boost, leveraging creative marketing campaigns and promotions can help determine the latest retail trends, not to mention the various opportunities to boost your sales.
In today’s data-driven world, retail stores are not only growing at a faster pace but also becoming more sustainable.
This means understanding various metrics like gross and net profit, sell-through rate and sales per square foot can help you come up with insightful proposals, having a huge impact on your bottom line. What’s more, with the right tools, you won’t have to take up the role of an analyst; your tools will get the job done!
Ensure Your Business is Equipped With the Right Skills
It doesn’t matter whether you’ve been a part of the retail industry for years or have just started your business, there’s always room for improvement especially in terms of skills.
This is when you need to focus on few crucial areas:
Sales of your retail store
Leadership and ops management
Sales of Your Retail Store
Although this doesn’t form an essential part of your responsibilities, there will be times when you’ll have to work on actively driving more sales.
Leadership and Ops Management
A key difference between being the leader and a sales associate is the additional responsibility of stepping up whenever required. And if you’re moving towards ops management, then you’ll have to learn a few more skills to lead the team efficiently.
If you want your employees to know about your products and brand, on the whole, it’s equally important for you to have an idea about it.
Use your products, understand them, get to know your competitors, and keep yourself updated about the products and other business training. If there’s no documentation or training in place, then make sure you have one.
Retail Store Operations – To Sum Up
Operational tasks and inventory management are two of the most important areas of your retail business.
That said, it’s important for you to have enough knowledge and experience to ensure the smooth running of your operations and overall business. You need to serve your customers and ensure they’re being provided with what they need.
Not only do you have to contribute towards your retail store but also face new challenges down the road and turn them into profitable opportunities.
Make these points a part of your strategy and notice your efficiency improve!
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