Craft Focus - December 2021/January 2022 (Issue 88)

88 What other main seasons should I be focusing on? Natasha Necati, Executive Director of Crafty Arts discusses how to make the most out of the seasonal calendar for optimum retail success! In retail, if you say peak season, it means Christmas. No other season comes to mind as strong as Christmas. Yes, Christmas is our biggest season but what else is out there? What other seasons could be beneficial to our business? Christmas will always be the top but there is nothing quite like the excitement of discovering a new peak that we can tap into. Opportunity is everywhere, you just need to know how to look for it, and once you’ve found it, nurturing it to become one of your best-selling seasons. The problem with only focusing on Christmas is that being reliant on just one season or peak is essentially putting all your eggs in one basket. If you do this and you happen to unfortunately have a bad year, you’re putting yourself in a difficult financial position, where you’re potentially waiting for another 12 months to pass to hopefully recoup your losses. Retail is one the most exciting industries, and when the going is good, it’s great, but it can equally as fast go against you. Looking for and identifying new areas and seasons to invest your energy and time into can help you not rely so heavily on one timeframe and can help create the mindset of having several peaks and troughs throughout the year. In doing this, not only can you help your cash flow but forecasting as well. Christmas will always be the number one season for us all. I feel at Crafty Arts we’re always talking about it in one capacity or another. Whether it’s planning from January to December; getting feedback from ourselves and the team; or trying to identify key Christmas sellers as early as February. Feedback is essential, and learning from the previous year is paramount to creating success in the year to come. At Crafty Arts, we ask ourselves and analyse many areas of our business before, during and after peak season. During, we focus on identifying weaknesses or ‘pain points’, whether it’s staff training gaps, packaging issues or stock movement issues. We note them down for discussion, and fix the things we can action straight away. After the peak has started to calm, we start to look at what we could do better for the following year. These action points are things such as what products we over stocked, stock that we under-ordered, what we did well (it’s always important to look at the wins, no matter the size), what we didn’t do well and what’s a must for the next year. Annually we always ask ourselves these questions and we work on creating an action plan of these points and put fixes into place as soon as we can. During your busiest season, it’s sometimes easier to see the areas to work on. When you start identifying your new seasons and new peaks, you’ll have your methods and strategies in place allowing you to take full advantage of what’s next to come. The question now is, what other seasons are out there? In retail, there are many