Editor's Note: Total Retail Releases its Top 50 Tips of 2023 Report
Challenging economic and labor markets combined with evolving consumer behaviors have required many retailers and brands to adjust their ways of doing business. However, times of uncertainty and disruption present an opportunity for companies to rise above the competition, increase market share, and win their customers’ loyalty. To accomplish this goal, retail organizations need to be operating at their highest level. From the C-suite down, employees need to be aligned on the goals of the organization as well as the processes to help accomplish them.
With that dynamic in mind, Total Retail has curated its 50 best tips of the year. The tips featured in this annual report have appeared throughout various content mediums that our brand has published in 2023. Our editorial team carefully reviewed each piece of content published. The final collection of tips touches upon virtually every facet of running a successful retail business, from data management to marketing to supply chain to technology, among other functionalities. Each tip offers valuable insight that readers can implement into their businesses immediately, leading to more efficient and effective organizations.
We intend the tips featured in this report to be actionable for our audience. The chosen tips are meant to drive top- and bottom-line gains and are prescriptive in nature. Make it your New Year’s resolution to begin incorporating these tips into your 2024 business processes. We believe the return yielded will be well worth the time and effort.
Here's a sampling of just some of the tips that you can expect to find in the full report:
- Once you’ve adopted the mindset that a cyberattack is inevitable, the next step is to take an honest appraisal of your organization’s vulnerability to the types of threats it will face. Every system has them, and you can be assured that cyber criminals will find out what yours are if you don’t get there first. Leaders, either with the help of a third party or by using a publicly available guide from places like the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), should make a comprehensive checklist of questions to ask, including where your information is stored, who has access to it, how secure your controls are and — crucially — how well you’re able to monitor user activity and suspicious behavior.” — Jeffrey Engle, Conquest Cyber, “How Individual Organizations Can Help Protect the Supply Chain,” April 26
- Negotiate terms that suit you. Efficient inventory management requires flexibility. You can get it by negotiating flexible terms with your suppliers, particularly around minimum order quantity. MOQ is the fewest number of units a supplier requires before it will fill your order. The lower your MOQ, the less chance of excess inventory. Buyers may also negotiate better payment terms and flexible shipping schedules to help with cash flow. Many e-commerce platforms have buyer verification programs that label buyers based on activity and revenue — those that have revenue above a certain level (e.g., $1 million). If you’re a member of a buyer verification program, tell your suppliers. Then they’ll know your business is reliable and repeatable, and they’ll be more willing to fill your orders fast, give you flexible terms, and offer lower MOQs. — Min Yang, Alibaba Group, “How Sellers Can Avoid the Holiday Hangover: 4 Steps to Minimize Excess Inventory,” Jan. 24
- Understanding the exact experience of any user is critical for fostering a seamless online shopping experience. To do this, a retail brand needs comprehensive visibility across their infrastructure, application, and user environment. Observability solutions can provide end-to-end visibility across data, context and internal workflows, so an e-commerce brand’s ITOps and engineering teams can find and fix problems faster and improve web performance. — Patrick Coughlin, Splunk, “Create a Secure and Reliable Shopping Experience This Holiday Season From Homepage to Cart Checkout,” Oct. 18
Share these tips and this report with your colleagues and peers. Embrace a holistic viewpoint and recognize the value that sharing these best practices, irrespective of job function, can have on the business going forward. Total Retail’s mission is to be the retail executive’s source for content and community. It’s through annual features such as our 50 best tips of the year that we hope to fulfill that mission. Enjoy these valuable insights and best wishes for a prosperous 2024!
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