End-of-season sale (EOSS) is every bargain shopper’s dream. Every year, retailers offer discounts on items associated with the past season to make room for the upcoming season’s stock. Unlike unplanned and unanticipated flash sales, these sales enable bargain shoppers to plan and take full advantage of the discounts on offer.
Prevailing levels of high inflation also force price-conscious customers to wait for these sales to grab wishlisted items. Hence, this is a win-win situation for both retailers and customers. Retailers can increase their footfall within a short period, and customers can get hold of desired items at discounted rates.
Advancing the EOSS
Retailers, at times, announce their end-of-season sales almost a month ahead of schedule to tackle slowdown blues and loss of share to e-commerce companies. These traditional sales not only drive sales of discounted products but customers also end up buying fresh stock. Additionally, these days, people are aware that items like apparel are available at steep discounts during sales; hence, the earlier you announce the sale, the more you feed their anticipation. Delaying these sales would impact your overall sales numbers as customers might have exhausted their budgets on brands which are already on sale.
E-commerce Vs Traditional Retail
E-commerce has escalated the challenges for brick-and-mortar retailers as customers can easily buy goods online at discounted prices at any time of the year. The Indian retail segment is divided into two large categories: the ‘organised retail market’, valued at $60 billion or about 9 percent of the sector, and the ‘unorganised retail market’ which makes up the remaining 91 percent. Thus, it is critical for brands that form the organised section of retail to make these EOSS more desirable to customers and attract larger numbers of them.
Brands, malls and offline retailers are combating the side-effects of the advances made by their online counterparts. The latter group sells goods at deep discounts and announces impromptu sales multiple times a year. To fight these trends, retailers are holding mid-season and holiday season sales apart from the traditional EOSS to generate larger footfalls.
Maximizing the benefits of EOSS
With a season coming to its end, retailers gear up for the traditional end-of-season sales. Although this activity has been around as a practice for long, not every retailer can leverage it. Some retailers decide to give very steep discounts or offer them for longer periods than necessary. They consequently acclimatise their customers to wait for these sales, thereby causing damage to their sales numbers for the remaining part of the year. On the other hand, some retailers are unsuccessful at converting new customers or lose their existing loyal customers because they fail to treat them differently or treat them to sub-par shopping standards.
The biggest question that arises with EOSS is what brands should do to generate maximum revenue from this activity. Below are a few best practices to follow:
1. Different customers should be treated differently: Your loyal customers who typically
2. Stock the right products: Don’t just try to liquidate your outdated stock during these sales; instead, focus on what the customer might like to buy.
3. Create a better store experience: Every brand’s success is hinged on its ability to delight its customers every time, even during EOSS, when they experience heavy customer traffic.
4. Create anticipation for the audience: Customers might not always remember the details of your sales if they delete your mail or close the ad. Hence, it is important to constantly keep reminding and building up the anticipation in the customer’s mind.
5. Targeted communication: Your EOSS communication should be targeted at customers most likely to buy from your brand to cut back on promotion costs.
End-of-season sales are highly important for retailers. A single season has the power to make or break your entire year. EOSS is not only about stock clearance. There are several ways a retailer can benefit from this activity if they tweak the concept of EOSS in the right manner. Luxurious brands use this opportunity to sell their products to customers who cannot afford their range of products without discounts. This way, they get an opportunity to make the brand accessible to a wider audience without too much of a brand dilution. With increased footfall, brands secure much-needed mileage. Due to the appealing offers that are available, people tend to try out more designs within different price brackets, thereby, enjoying a better and longer brand experience.
As a business owner, the worst thing you can do for your brand is underplay the importance of EOSS. They hold the remarkable potential to drive brand awareness and revenue. Hence, it is essential you keep coming up with unique offers for your customers.