Request a Demo
    November 20, 2014
    4 minute read

    Why Optimized Onboarding is the Key to a Profitable Holiday Season

    by: Glori Blatt
    Happy_New_Year

    Thanksgiving is a week away, the holiday shopping season is about to begin, and The National Retail Federation is predicting retail sales will grow 4.1% this year. Many companies have been planning their assortment and promotional tactics for months in preparation. Now that you've survived the crush of onboarding holiday products, It's time to take a step back and think about the process: was it efficient and effective or more likely, kind of miserable? 

    The new year is fast approaching, and a little bit of refection goes a long way: here's to indentifying the issues, and correcting them, before the cycle starts all over again.

    So, why is efficient onboarding of new products so crucial to brand success generally and the Holiday season in particular?

    Updating your Infrastructure

    email_stress

     

    In order to onboard products, coordination is required between several teams including buyers, inventory, creative, marketing, store, and e-commerce. New products are researched at trade shows and online, samples must be ordered and tested, and product information must be collected and uploaded to the online store. Each stage requires collaboration between multiple hands to ensure a smooth transition. This is hard enough to accomplish during the rest of the year, but it becomes nearly impossible to facilitate during the busy, stressful holiday season.

    The best way to make this hectic pace palatable? Adopt a automated system of product information exchange to facilitate efficient internal communication and organization.

    How Marbles: The Brain Store optimized for Holiday

    marbles_exterior

    Marbles: The Brain Store is a specialty hobby and crafts retailer that sells games, puzzles, books, and computer software that train your brain. Marbles has come a long way since their humble beginnings as a kiosk in the Woodfield Mall: the quirky retailer now has a national presence that includes 28 brick and mortar stores throughout the US, as well as an ecommerce platform.

    Marbles reputation as a category leader depends on consistent updates of their catalogue. They are always searching for “of the moment” products that will engage their loyal (and growing) customer base and they often test new products in a few of their brick and mortar locations before rolling them out company wide.

    For Marbles a lack of visibility between team members made this process close to painful. Employees would collect extraneous information that would have benefited their colleagues on other teams: for example the buyers might receive great marketing copy along with the standard information required by their SAP system. The marketing and ecommerce team, who had no way of knowing this information already existed, would write new copy or request the same content from their suppliers a second time.

    In order to go from stress to success, Marbles utilized a cloud based product information exchange software. This alleviated the burden that had been unavoidable when team members were working autonomously because it automated communication between the teams. For the first time, incoming product information was accessible by the entire team, and Marbles employees were automatically notified when things were added or edited. It also allowed sales employees to keep track of the products in their location more easily and receive more thorough training.

    The Takeaways

    Holiday strategies are only as effective as the tools you're using to facilitate them. Outdated methods of internal communicaiton, like e-mailing spread sheets, is going to cause problems that no amount of strategizing can solve. The only way to keep up with the demands of omnichannel commerce is by utilizing a system that is as technologically advanced as the contemporary consumer.

    Want to learn more about how Marbles: The Brain Store mastered item onboarding?

    Download our Case Study!

     

    Related Posts

    Keep Reading

    August 6, 2014

    How Marbles: The Brain Store Mastered Item Onboarding (Case Study)

    Is your arduous item-onboarding process getting in the way of scouting new and interesting products from your suppliers? Do you spend less time coming up with great...
    by: Glori Blatt
    August 3, 2016

    5 Tips for Maximizing Product Sales This Holiday Season [Infographic]

    2 minute read
    Takeaway: Product content can play a huge role in your success this holiday season. Check out our infographic on the most important ways to make sure information about...
    by: Cara Wood
    September 12, 2017

    4 ways your toy brand can win this holiday season

    5 minute read
    Takeaway: With the holiday season just a few months away, toy brands should prepare their toy catalog marketing now by building a trusted central source of content and...
    by: Nikki Wise