It’s October, and you know what that means… the holidays are coming up. We’re not exactly endorsing the decision to start playing Christmas music when fall’s only just begun, either. (But you do you!)
But when you have your own eCommerce or brick-and-mortar retail business, you’re constantly living in the future, thinking months ahead, planning for the next season and beyond even when you’re firmly planted in the current one. Especially if you create and sell custom products!
While it’d be nice to come up with an idea for a seasonal collection and be able to start selling those products the very next day, sourcing and creating new items is a juggling act that requires plenty of planning.
Think about it: from your customers’ perspectives, all they see is new items being introduced a few weeks ahead of the new season from time to time. But on your end, you’ve got to decide on a seasonal strategy, create or source relevant and on-trend products, receive those products in the mail from your supplier or manufacturer, advertise those products, sell those products, and make sure your customers can have those products in-hand well in advance of when they actually want to use them.
Basically, planning for seasons or holidays doesn’t just take a few days – it can take weeks, if not months. So the earlier, the better! You’d best start planning out the rest of the year (and well into the next one!) now so you have plenty of time to actually promote and sell your products. (Because that’s the step that makes you the $$!)
Here are 5 upcoming holidays you should start planning for and some inventory tips for each one:
Forget about your costume plans – if you haven’t yet, start thinking about Halloween-themed products you might introduce in the shop next month! Here are a few ideas:
- Halloween socks – create fun crew socks with black and orange stripes or a cute ghost pattern to celebrate spooky season.
- Costume hats – not everyone likes to go all out for a halloween costume – create funny hats that work as a costume all on their own.
- Stickers/patches – create a collection of decorative stickers or patches that all go together, like a black cat, a jack-o-lantern, a skeleton, and a candy corn.
If you’re hoping to create custom products to sell ahead of Halloween 2021, we’d recommend getting a move on this – with The/Studio’s fast turnaround times, you can get custom Halloween products in stock just in time as long as you order ASAP! Start creating Halloween products here.
Veterans Day may not be a holiday people throw parties for or go out of their way to shop for, but creating custom products especially with the holiday in mind can allow you to show extra support for service members as a business.
Consider creating military patches, challenge coins, pins, lanyards, or hats designed especially to honor military service members and their families. (Remember, Veterans Day is on November 11 – if you’re thinking of selling custom products this upcoming Veterans Day, get your order in right away!) You could also throw in a special discount for active or retired military members who make a purchase – either just on Veterans Day or year-round!
Give your customers even more to be thankful for with custom-designed Thanksgiving products! You could create socks, pins, or hats printed with fall leaves, pilgrims, or turkey designs. Or you could make something custom with your loved ones in mind, like a commemorative pin or patch, to hand out at your family’s Thanksgiving dinner.
Black Friday/Small Business Saturday/Cyber Monday
No need to create Black Friday-themed products – when it comes to planning your inventory for this huge sales weekend, it’s all about the quantity and strategy. Start thinking about Christmas gifts you’ll start selling, what sales you’ll run, and how much you need to keep in stock to make sure you don’t run clear out over the weekend!
You might want to consider reintroducing a few best-selling custom hats, socks, or patches you’ve sold in the past. Black Friday isn’t until November 26, but it’s never too early to start planning!
It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Create custom products to sell ahead of the Christmas season. Think about gifts you could sell – socks, hats, patches, lanyards, and keychains all make great stocking stuffers! – as well as decor or seasonal apparel you could sell with a red and green holiday theme. Plan on ordering Christmas products well in advance, towards the end of September or beginning of October.