Why Graphing Improves Open-to-Buy
As a retail operations manager or open-to-buy professional, you are always looking for a more streamlined way to plan your operations and product purchasing. One of the best ways to get more efficient at the process is by graphing the historical patterns of your sales, merchandising, and product purchasing efforts. With the right visuals you can see at a glance what is working and what is not.
What Can You See With Open-to-Buy Graphs?
A good graph should be able to show you plenty of information. Here’s just a sampling of the data you can see at a glance regarding your retail operations with the right graphing tools:
- Year vs. year comparisons
- Full retail sales and markdowns
- Gross margin against purchases
- Historical benchmarks
- Lock and unlock sub-level data
- Season vs. season
- Customized retail data
You can customize the data you want to see based on industry standards or the uniqueness of your retail business. ChainDrive is flexible and robust, allowing you to plan your entire operation better from top to bottom.
Why Historical Comparisons Are Important
Retailers look at history to predict the future. After all, the crystal ball hasn’t worked for centuries.
Seriously, history is the best predictor of the future. If you know, for instance, that one product sells better during the winter than it does any other time of year, then you can beef up your supply for the winter months and then plan an after-winter markdown for what is left over. If you plan it properly, you won’t have much left over.
Let’s say you have a product that sells like crazy year round–except in July. In July every year, you see sales of that on product fall through the floor. You can halt your purchasing for that product for the month of July to increase profitability.
Visual graphing allows you to get a glimpse of those kinds of historical data so you can make better buying decisions.
Segment Your Graphic Analyses
With ChainDrive’s Open-to-Buy retail management solution, you can customize your graphs to show you the data that is important to you. If you aren’t concerned with sales information from five years ago, don’t include it. If last year was a fluke in some product categories, you can eliminate the data from that year and not consider it for benchmarking purposes. That’s what a good graphical tool allows you to do.
When you have the right retail operations management tools, you can do wonders in your business.