Merchants seek the right balance between classics and fad items
While new hot products come and go, classics never go out of style. For retailers, this means that maximizing revenue is a balancing act: it’s important to appeal to customers who are looking for the latest fads while knowing to keep reliable standbys in stock. Whether a retailer sells clothing, home goods or even paper and packaging products, finding the right balance between trending and evergreen items is essential if you hope to appeal to a wide and engaged consumer base.
At Paper Mart, we’ve prioritized offering high quality shipping supplies, gift wrap and party supplies at affordable prices. With a significant percentage of our revenue coming from perennial favorites like boxes, gift bags and wrapping paper, we know how important it is to pinpoint evergreen items that need to be in our inventory around the clock.
What about the remaining product selection? That’s where we allow ourselves to get creative. We try to pinpoint fresh, eye-catching items that customers will respond to by attending trade shows, staying tuned to trends on Instagram and Pinterest and soliciting customer feedback.
Finding this balance may be easier than some retailers think. By negotiating this kind of equilibrium, merchants may join the ranks of top-tier brands that have mastered balancing acts of their own. Consider iconic brands like Chanel or Nike: they continually manufacture classic designs — think Chanel’s leather quilted bag, or Nike’s Air Force Ones — while making sure that they always have something fresh to offer such as see-through PVC totes or minimalist everyday sneakers.
While seasonal trends such as chevron wrapping paper may go out of style one day, consumers are clamoring for them in the here and now — so maximize revenue for your brand by capitalizing on the hottest items. If market demand shifts, a steady stream of revenue from your classic standbys will ensure that you don’t miss a beat.
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: How effectively do most retailers balance buying of evergreen items with products that are part of a new fad or trend? What are the keys to retailers avoid overextending in either direction?