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Managing your retail peak season: Are you prepared?

Industry views | 29 January 2016

Busy shopping mall

We all know that when the festive season demand starts to increase, it’s time to supply – and in massive quantities too. Forecasting for the retail peak season might start a year or more in advance, but it’s still difficult to find an outsourced logistics supplier that understands the need to really step up during the seasonal rush. With jingle bells the theme song to every retailer in the world, we thought we’d look into the less jolly side of things and provide you with some useful insights into sourcing a logistics provider that is as dedicated as you are to making it through – and thriving – during your peak season.

Here are some crucial features you need to look for in a logistics provider when it comes to managing your retail peak season:

Scalability according to your logistical needs

This is one of the core things that a logistics solution needs to offer, not only to ensure that they are able to grow with you, but that they can step up during the retail peak season. While five trucks and bi-monthly deliveries might do the trick for most of the year, you can’t afford to run out of stock simply because no additional transport is available for you. Ensure that your supplier has an adequate range of options at your disposal so that you’re able to flex your logistics capacity during the retail peak season. This is also important should your company expand into new areas.

Overflow warehousing space

The peak season presents retailers with a chance to get your piece of the Christmas pudding, and it’s up to you to ensure your company obtains the biggest piece. Your warehouse space might be sufficient to see to your overall storage needs throughout most of the year, but is a restriction in size leaving you with emptier pockets than your opponents? A logistics supplier that has access to overflow warehouse space can help ensure that you increase your stock before the peak season and have sufficient storage to boot. In this way you don’t to need to lease a new warehouse or source out additional space or upgrade your own storage simply to service the few months during retail peak season.

Going the extra (and untravelled) mile

The festive season sees a massive increase in travel, both local and international, which always takes its toll on the road network. This means it might be necessary to find an alternative route to ensure your deliveries to branches are carried out on time, avoiding the holiday rush.
But sadly, not all logistics providers can offer you this solution. You need a partner that will find the best, quickest and most cost-effective route to carry out your deliveries.

Find the right partner to help you manage your peak season

Supply chain during peak period can be incredibly challenging for you, with demands coming from all directions – is there enough warehouse space? How will we manage the throughput?

Perhaps you could look to discover new warehousing solutions which could result in easier decision making and the orchestration of workflows.

At Wincanton, we understand the pressure that goes along with managing your peak season.

We are a multichannel logistics service provider, and our flexible and cost-effective transport and warehousing solutions can be tailor-made to ensure your company can thrive before, during and after the festive season. Wincanton has over 200 sites across the UK and Ireland offering warehousing solutions to businesses in all sectors and of all sizes.

For more information feel free to speak with our dedicated team on 0844 335 0502.

How can we help?

Have a supply chain question, need some help, just want a chat? Contact Wincanton today.