Written by Rosa Stocks, One Step Retail Blogger
It’s that time of the year again when we roll up our sleeves and give our business a thorough, top-to-bottom cleaning. As everyone knows, the first step to spring cleaning is creating a checklist to help you get the job done. So, I took the time to gather some key tips to get you started building your very own Spring Cleaning Checklist.
Now, for us retailers, this time of the year can also be the best time to review and streamline our strategies and processes. With that in mind, today’s tips will not only help you dust off the cobwebs, but they will also prepare you to make 2019 a successful year in retail!
Spring Cleaning Your Physical Store
- Clean, organize and label all of your inventory.
- Donate any product that has worn the “On Sale” sign more than once or has not seen the light of day since last Spring.
- Any defective inventory should get call tags or be donated.
- Assess your store layout. What areas have the most or least foot traffic, and why? How can you optimize certain areas to increase engagement?
- Evaluate your loss prevention program.
- Stock up on supplies.
- Do a thorough cleaning of your store’s windows, shelves, vents, floors, dressing rooms, carpets, rugs, light fixtures, and drapes.
- Replace batteries in detectors and alarms.
- Clean and organize your stockroom and office.
- The outside is as important as the inside. Don’t forget to pay attention to your exterior walls, landscape, parking lot, sidewalk, and dumpster area.
Spring Cleaning Your Online Store
- Review and improve your SEO.
- Analyze your page performance to see which pages should be kept, discarded, refreshed, repurposed or consolidated.
- Test every step of the buying journey for functionality and ideas for improvement.
- Fix any broken links or forms.
- Update branding support pages and content (About Us, FAQs, Locations, Customer Logos and so on).
- Update copyright and any time references made throughout your site.
- Do an image inventory to clean up, optimize and refresh your website’s imagery.
- Clear out old inventory by offering flash sales, special offers, or free shipping on clearance items.
- Review and update pricing and inventory.
- Evaluate and update your Call to Actions.
- Remove any unwanted advertisements appearing on your site that may disrupt your customers’ shopping experience.
Spring Cleaning Your Marketing
- Yes, your marketing strategies require cleaning every once in a while, too! What better time to evaluate the effectiveness of your marketing than when a season comes to an end and a new one begins? You can:
- Evaluate the performance of your marketing campaigns. See which ones worked, need improvement, or fell short.
- Review which channels have resonated with your customers.
- Clean up your marketing database.
- Delete all contacts that have hard bounced or bounced more than once.
- Reach out to contacts that have not engaged for a long time or seem to be showing less interest.
- Try out new strategies and evaluate their performance at the end of the season.
- Clean up your social media accounts by updating your cover images, ensuring your information (about us, location, and hours) is up-to-date, removing unwanted posts, reviewing your “friends,” “likes,” and “followers,” and adding new connections that can benefit your brand.
Spring Cleaning Your Technology
- Much like your shelves need dusting, so does your technology. Technology is always advancing so this is a great time to:
- Dust and clean all of your hardware.
- Dispose of any unused hardware.
- Back-up!!! It’s important to do this first before continuing with this list. Also, you really should be backing up your data more than just once a year!
- Update all software, add any required security patches, and double-check that your technology is in compliance with the latest industry standards.
- Declutter your databases. Remove any unnecessary files and data.
- Evaluate your technology. Is it time for an upgrade or add-on?
- Implement new technology that can improve efficiency, operations, and experience.
Phew, that is a lot of work! And, believe me, I am not assuming you can do it all in one week. Which is why, when building your list, I recommend creating a list of tasks that can be done this month and a list of tasks that can be done throughout the year. If you want to be even more proactive, schedule them to be done repeatedly so your business is always running smoothly and efficiently. Your shoppers will really appreciate it.