Don’t Forget to Check the Sale Rack!

Are sale items good for business or are they bad for business? Working in retail, it is hard not to promote the “Sales Rack”. There have been some times where, as sales associates, we have been tasked with pushing regular priced items more aggressively than sale items. At my place of employment, every Thursday we look through the company markdown sheets, pull the regular priced item as specified by the company, cross out the regular price, and mark the current price on the tag in red marker. From there, the item will be placed on the rack. An item can get marked down up to three times and once there are three showing, that is the final selling price. Every Wednesday, the associate will take the price scanner and go through all the sale items to see what went down further if items have not reached a third markdown. With this being said, it has been hard pushing regular priced items lately. A majority of customers have been only at the sale racks or looking for sale items. One would think that because a majority of customers are buying sale items, it would hurt business. But, in fact, sales and clearance are beneficial for business. They benefit business because they…
1. Help Balance Inventory
2. Attracts the price conscious shopper
3. Key component in seasonal shifts
4. Maximizes attendance

Sales Promotions can be in the form of…
1. Coupons
2. Sweepstakes
3. Limited time offers
4. Flash Sales
5. Reward card point accumulation
6. Branded merchandise giveaways

In addition, the sales promotions can prompt a sale that was not planned. I could direct a customer who was “Just Browsing” to the sale items. Usually “browsing” is the magic word for no intention of buying. If there is a good deal, the customer may end up making an unplanned purchase, which is more profit to the company.

Therefore, Sales and Promotion are an important piece of the  marketing mix. They need to be planned and used accordingly. Next time, I won’t feel as shameful when I suggest to a customer to “check the sales rack”. I will never know but my prompting could result in an unplanned sale.


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