Tuesday, 13 December 2016

Blogmas Day 7 - Boxing Day Sales Preparation

I am very behind on Blogmas, I am meant to be publishing Day 12! As I have no laptop currently I have to do all my blog posts on the computer at my work.

Last week on Thursday we had a public holiday and the next day I had off as my friend came to visit me, so I had a lot of work to do on Wednesday. I had to schedule 100 tweets for my companies twitter account, schedule facebook posts and so much more and I simply had no time to write 4 blog posts!

This post I am very excited to write as shopping to me is hard work, I like to go into and out of shops as quickly as possible with ease. Boxing Day sales are the hardest time to shop but I have advice as a regular shopper and also a former Sales Assistant at River Island, I am used to sales.

Working at River Island was actually so much fun, hard work but very rewarding. After working as a waitress for nearly 5 years I was worried I would find a retail job difficult as its very different to being a waitress.

I was hired as a Christmas Temp in 2015 and I got offered to stay on longer (until my placement started) and I happily accepted! Working in retail showed me how hard staff work , especially during the sales! I thought being a Sales Assistant was just being on the shop floor, tills and changing rooms and that’s it. I was so wrong, there is so much more to it! You work on the shop floor but also I worked in the stock room too if they needed a hand which is where I mainly was during the sales prep! In fact, on the last shift before Christmas I didn´t actually work on the shop floor, I was busy working in the stock room.

The typical work you do in the stock room for Sales Preparation is tagging clothes, writing price tickets, separating clothes, bringing down equipment, bagging items and scanning items. A lot of hard work goes into it and it is very time consuming so you have to be quick.

One shift I believe I started work at 12pm on a Thursday and was meant to finish at 7:30pm but I helped with merchandising and pricing items as we prepared for Boxing Day Sales and I didn’t get home until 11:30pm.

My feet were hurting and I was very tired but I wanted to stay and help because preparing for sales is tough and you need all the help you can get! Working in River Island also made me want to make sure the store looked incredible, it is such an eclectic and stylish company that I wanted to make sure the store reflected that.

A lot of the store work was merchandising the store which is basically making sure the displays looked nice and to the theme, moving clothes around, helping change displays for the bags, accessories and shoes and a lot of pricing! So basically retail workers put a lot of effort into making the store nice and tidy for sales, which is why I put this blog post up to help you make your boxing sales experience nicer and also make it easier on the staff!

My pet hate when it comes to shopping (especially in Primark – I never go anymore) is when I see clothes all over the floor. As a person if something falls on the floor I have to go pick it up, even before working in retail a messy store just makes me feel so uncomfortable. So when we worked shifts with a packed shop, being unable to reach the sales area and at the end of the day are faced with tangled clothes, clothes on the floor that’s been trodden on it’s a sight all of us hated and greeted with a heavy sigh or just silence.
It takes a while to tidy up all of the items, I would say a good hour is spent clearing it up. Sales are not just clothes you chuck on a rail, in River Island they were places in categories like tops and dresses and also put together based on the material. Trying to make it look as nice as possible for our customers.

Top Tips

1. Be Tidy…You Will Feel Great Knowing You Are Making Staff Happy

This is a bit of a selfish one, but one which will make shoppers feel good about themselves. If you help someone carry their shopping or give someone directions, it makes you feel good because you have helped someone, right? That’s how I feel when I pick clothes up off the floor in shops, because when I see clothes on the floor I don´t want to visit the shop. If you  don’t like the sight of it, why would you allow someone else to have to deal with it and hate it!

2. Keep Calm

I will be the first to admit that I have no patience when it comes to shopping, being behind really slow walkers, people pushing me out the way and kids running about test my patience. However,  getting worked up is not going to make your experience enjoyable. Keep calm, just think of all the deals you could have and count to 10!

3. Click and Collect

If you found something  in the shop before and still deciding on if you want it and don´t want to risk losing it in the sales, try click and collect. Find it online, buy it and collect it at the store and try it on. If you like it great! If you don’t you can get a refund straight away!

4. Shop in a Small Group

As I like to go into shops and spend a small amount of time in there, I often find it difficult if I am with someone who spends ages in there.

Example: me and my parents years ago when we lived in Southampton went for a family day shopping, we went into New Look and this personal shopper pretty much jumped into our lives. His enthusiastic personality got mums attention and she was off with him finding some clothes. 30 minutes go by and me and dad got bored and decided to go get some food. 3 hours later and arriving with 4 filled bags, mum finally joins us with 17 items! I was speechless and so was dad… I think he felt his wallet hurt!

So sometimes going by yourself and being selfish is the best way to be in sales! You can go in whatever shops you like!

5. Don´t Shop on Boxing Day

Most sales from boxing day are extended for a while, so if you don´t want to be hit with the busy stores, you can always go another day! It may be quieter and a lot easier to shop! You will also have a chance to take a look at everything and be able to see the whole of the sale.

6. Be Comfortable

Boxing Day sales usually means that it will be a day out, you will be on your feet all day so wear comfortable shoes!

You will be thankful for not having blisters! I spent all day in Barcelona in the shops and I had 3 blisters on each foot from my sandals.

Don´t be me!

7. Bring Some Energy

Restaurants will also be busy. People will be there having lunch or men will be there waiting for the girls to finish shopping!  Bring snacks and drinks if you don´t want to be in a long queue waiting for some food!

So all I have to say is good luck and happy shopping!


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