October '21

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A P P A R E L D E C O R A T I N G S T I T C H S O L U T I O N S | J E N N I F E R C O X 2 6 G R A P H I C S P R O O C T O B E R 2 0 2 1 G R A P H I C S - P R O. C O M 9 STRATEGIES TO SELL AMID SHORTAGES H ere we are, in the home stretch of 2021. The customers are com- ing back to life, ready to place their orders through the end of the year. Things are looking good! You connect with your preferred wholesale suppli- ers, and — pfft — there goes the air out of your balloon. The inventory is not available. Now what? Unfortunately, this may be the situ- ation you find yourself facing multiple times in the coming months. Here are several strategies to help you succeed despite the inventory shortages that you may run into. If one method does not work, try the next one. The apparel deco- ration business owner that creatively and persistently looks for and offers solutions to their customers is the one that will get the orders as 2021 comes to a close. STRATEGY NO. 1 - FIND THEIR WHY Ask the customer why they are placing this particular order. If they need to outfit their staff, their need level for matching shirts is high. If they are ordering gifts for their best customers, they may have much more flexibility in the range of colors of shirts they could order. Offer alternative products as well. Show them products that fall within their budget and provide an equivalent perceived gift value. STRATEGY NO. 2 - FIND THEIR BUDGET LIMITS Ask the customer what their budget limits are for this order. Once you know their low- and high-end ranges, you can look for alternative products that fit their budget needs to fill the order. Get cre- ative and expand your product sugges- tions beyond the category they ordered initially. Yes, they ordered shirts, but maybe a duffel will work as a customer appreciation gift to have something in the timeframe they need. STRATEGY NO. 3 - FIND THEIR TIME LIMIT Ask the customer what their drop-dead in-hand date is. You may be able to se- cure the specific inventory needed if you had another week or two. On the other hand, if the order is for an event that is

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