How to Capitalise on Sales: A leading brand's advice

Black Friday for some brands is an opportunity to maximise sales, for others it's a logistical nightmare - let's discuss how to properly prepare your brand
3 minute read

What is BFCM?

In this article, we as one of the leading UK clothing manufacturers are going to explore the details of BFCM and what our advice, as a company who have seen a lot of successful brands grow and a lot fail would be on how to effectively plan and strategise around BCFM.

We are going to cover the following topics:

What is BFCM?
- The history of BFCM
- Is it really all it’s hyped up to be and do online brands benefit as much as retail businesses?
- How to plan your production ahead of BFCM
- How to decide on discounts
- What is BFCM?

BFCM stands for Black Friday, Cyber Monday and is the biggest shopping period that starts the Friday after Thanksgiving, until Monday. It is a period where both retailers and e-commerce stores offer large discounts on their product in a bid to maximise that quarters sales and because it’s such a popular period- this really does work.

The History of BFCM

BFCM originated in America. Historically, Thanksgiving was known as a 4-day weekend with many workers in the 50’s calling in sick the day after Thanksgiving and using this as a day for a shopping spree. A combination of that and postwar consumer spending led to the success of appliance sales in areas like Philadelphia. The chaos that ensued (as often seen nowadays in retail shops) was labelled by Police as Black Friday and once the New York newspapers picked up this term, it spread throughout other States. In the 90’s, the terms black and red were referred to by accountants for either profit, or debt in businesses and the association of black Friday, with increases in sales and extra cash flow led to the utilisation as BFCM as the way of maximising profits that quarter.

Is it really all it’s hyped up to be and do online brands benefit as much as retail businesses?

Historically speaking, retailers have always benefited much more over BFCM than online businesses have. However, you have to remember that the rise of e-commerce is a new thing and that the last few years trends show that e-commerce businesses are actually starting to benefit more. As one of the leading UK clothing manufacturers, we’ve seen how successful some brands can be in that they’re able to shift a lot of stock very quickly and periods like this- where consumer spending is up and people are more likely to buy into the discounted marketing; it’s a perfect recipe for successful sales and to end a strong quarter.

How to plan your production ahead of BFCM:

This is a hard one to tackle, as there’s no hard and fast rule for how to manage your production for this period. Every brand that works with UK clothing manufacturers will know that preparation for BFCM should really start as early as March. Yes, you read that right- March. I know right now you’re thinking that with us just a month away from BFCM that you’re screwed so to speak.

Well, here’s some good news- as one of the leading UK clothing manufacturers, we actually offer one of the fastest turnaround services in the market. Our white label clothing service allows you to go from concept to market in just 10 working days. Yes, you actually also read this one right; just 10 days. We’re not going to explain in detail and steer away from the purpose of this blog about our products and services, but instead leave this link below so you can read up on what we do, how as one of the few UK clothing manufacturers we actually offer better quality, a better service and more efficiency for your supply line;

In short, what this means is that you can still use a UK clothing manufacturer today and have stock here in time for BFCM, so let’s talk!

Now, back to business- how to plan production ahead; really, you want to ensure you have a lot of stock in your most popular products. Ensure you have a nice size split weighing heavier on mediums and larges for menswear and small/ medium for womenswear. This might vary from brand to brand depending on their customer base! Our personal opinion (only applies for BFCM) but we’d rather overstock and carry weeks cover off the back then under stock and miss out on potential sales/ disappointing customers.

How to decide on discounts:

Similar to above, there is no hard and fast rule on this one. It all depends on your margins. If you’re making 400% margins (which aren’t that rare in B2C fashion) then I’m sure you can quite comfortably add a 30% discount on the RRP and still be pretty comfortable. I suppose the true answer to this is to ensure you know your margins, what you can afford to sell them at whilst competing with other brands but not putting yourself in a position where you’re barely turning over a profit and going through your stock. It’s pretty simple- know your numbers!

Overall, I hope you found this helpful. As one of the leading UK clothing manufacturers, we always strive to offer free value and content to everyone in order to ensure brands maximise their chances of success. If you require any fashion manufacturing, or are interested in hearing about our products or services then please feel free to leave your contact information below and one of the team will be in touch to discuss how we can offer you UK clothing manufactures services.

About the author
Anthony Mellor

Anthony Mellor is a fashion entrepreneur, writer and consultant. Anthony writes in-depth articles about topics related to fashion, business and supply chains.

Anthony successfully scaled and exited a D2C fashion brand at the young age of 20. Since then, he's gone onto start and successfully operate two multi-6-figure clothing manufacturing businesses and currently offers up one-to-one constancy to brand owners.

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