How many sleeps until Santa?

16/06/2021 White Rose Retail Consultancy
How many sleeps until Santa?

How Many Sleeps Until Santa?

With less than 6 months until Christmas, small retailers need to be well on with considering if, how, and when they are going to deliver Christmas in their store. Christmas may not be a peak season for your business, but for many retailers “The Golden Quarter” is where the profits are made and with a limited window of opportunity plans need to be robust and well thought through.

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Your target market will be instrumental in your seasonal decision making and will dictate some of your purchase decisions. For instance, if your target market is loungewear, you aren’t going to suddenly introduce formal wear to your range for Christmas, similarly if you are an eco-based retailer you won’t suddenly introduce a range of plastic toys. Your Christmas range needs to make sense to your target audience to maximise the sales opportunities.


If you are going to “do Christmas” how are you planning on delivering your Christmas story? Are you going to go the traditional route with Christmas packaging and Santa/Snowman covered products for instance, or are you going down a more generic route with gifting that can be carried over into the next season? Maybe you’ll chose a hybrid with some from each camp? 


What about Black Friday? This is an event that many people do their Christmas shopping at, so are you going to use it as a clearance event for old stock, or are you going to make some special buys with a discount for Black Friday built in to your pricing model; bear in mind that there are regulations around advertising sale items without price establishing them first -  see The Consumer Protection (Code of Practice for Traders on Price Indications) Approval Order 2005 for further details.


When are you going to launch your Christmas range? You will need to make your intro and exit plans to ensure the launch of your Christmas “Range” is smooth and effective and not cluttered and confused with previous season products for maximum impact. You will also need to consider when an appropriate launch date for your Christmas range is, based on the merchandise type, nobody wants to see a Santa before they have had their summer holidays (unless he is heavily marked down in a summer sale!) Somewhere around September/October is ideal for most businesses. You will need to factor in lead time to ensure that everything you want reaches you in time for a launch of your range and to support your marketing efforts.


You will need to consider the trends and how they fit into your business model, for instance if you are a childrenswear retailer and a trend for this year was Disney themed it’s a perfect fit for your business. According to MC&co this year’s trends include:

·         Several colour schemes are trending for Christmas 2021 including: Earthy Christmas colour palettes which are muted, softer and rooted in tones pulled from nature; Statement Christmas Colour Palettes which include jewel tones and bright playful colours; Traditional Christmas Palette with colours rooted in nostalgia; and finally blue tones including royal blue, light blue, teal and aqua.

·         Trending gifts are mischievous and contain wordplay bordering on brazen.

·         Tableware is more functional and less obviously “Christmassy” to increase the longevity of its use.

·         Eco-friendly wrapping, and handmade artisan gifting and decorating made locally.

How do you plan on marketing your Christmas range? With a limited window of opportunity it is critical that you sell as much as possible at full margin to minimise your markdown levels, and finally what is your exit plan for your Christmas stock – you don’t want it hanging around on your shelves in May next year.


If you need help with your Christmas planning contact us at and we cans discuss your options.

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