The Power of Charity Retail Data
Reliable, informative data is needed by all charity retailers to support their retail operation.
There’s plenty of ways data from charity retail systems is used and many charities know they’re not using it as effectively as they could. Kudos Software & Skyline Business Services are working together to help charity retailers harness the power of retail data. Here we share some of our experiences of working with charity retailers to increase income and support the goals of their organisation.
Gift aid as a percentage of sales is a Key Performance Indicator widely used by the sector and reported on the Charity Retail Association’s Annual Review. Your charity retail solution can provide you with RGA income per shop so you can identify shops with unusually low levels. RGA per stock category can identify shops where the GA is unbalanced. Both checks can be used to highlight areas for investigation and improvement.
Sales data that produces meaningful sales trends by shop, by department can help with optimising stock. Understanding how long to keep stock on rotation, by department, may mean keeping formalwear on rotation longer than women’s tops, for example, or giving more space to loungewear. Both are opportunities for our customers to increase sales.
Using data to help you with your pricing strategy is a winning formula, applying ‘the law of supply and demand’. A simple question every organisation focussed on income generation should ask regularly is: Can I sell the same item for more without adversely affecting the quantity sold? Charities can apply this when comparing similar shops across their network and checking the pricing policy is aligned, then acting if not. It’s not a snapshot of course, check and review sales income post the pricing change and act accordingly.
Data shows that menswear categories can be priced higher than womenswear; checking each shop against this metric can help to increase income.
Integrating online sales has been a huge trend since the start of the pandemic; it’s enabled charities to maximise income for unusual or high-value items. Using data to build understanding within the shop and sorting teams will help with decisions on where to place items for sale, and attributing sales back to shops from online sales incentivises that attention. Back to the data again and sales against target!
1. Having a charity retail system that can be configured to reflect the way you trade is a massive advantage. Find a solution, and a process, that provides reliable data in a format that you and your team can easily access and understand. Reporting by category and subcategory is essential to supporting the decisions charity retailers make to improve income.
2. Whilst subcategories are important too, many are a hindrance to your instore team and to getting that meaningful data you need. So, plan this carefully, your retail solutions provider can help you with this.
3. Check these reports by shop, by department and overall Month-on-Month regularly so you can see problems and act on them quickly:
a. Total sales
b. Average ticket value
c. Retail Gift Aid income
Also look for shining examples too, the data will highlight best practices for you to share throughout your retail network.
Remember collecting data is important but data analysis and action is business critical.
Kudos EPoS is proven to increase charity revenue and is an innovative and effective way to give your charity shop network a real advantage in the competition for donations, sales and volunteers. More charities are choosing Kudos because of the ease of use instore, effective reporting and insightful business intelligence.
Charlotte Charlton, Retail Operations Manager, St Oswald’s Hospice said “Implementing Kudos has been revolutionary; our shop managers can’t wait to receive the sales data each week and are empowered to make informed decisions from the data.”
About Skyline Business Services
Skyline Business Services are the UK’s leading charity retail consultancy and experts in making data work better for charities to enable good decision making and improving sales.