What to do With your Extra Inventory

By Steve Di Orio
Posted in Store Management
On December 25, 2015

When preparing for the holidays, retail store owners typically order extra inventory. Since items are in such high demand this time of year, it’s important to be able to meet the needs of customers to ensure they don’t go elsewhere. But once the holidays have passed, where do you put the extras? It’s important to have a backstock organization plan to keep good track of your inventory.

Utilize Warehouse Shelving

Warehouse shelving and other storage systems allow for ample space for extra inventory. This shelving can withstand heavy merchandise while keeping it visible and easy to find. You don’t want merchandise to get lost and forgotten due to overcrowded shelves.

Keep it Organized

This might sound like common sense, but the best way to sell the products from your backstock is to keep replenishing them on the floor. If your inventory isn’t organized, sales associates may not be able to find it and you will lose the chance of placing it on the floor and selling it.

Return to Merchandiser

If you simply have too much, or are no longer selling an item, see if the merchandiser will take it back. You likely created an agreement with them upfront to determine if this is an option.

Refill Floor Merchandise Regularly

Make sure employees are constantly checking on how much product is on the sales floor and filling in any holes frequently. If a shopper can’t find their size or the specific item they were looking for, there’s a good chance they will just walk away instead of asking an associate if they might have more in the back.

Keep Good Track of your Inventory

Unfortunately, when backstock is overflowing, this is an opportunity for employee theft. Regularly conducting audits of your inventory is a great way to stay on top of theft and fraud. If employees are aware of your strict guideline and know that you keep good track of your inventory, they will be much less likely to steal merchandise.

Put it on Sale

If you have leftover holiday items that you are having a hard time getting off the shelves, consider a markdown. Shoppers are looking for post-holiday deals, and marking down prices is always a way to move more product.

It can be discouraging to see all of the extra inventory after the holidays, but remember that you ordered a lot more than usual! Always try to return excessive extras to the manufacturer and keep excellent track of your inventory to not only avoid theft, but to ensure it is regularly being pulled from backstock and placed on the sales floor to sell.

Steve Di Orio

Steve Di Orio


Steve has been with Handy Store Fixtures for over 15 years. After becoming the Marketing Manager in 2006, he was named Director of Marketing. Steven earned his MBA from Montclair State University with a specialization in Digital Marketing in 2019. When not at work, he loves to travel, play golf, exercise, and talk all things search engine marketing and retail display tips.