The Markdown Calendar in a Late Spring

by Steve Pruitt

AsktheExpertsQ: Since my spring sales got off to such a late start, do you think I should move up my markdown calendar? And if so, how soon should I start marking down to clear all of the inventory that I think I will be left with?

A: Good question — I see two possible answers:

1) You need to stay in the markdown cycle of the season. Other stores around you have experienced the same selling issues you have. As a result, markdowns could come quicker than normal or than you originally thought. Don’t get too far behind this cycle. Early markdowns are like marketing dollars in that early markdowns will lift sales.

2. This is about the math. Measure the Total Insight, which is the combination of On-Hand and On-Order at Retail. Next, subtract your Planned Sales and Markdowns from the Insight. Lastly, compare the balance of Insight to the end of season Inventory Plan. If the net is positive, this represents a potential markdown liability. If your ending Insight is positive, go back to answer 1.

I hope this helps, and if you have any questions feel free to email me: