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A Month to Month Guide on Holiday Merchandising for Garden Centers

holiday lanters

Even though it’s only a few months out of the year, you have to think about Christmas, Thanksgiving and Halloween seasons all year round when you’re buying for a garden center or nursery. The easiest way to tackle this is to break tasks down, month by month so you can stay organized and prevent a last minute rush to stock your shelves. Here’s a month to month guide to help you master your holiday merchandising for garden centers.

January: To make sure you have a clean slate and no leftover holiday décor, it’s a good idea to have a sale for the first three weeks after Christmas. For the first two weeks try offering seasonal décor at half price, then the last week offer 75% off. This should clear everything out so you can start fresh for next season. You should also start to think about what to carry next by attending America’s Mart and other Tradeshows.

February: While the Christmas Season is still fairly fresh in your mind, make note of what did and didn’t sell. If something flew off the shelf and was sold out well before Christmas, make sure you remember to order more of it for the next year. This is the time to think about ideas you want to carry on to the next season and themes or items you’d like to discontinue. If something that was new this year didn’t sell as well as you hoped, don’t be afraid to try it once more next season, with some tweaks and different placement it may end up selling.

March: Now that you know what you’d like to keep and throw away from last season, decide on specific themes and trends you’d like to use next season, like elegant, natural, or traditional with an edge. This is a great time to browse Pinterest for ideas look through garden décor catalogs for potential items to purchase. Even try visiting your competition, everything from Pottery Barn to Home Depot could provide some great ideas.

April-July: This is the key time to make your final decisions and purchases to ensure your holiday merchandise arrives well in time for the season. Some companies will run specials during this time to encourage you to buy early. Make sure to buy holiday specific décor, but plan to include some items that could work in the off season as well, like holiday colored frost proof pottery, lanterns, picture frames

August/September: Attend America’s Mart and other trade shows to get last minute deals on holiday décor.

September/October: By this time you should start receiving your orders. As they come in, start planning how you will be decorating and where each product will be placed.

October/November: Time to kick it into high gear and start decorating! These months will be full of decorating and changing items out as each holiday approaches. To make things less stressful, it’s easy to blend Halloween décor into Thanksgiving for a seamless transition. During this time you also want to have Christmas decorations available for early buyers. The week of Thanksgiving is generally the big start of season Christmas Rush. Make sure by this time you have fully made over your garden center for Christmas and leave a smaller area to put the rest of the fall décor on sale.

December: Sell sell sell! If anything isn’t selling, try putting it in a different setting where customers can imagine it fitting well at home.

Good luck with your holiday season! If you have any questions about seasonal pottery and lanterns, or general questions about holiday merchandising for garden centers, comment below or contact our sales team at sales@thepotterypatch.com.