Retailers - Use the heatwave to boost profits

The UK is in the middle of a heatwave - and retailers can use it to turn a profit.

A combination of the good weather and Andy Murray’s Wimbledon win have resulted in huge leaps in sales of fresh meat, barbecues, wine, and similar products - but retailers in every field stand to benefit from the heat. We have compiled some top tips to help you boost sales during the sun.

Make a lunchtime push

Lunchtime is the key period for retailers in the sun. Rather than eating at their desks, employees are far more likely to head out to the park or the High Street. This has a number of key implications for your business, perhaps the most important of which is that you need to ensure you have sufficient staff on hand during the lunchtime rush. This is, of course, particularly important if you deal in food, but the principle remains the same regardless of the goods you are selling.

Spruce up your shopfront

A good-looking shopfront should be a priority all year round, but it becomes even more important during periods of good weather. Consumers are likely to be less forgiving of a tatty shop in the sun, and it will appear even more incongruous now. Take some time to give your shopfront a makeover, introducing some colour and ensuring that everything is clean and presentable.

Run giveaways

Everyone wants an ice cream during the sun - so why not give them away? Think about items you might be able to give to potential customers in an effort to entice them into your shop. Items that are explicitly weather-related are likely to perform best here, but try to consider items that also have a direct link with the products your business sells.

Take your business outside

Your customers will be outside during this period of good weather, and it is important that you are there too in order to find them. Consider ways that you can take your business outside. This could be as simple as standing outside your premises offering samples, where applicable, or handing out flyers detailing seasonal promotions. Alternatively, if you run a business in which this might be appropriate, you could consider visiting your nearest park or other place in which workers on their lunchbreak are likely to congregate, as discussed above. Hand out samples or flyers here, remembering that employees are much more likely to be outside during the breaks - and, as people simply tend to be more cheerful in the sun, are more likely to be receptive to your advances.

Don’t forget online

Contrary to popular belief, online sales need not suffer during the warm weather. Indeed, in April 2011 the warm weather and the Royal Wedding were determined to be the key factors leading to a sharp rise in online trading volumes.

It is important, therefore, that you do not forget your online presence during the sun. There is a number of ways in which you can make online work for you. You might consider running promotions on social media that connect the online and offline worlds. You could, for example, offer a discount to customers who repeat at the checkout a sun-related phrase that you have broadcast on social media. You might give your website a seasonal makeover, introducing some summer colour to your storefront. Alternatively, why not introduce seasonal discounting or other promotions on your online shop?