Developing products that sell takes a discipline of moving through the 3 stages of product development: Exploration, Elimination and Execution. Taking shortcuts during any of these stages will be reflected in your sales results.
If you haven’t yet had a chance, you might be interested in taking some time to read the two blog posts in this 3 part series:
- Part 1-Exploration: 3 Stages of Product Development; Explore. Eliminate. Execute.
- Part 2-Elimination: 3 Stages of Product Development; Explore. Eliminate. Execute.
Stage 3 of Product Development: EXECUTION
All three legs of a stool need to be solid and standing steady as a unit in order for a product to be successful. The 3rd stage of product development is often where most designers put their energy. It is a very important stage, but it won’t be as successful as it could be if the other stages (or legs of the stool) aren’t as strong. Let’s talk about stage 3, execution.
BUILD OUT A BUDGET FOR THE PRODUCTS BEING DEVELOPED AND RELEASED.
We covered doing the cost analysis in stage 2 and how costing can eliminate some of the products from moving forward in a product release. In stage 3, it is important to have built a budget based on your forecasting of your sales. This will help you to have a clear understanding of the capital investment it will take for the initial stocking purchase order and for the follow-up reorder of products that you will need as the stock sells through.
DOUBLE-CHECK THE COST ANALYSIS.
Check and check again that you have estimated the costing correctly. You won’t be in business long if you have a great selling product that makes you no money or even loses you money.
WILL YOU HAVE ENOUGH CAPITAL?
Oh, that darn money conversation. With my first business, I clearly remember sitting across from a loan officer at a bank while he asked, “are you doing this business to make money, or are you doing it for your jollies?” Valid question, don’t you think? It is a good idea to be clear on this before you start executing the spending of any amount of money.
PLACE YOUR ORDERS AND BUILD OUT YOUR RELEASE TIMELINE
Making sure that all of the dominos will fall at the right time is key to execution. Nunn Design places orders so that all of the inventory comes in at the same time or is staggered in a way that the warehouse can manage the product as they come in. Eliminating overwhelm of the warehouse team is important to all of us.
BUILD OUT A MARKETING PLAN.
Write out a plan of how you are going to tell people about what items you have to offer. Even if you just jot down your plan on a scrap of paper, it will get you started in the process of a marketing plan. For Nunn Design, we have many avenues and platforms for marketing our products. We have our website, blog, tutorials, catalogue, videos, Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest and our wholesale email newsletters. All of these platforms work together to help market our products and help us execute our product development.
Nunn Design’s finishing stages of execution is in prepping the new inventory. Prior to a release, we stockpile the inventory that we projected in the sales forecast so that it is bagged, upc-coded, labeled and organized alphabetically in the warehouse making it ready for shipment.
I hope that you have enjoyed and maybe learned something from this series of blog posts. All of us at Nunn Design love what we do and we hope it shows in our product selection, quality, marketing and customer service. Nunn Design couldn’t be the business that we are without the commitment and loyalty of our customers.
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