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Horti-Zombies Come Alive!

Finding someone to blame for our woes helps somehow don’t you think? The weather, the economy, the fickle consumer, the grower, the banker, the liberal media, the conservative media, the government, the…oh those have all been covered. Well let’s talk about our own problems then.We aren’t happy with our results so how happy are we with our efforts? Oh, well, maybe there is a problem. And someone else to blame.Well the economy was bad and we didn’t know where it was heading or what to do. We held back on spending money because it might not help. We went to a conference to talk with others about what they were doing and they weren’t doing anything different so we didn’t either. We stayed at  home instead of going somewhere to learn something because what we already knew wasn’t working any more. Whooooaaahh. What did I just say? What I said is that we were indeed Horti-Zombies in the Zombieconomy. So whatcha gonna do about it? Sit there and rot?

A lot of people were asking me early in the year how I thought spring would turn out. I repeatedly answered – great through Mothers Day weekend and maybe one more, but after that all bets are off and you had better have your inventory in control. So what happened? In most areas of the country its been cooler and wetter than normal – usually good for the gardening business late in the spring. But not this year. Consumers believed the press when they said to hold onto their money and buy only what they needed. They believed some of our government officials who said to cut the spending on business travel. They believed the vast majority of retailers (including garden centers) who gave them discounts on stuff they really wanted and were waiting for a reason to buy. Consumers benefited in even the hot category of edibles which were routinely promoted to them at discounted prices. Transactions were actually up for a good while, yet average transaction sales dollars plunged, partially as a result of those discounts.

Our customers are tiring of our tiredness, and they’re proving it by holding onto their money. But frugal fatigue is setting in. Consumers consume, and they want to want. That’s what they do. They’re ready to buy when we can give them a good reason to. So what do people do when they already bought what they wanted on sale? That’s right. Nothing, but wait for someone to help them discover something else to want. Even the thrifty are suffering.

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One Response

  1. Apology – A reader informed me that a Possibly Related Post (automatically generated) appeared under this blog post that was possibly offensive. And I agree that it was offensive. I figured out how to remove these from this point forward. It won’t happen again.

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