Ask an Expert: Lapin & Me

We asked Madeleine from Lapin & Me to tell us a little bit about how she prepares for her busy holiday season.

For several years, Lapin & Me has sold a charming combination of vintage and new products for children and fun-loving adults. Madeleine’s a pro at planning for the holidays, and is willing to share what has worked for her business.

When do you begin increasing your inventory and by how much?

Planning starts early in the year, and products are ordered at the beginning of the year. It steps up in September, with last minute orders and adding to the Christmas selection. Main Christmas orders are also delivered at this time. Always have a plan or back-up product, as you may be let down on a delivery you had been expecting.

What promotions do you run during the holidays?

We run a series of promotions every year, because we know there is a huge choice for customers out there. We often do spontaneous promotions, pre-warning on Facebook and Instagram. We might offer free delivery, % discount codes or a special offer on a certain product. Last years promotion was “12 days of Christmas,” so we had a deal a day for 12 days.

Have there been some promotions that didn’t go at all like you expected?

They vary every time, sometimes you can run an offer and no one takes advantage, and a couple of days later you will get lots of orders, none of which took advantage of the offer! Some planning ahead is needed, you don’t want to offer something you then can’t deliver.

How frequently do you post during your holiday promotions?

You don’t want to over-kill a promotion and make it look like desperation, so don’t overdo it! Always keep an eye on the competition as well, it’s vital to see what else is going on out there.

Are specific shopping days important for your business?

Yes, they can always be busy but again, you can always be surprised.

How do you handle urgent shipping requests, or orders that are too late for holiday delivery?

We always aim to offer service above and beyond, so we do whatever we can to ensure an order is where it is meant to be. Always let customers know your cut-off times and delivery dates for international shipping.

What do you do to relax after the holiday rush?

It’s always such crazy time, it takes a few days to unwind and try and switch off. Every year I plan a getaway, but it hasn’t happened yet.

Do you have any other advice for sellers who are prepping for their first holiday season?

Get organized, often we have found there is one must-have products that sells out - always have a back up product! And try and enjoy, it is stressful but it is also a fun time of year.

Get started on your holiday shopping list at Lapin & Me.