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The Product Entrepreneur Podcast

Oct 17, 2022

Running a successful product-based business involves more than just product selling. Business owners must strategically set goals, plan their purchases, and make informed marketing decisions based on customer needs at a given time. Using customer trends to inform decisions regarding what, how and when to sell is a key part of Inventory and Sales planning.

Inventory planning enables product-based businesses to have a more customer-focused approach to the business by buying products based on customer behavior. 

In this episode, Darlene Mitchell offers an in-depth insight into a business owner’s journey to creating an effective inventory and sales management system. Developing a clear road map, understanding seasonality, and using historical data to inform inventory purchase decisions are some of the key steps she emphasizes.

Darlene explores some of the common mistakes made by business owners in sales planning. She discusses:

  • Not having a sales plan
  • Not having an inventory plan
  • Not knowing how to transition with their customers

Darlene Mitchell is a profit strategist with several years’ experience in retail. She drives strategy and helps boutiques and brands develop their businesses.

Episode Highlights 

    • [01:35] Darlene’s introduction 
    • [03:07] Understanding the difference between Sales Management and Inventory Management
  • [04:03] Metrics/numbers you need to know in sales and inventory management
  • [08:32] Using customer insights to inform business purchases
  • [9:30] Why sales and inventory are important no matter the size of the business
  • [11:04] How your business infrastructure needs to look like to float
  • [14:40] Why having a clear roadmap is important for business planning
  • [16:10] Using seasonality as a technique for inventory planning
  • [22:55] How to set up an inventory management system
  • [24: 35] How to push your inventory to achieve your sales targets
  • [26:55] How to push your inventory to achieve your sales targets
  • [28:30] Using promotional strategies in inventory management
  • [31:10] Is a sales plan synonymous with a marketing plan?
  • [39:00] Adapting customer strategy to customer trends and needs
  • [42:05] Actions steps to build a multi-million product-based business



“If the customer will not buy it in the next six weeks, don't buy it because your customer’s going to buy it marked down.”

“If a product frequently sells, buy more of it.”

“Figure out when and why your customers are buying.”

“Customers are fickle so always test out new products. Test what is going to replace what you are currently selling.”

“What inventory management allows you to do is look forward. It focuses on what is about to happen to you.”

“Two mistakes made my business owners are not having a sales plan and not having an inventory plan.”

“Every product-based business owner should think to themselves, ‘Who is my customer? What are they doing? What do they need?”

“Your sales are the number you need to hit. The tactics which is your marketing is how you get there.”

Connect with Darlene Y Mitchell

Darlene’s Website

Darlene’s Instagram

Darlene’s LinkedIn



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