A Tale of Two Gifts

Kellie Lefaive, President

With 2021’s holiday season thankfully in the rearview mirror, I cannot help but reflect on the continuous challenges that 2021 bestowed upon brands and retailers alike.  And with Covid still very much dominating headlines for 2022, supply chain, transportation, and inventory management issues remain critical hurdles for retailers and wholesalers alike.  And yet, consumer expectations have not changed.  We want our gifts and we want them now!

As it is for many of you, the holidays are a particularly hectic time in our chaotic house and the curse of last-minute Christmas shopping seems to be an annual trap we fall into.  This year was no different: our 15-year-old daughter announced on the 20th of December that she had not yet gotten a gift for her sister.

With a very limited time frame, we headed to the mall, in hopes of finding the ideal gift at the last minute. You can imagine the fun factor.  We wandered into a sophisticated, higher-end clothing store and my daughter started to point to a few outfits that even I approved of.  Now, for those that have a teenager, you can probably relate to the sheer joy that overcame me envisioning her in something other than the standard “tights and hoodie” uniform.  So much so that the exorbitant price tags did not register.  Unfortunately, this retail location did not have the right size in stock, and while the store clerk helpfully guided us to their online ecommerce site, they could not guarantee delivery until after the holidays. And, the clerk pointed out ruefully, there would be an additional delivery charge.

My vision of having at least one daughter dressing beautifully at our Christmas dinner vanished like a Toronto snowfall.

So, with the hopes of my kid dressing like someone loved her being shattered, we needed a new idea and fast. We decided the new goal was to find her a pair of earrings.  A trendy jewelry boutique was the first stop and to our delight the store not only had the right earrings in stock online, but could also guarantee delivery by the 24th. We snapped up the lovely (though pricey!) set and placed the order.

As promised, our purchase was delivered on time, set neatly and securely in the arms of our seasonal, decorative tin soldier that stands guard at our front door. The packaging was tidy, discrete, and sized so as to not give away the contents.

My daughter’s delight around the successful shopping trip was only eclipsed by her sisters’ declaration that she loved the gift. The whole experience left me thinking that only if the first retailer had ensured available inventory of their product, or had been able to expedite delivery to support those highly-motivated, last minute shoppers like our teenage daughter, they would have had a guaranteed sale.  Instead, it was a real missed opportunity for the retailer.

One Brand got the shopping experience right, creating delighted customer satisfaction; while the other missed an opportunity to make a sale and a positive brand connection.

It’s a lesson worth learning. At Go Direct we recognize the critical role that your Brand’s fulfillment partner plays.  Ensuring that your orders are fulfilled correctly and delivered on time is a critical part of your consumers’ experience with your brand. The timeliness and condition of your product when it is delivered will be the last and most significant interaction you will have with your customer.  It’s the last chance to earn (or lose!) their loyalty.

Go Direct specializes in creating customized solutions that help our clients deliver the experience that their consumers deserve.  Our fulfillment services whether it be for B2B, B2C or kitting/sampling projects, are founded in technology to ensure dependable, accurate and efficient solutions that deliver fulfillment every time.  Let us show you how we can help!

Kellie Lefaive, is the President & CEO of Go Direct. A Senior Executive with strategic planning, business development, operations, and divisional startup expertise. She has a strong understanding of technology integration and platform roll-outs. Kellie is a recognized leader, who is experienced in leading large and small-scale, multi-site operations. She has spent over half of her career working with CPG companies and major retailers create multi-channel strategies and omni-channel execution. Kellie can be reached at kellie.lefaive@godirectsolutions.com


Ready to develop the perfect solution for your long-term growth plan?