A few weeks ago one of the popular cable networks started advertising Christmas movies. Lots of folks thought it was way too early. After all, it’s not even officially fall yet.
But the fact is that if you are in business it really is time to plan for the holiday season. This applies even more if any part of your operation involves retail sales. It’s not too soon to get ready.
Cards and promotional material. If you send out holiday greetings to your clients, now is the time to design and order them. The same goes for any special advertising materials such as flyers or signs for your store. You should also consider whether you want to offer (or update) gift cards or certificates.
Extra help. Do you need to hire extra salespeople to handle the holiday rush? Looking for a VA to help with the overload so you can spend time with the family? Or maybe you need someone to cover the business while you take some time off.
Policies and procedures. Payment and return policies need to be in place. And you need to have plenty of shipping options as well. Customers need to be able to trust that they’ll receive their merchandise on time.
Inventory and listings. You don’t want to lose customers – or drive them to your competitors – by running out of popular items during the holiday shopping rush. Check with your suppliers to make sure you’ll have what you need in plenty of time. And test your product listings for function and accuracy, both online and in paper catalogs.
Atmosphere. Are your decorations and displays organized and ready? Do you have the right music available for background both in your store or office and for your online videos and presentations? Don’t forget to decorate your website as well. A festive background or banner picture is always a nice touch.
Extra content. Do you need to publish a gift ideas guide? These can take some time and effort to put together but often pay off in increased sales.
Advertising and marketing. Are your ads written? Have you decided on your holiday blog posts and social media content? Planning and organizing these things early will save time and stress during the busy season.
Don’t wait until it’s too late. Need help? Contact us.