Tell Your Customers
And tell them early! Get the word out there on your plans, whether they be special sales, big events or simply extra opening hours.
Be sure to use all your marketing channels to get the message out, and don’t forget to update your website to reflect any specific products or services you’re offering. Now is the time to ramp up your marketing efforts, as you need to stand out amongst the throng of businesses competing for your customer’s attention. Best to get in early to maximise the exposure of this important period, as this competition will grow ever more fierce as Christmas closes in.
Oh, and make sure your site is mobile optimised. More on that later.
Are you expecting an explosion in foot traffic over the period? Any retailer will see an uptick in traffic, but many other industries will need extra staff to cover increased activity. Although it’s difficult to anticipate how much by, and when this uptick will occur, can you afford to not cater to your customer experience by understaffing?
Also, given that permanent staff will want to take their own Christmas leave over this period, chances are using temp agencies and seasonal staff could be a viable problem solver.
Speaking of leave, if staff are going on leave, get them to let you know their plans as far in advance as possible so you can plan accordingly.
Supply And Demand
The season’s starting and you’ve got all your stock ready to go, but have you got plans in place if everything flies off the shelves, or alternatively what you’ll do if they don’t? Also, is it best to tie up your cash liquidity by investing in stock that’ll be sitting on the shelf for a while, or is it better to organise an ‘as needed’ strategy?
It’s worth considering.
Manage Customer Expectations
Are you shipping products? If so, then making sure customers are aware of cut off dates for regular and express shipping is absolutely crucial. If your business is a pub and you’ve got limited spaces available for Christmas functions, better let your potential customers know to book early to secure their places! An extra bonus here, is that it ties into several of the points above, allowing you to organise.
If possible, be as flexible with customers as possible. Going that extra mile can go a long way to creating word of mouth; free marketing gold.
Make Your Website Mobile Friendly
By now you’ve probably already done this but if you haven’t, now’s the time. Web browsing on smart devices continues to grow in Australia and the number of people who will do at least some of their Christmas shopping or event organising online, will easily be the majority. Making your website mobile optimised will make things simpler for your customers, and thereby making things simpler for you.
If not now, how about making it a new year’s resolution? Your business will thank you.
We understand that cashflow can be an issue around the festive season, be it due to purchasing extra stock, closing invoice gaps, marketing efforts or seasonal staffing. Give us a call to see if a term loan could be right for your business.
Learn more about unsecured small business loans from Moula.