Research from the National Retail Federation report in 2020 reveals that 40% of shoppers start browsing and buying their gifts and decorations for the holidays before Halloween!
With September almost over, many businesses, especially retail, are fast approaching their busiest time of year.
As such, it’s essential to begin preparing early to ensure the company has time to attract its target customers, handle the large influx of customers in-store and on the website, and order goods for the expected increase in product demand.
For business owners needing some guidance on where to start, here are a few pointers that can help them prepare before the peak shopping season strikes.
Plan a Marketing Strategy
Whether you’re altering the current marketing plan or creating a marketing strategy from scratch. There’s still time to make a strong marketing plan to ramp up your company’s image and attract and engage customers to visit and buy from the business.
Here are a few key components to consider when modifying or creating a new plan of action for the next few months.
Review the company’s previous marketing strategy and note what worked to add to this year’s campaign.
Automate social media posts with posts, pictures, offers, videos, competitions, and so forth that represent the brand at its best. In doing so, a business can improve brand recognition amongst new and existing customers. While creating a stir about what the company has to offer its customers.
However, be mindful of selecting social media channels the company’s target market uses. For example, the younger demographic is more likely to be using Tik Tok and Instagram. As such, spending time and effort on creating posts for Facebook could be a waste.
Post helpful content and guides on a company blog or brochure to reveal the company’s expertise and build trust with customers.
Creating a marketing strategy that works can often be a full-time job. This is why it could be worth hiring an in-house marketeer or an external expert marketing team to take care of this business area.
Hire Extra Help
The sooner business owners begin hiring additional help, the easier it will be to trial and train newcomers in time to assist during the peak shopping period.
You can post a help wanted sign in the window of your business, or otherwise, send a post out on Facebook or on a recruitment platform. However, it’s essential to clarify whether the job is seasonal or long-term in the advert.
Experience and behaviours to look for when hiring help include an ability to work well under pressure, a bright, polite, and helpful attitude towards others, and the ability to sell products.
In doing so, company owners can be confident they’ve hired assistants who will offer a friendly and efficient service to buyers over the holidays.
Pre-Plan Holiday Hours
To ensure there’s enough staff working during the holidays, try to create and post the holiday schedules asap.
This will allow employees to swap and change shifts to work around their schedules. And it gives company owners the confidence there will be enough people to work during the business’s busiest season.
Sales Centred Huddles
Try to make time for sales-centred team meetings each morning to divert each employee’s focus on making customers happy and their buying journey effortless.
Staff should be inspired and trained to build rapport with customers, identify upsell opportunities, and make quick transactions.
Team meetings surrounding sales will help improve each assistant’s skills in the art of sales in the run-up to the holiday.
Organize Seasonal Decor
Source the businesses Halloween and Christmas decorations now to ensure they are intact and working when it’s time to put them up.
In doing so, business owners can fix and replace broken decor in time. Or, if the decorations appear outdated, replace them altogether.
Decorating the business’s website is also an important area to consider. For example, company owners could contact the website manager to add pumpkins to the visuals a week before Halloween.
Holiday decor is a great way to welcome and entice customers inside a business. Celebrating the season spreads cheer and can enhance the business’s visibility to the public too.
Lastly, as a company’s sales are expected to rise during the holidays, it’s essential to research and purchase stock in advance.
Stocking up on popular merchandise will ensure the customer gets what they need. And, the business doesn’t miss out on any opportunities to make a sale.
The most crucial pointer, which all the above tips include, is to plan for the peak shopping season as soon as possible. Preparing in advance will save company owners from being bogged down with numerous tasks around the holidays. And ensure a fluid and efficient customer experience during those busy times.