It’s important to be proactive when it comes to the holidays. They bring a host of financial challenges and opportunities for small businesses. Let’s talk about three ways you can prep your business for the holidays, so that you’re able to have a profitable and satisfying holiday season, without stressing out.
Reflect on This Time In Past Years
Look back to your records to see what happened in your business in past holiday seasons. Which events, specials or sales, and products were the most profitable? If something didn’t go the way you planned, how can you improve on what you did the last few years? This will give you good data to help you focus your offerings this season.
If your business is relatively new, you can simply reflect on the past year and what’s been most profitable for you. Chances are you know what your best-selling products or services are. How can you make sure you have the resources to sell a lot of them? What strategies do you want to use to promote that offering during the holiday season?
Having access to clear financial records is extremely helpful when you’re doing business planning like this.
Plan Sales and Specials
Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday are coming up soon, as well as a host of other times when businesses typically offer sales or specials with their products. Consider whether you’d like to participate in these dates, and how your business is best suited to do that. Perhaps you can focus on promoting packages to up the dollar amount spent by each customer, or offer a deal on your bestselling offering.
Alternatively, you may decide not to participate in these dates, or to do so in a different way. Some small business owners choose not to take part in these events, because it doesn’t feel right to them, or because they choose to celebrate Buy Nothing Day. Even some larger businesses opt out, or take a different path. Deciem, a large skincare brand, holds an annual sale for the entire month of November, to discourage “hyper-consumerism.”
The choice is ultimately yours. Whatever sales schedule you decide to follow, you will also want to take into account your production timeline. Right about now is when many product-based businesses start beefing up their inventories. Here’s an article I wrote for product-based businesses on how to financially survive this process.
If you’re a service-based business or selling digital products, there may still be some considerations for you around your schedule during the holidays. If you’re providing 1-to-1 services, for example, how will your availability change during the holiday season? How can you allocate your resources to ensure you’re able to deliver and make a profit?
Prep for Events
You’ve likely signed up for whatever craft shows, expos, or web events you’ll be participating in during the holidays (or maybe you haven’t yet and now is a good time to think about that!). Now is the time to think strategically about what you can do to get the most out of these events. I wrote an article on upping your profit during holiday events which you can read here.
If this post was helpful for you, you might like checking out my free eBook, The Cash Flow Reboot Guide. This 9-page resource can help you brainstorm to get prepped for a profitable holiday season. Download it for free here.
Photo by Kira auf der Heide