Although it may seem too early to start getting excited for Christmas, in reality it’s just around the corner. Many are already making plans to visit the German markets, mince pies are beginning to appear in shops and we’re waking up in the morning to darkness and frost.
Now Halloween and Bonfire Night are out of the way, people will gradually start getting into the festive spirit. That means you should begin getting your business ready!
According to an article by the Centre for Retail Research, “many retailers make more than half of their sales and profits in the 3 months before Christmas,” and it’s not just shops that benefit from this time of the year. The hospitality sector also turnover huge amounts from people feasting, travelling and drinking during their time off.
Here are some tips on how to make the most of Christmas 2015.
Lots of people are starting to think about buying presents. When browsing around shops they will be taking note of appealing products which they think a family member, friend or lover may like. You therefore need to think about ordering new Christmas stock now. If someone comes across an attractive item in your store, they may be tempted to get it there and then or they might consider it for a short time and come back. How devastating would it be if this person were to re-visit your shop in the hope of buying their desired item, only to find it’s sold out? Unfortunately, if this situation occurs they may be forced to go elsewhere.
Hint: Put some of your bestselling Christmas items in your store window so people are attracted to your shop as soon as they wander past. Organise and prepare.
In the run-up to Christmas, people start going on the hunt for cosy restaurants, pubs and hotels so you need to make your establishment look appealing. Decorate the outside of your business with tinsel and fairy lights so that it stands out against all of your competitors and you will be sure to attract people inside.
Deals and Offers
During this time of the year, people will also be visiting different towns and cities across the UK to see alternative Christmas markets and shop in a new location, why not take advantage of this by putting on festive deals? Everyone spends so much money during this period that any offers and savings are highly favoured. Offer two main courses for the price of one and some drink deals too so people can rehydrate before hitting the town again.
To ensure people come back time and time again, wow them. If you own a restaurant you could create a menu featuring tasty Christmas favourites. Alternatively, if you own a pub or bar you could get creative and add some special winter warmer cocktails to your menu.
Many people who are out shopping will stumble across businesses which they think look appealing. However, you don’t want to leave it down to luck that someone will find yours. Marketing is a really great way to encourage people to specifically seek you out.
Make the most of your website and update it to include all of your latest deals and offers. You could also promote any new clothes, dishes, or drinks you have available for the Christmas months. Marketing isn’t just based online though, you should also get some flyers printed and hand them out to passers-by. There’s nothing better when it’s cold and wet outside than being invited in to shelter and warm up whilst eating, drinking or seeking out a new Christmas outfit.
Make your business present by upping social media campaigns and encouraging people to like and follow you. At this time of the year, there’s lots going on so capture people’s attention and stand out from other businesses similar to yours by utilising every marketing channel available.
Is it time to start thinking about hiring some new staff? Although you may not be mega busy yet, this time will definitely come. Don’t leave it to the last minute to get some seasonal employees because by the time they start, they won’t be trained enough to serve your customers in the best way.
You need to carefully calculate how many extra members of staff you think will be needed during this time. Take a look at holiday requests and create a timetable detailing when your existing employees will be working well in advance. This will help you and them plan for Christmas.
If you would like any funding so that you can buy some extra stock, hire new employees or market to prospective customers, Capify can help. We offer responsible, flexible and fast finance to hundreds of businesses who want to get prepared for the Christmas period. We could raise you from £3,500-£500,000. Our innovative online application will also give you a decision about how much can be acquired in just 60 seconds!
Here’s to a profitable and merry Christmas.
If you would like more tips about how to have a successful end to 2015, download our free Christmas Guide. Click here or on the banner below.