The holiday season is fast approaching, but it may look a bit different this year. When the pandemic hit us earlier this year, it dramatically changed the way we communicate, work, and shop. Social distancing and self-quarantine are now everyday expressions and certain new words like zoombombing have been added to the dictionary this year. With Western Australia’s hard border, this holiday season we will see a lot fewer people traveling out of state or overseas.
As everyone continues to get through COVID-19, small businesses have already faced unprecedented challenges and the holiday season appears to bring plenty of its own. However, in a difficult environment, there are ample opportunities for small businesses to drive revenue through the holidays.
Here are a few tips to help small businesses drive growth.
Make a List
Before the craziness of the holiday season begins, make an organised list of things you need to do to be prepared. Small businesses need to identify staffing gaps and fill them with permanent or seasonal employees. The workforce looks different this year than in previous times so there might be some shifts this year when it comes to staffing due to JobKeeper/JobSeeker and less working holidaymakers in the state. Create holiday schedules to ensure you have enough coverage to plan for your hours of operation. Next, make sure you do a stocktake of your inventory and order new stock well in advance as shipping times take longer than they have in the past. Lastly, meet with your accountant to do some scenario planning and cash flow forecasting. Think of your best-case scenario, worst-case scenario, and most likely scenario for your sales and use these forecasts to help you make important decisions about your opening hours and staffing.
Leverage your Website
If you haven’t already maximized the use of your website then now is the best time. Each year, thousands of Western Australians shop online for Christmas gifts, food, decorations, and even alcoholic beverages they will need for the holiday season. This year, the trend is predicted to increase significantly. In response to lockdowns and business closures many small businesses have already optimised their online presence to remain competitive and still reach their customers. You may have already noticed an increase in website traffic without doing any updates but now it’s more important than ever to shift your attention to the customer online shopping journey. Display your products and services in a visually appealing manner, ensure your website is easy to navigate, display contact information, store hours, locations and include details about delivery options you offer. If you are located in a central location such as the CBD try to use offers like free local delivery to help boost your sales within a certain radius of your location and make the customer journey more enjoyable.
Spruce your Social Media
Many small businesses have reported that they are getting a higher percentage of sales through social channels. It’s even more reason to focus on the content you promote on your social channels. Social media offers flexibility and instant engagement, so, it’s a great platform for small businesses to utilise to connect directly with their customers.
These are just a few tips to help you get prepared for the first holiday season since the pandemic. The holiday season can be a stressful and chaotic time, however, to make it enjoyable, remember to slow down for a minute and recognise the positives. For more tips and work strategies, get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone (08) 6153 0036 and we will assist you.