This is a guest post from our friends at Kabbage.
The holidays are right around the corner, and as a business owner you have a lot of preparing to do. You need to stock up on inventory, plan your holiday parties, promotions and sales, as well as, hire extra employee help. This time of year is especially hard for small business owners because, and a little extra help is needed to stay a float. So now is the time to see how Kabbage can help you prepare your business for a very merry, and busy, holiday season!
When it comes to the holidays there are three main things you need to worry about funding for:
- Marketing: When it comes to holiday marketing, creating and utilizing a strategy can help you stay organized and increase conversion rates. You can get creative and try to stand out from your competitors by adding personalized touches (like handwritten notes) to loyal customers. You can also have random pop-up sales that are likely to draw in new clients. Whatever you do, make sure that you spend your marketing budget wisely. Don’t go overboard on social media ads because there are a lot of other, inexpensive ways to advertise your business. You could use some of your extra funds to launch local radio or television ads as well! Use your Google Analytics account to discover where most of your online traffic is coming from and then focus your marketing efforts on those platforms and channels.
- Inventory: Making sure you have the necessary inventory is one of the most important things you can do to prepare yourself for a successful holiday season. Every year, consumers rush from store to store and website to website looking for the perfect gift in the right size and color. If your store runs out of inventory, your revenue will suffer. Be proactive by reaching out to your vendors now so you can ensure that you have a fully stocked inventory when Black Friday rolls around. If you’re not already using a dedicated inventory program, you can also keep track of inventory through ShipWorks built-in reports feature.
- Employees: During the holiday season, you are probably going to need some extra help around your store or office to make sure everything continues to run smoothly. Usually, 20 to 40 percent of sales in retail stores takes place within the last two months of the year, so it might be the right time to look into hiring a bookkeeper, a customer service representative, a social media manager, an inventory manager or an IT specialist to take the extra pressure off of you!
Don’t procrastinate any longer, create a holiday business plan and decide how much extra working capital your business will need to turn this holiday season into your greatest success yet!