10 steps to prepare your business for seasonal sales periods
Businesses need to start preparing early for seasonal sales periods, to reach or exceed their sales goals, and create a positive customer experience. Follow these 10 steps to prepare your business for seasonal sales periods.
1. Choose the holidays you will participate in
The first thing you will need to do is decide which holidays your business will participate in. It is best to strategically choose the holidays that are going to have the highest impact for your business and your customers.
2. Develop your seasonal sales goals
Utilize business intelligence reports to review past holiday sales data. This will enable you to predict future sales success by reviewing sales over a specific time period and location. The report should also allow you to appropriately purchase stock based on predicted demand.
3. Determine your seasonal budget
Determine the investment needed for funding your business’s seasonal programs. This may range from hiring more staff, to allocating a marketing budget or product development. Money spent to improve the customer experience is an investment that will deliver a return if invested wisely.
4. Establish your seasonal promotions and products
Add seasonal products to better serve your customer’s seasonal needs. Holiday products should highlight the “new” and “limited-time” features that draw in your existing and new customers. If you don’t any have “new” products, why not bundle some together and promote them as a package deal!
5. Determine your business’s marketing campaign
Choose your ad channels strategically, especially during the holiday season.Marketing campaigns have a lot of components that need to be in alignment to achieve the most success, this is why it is vital to begin preparing ahead of time.
6. Streamline inventory operations with backordering to optimize sales
Prepare for the holiday season by utilizing backordering to convert sales orders into purchase orders and directly track the shipping status of those orders. Pre-ordering inventory and fulfilling orders on time will enhance your customer’s experience and optimize your seasonal sales results.
7. Map out your returns and exchanges policy
Create or modify your returns and exchanges policy for the seasonal sales period. Also determine a holding location for any returned goods so they can be examined before resale.
8. Create your fulfillment workflow
Prepare your fulfillment workflow to enable your business to fulfill orders faster,in greater volume and at lower costs. You should also consider using a third party company, such as Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA), as it will make the process more efficient, especially during high demand periods.
9. Take advantage of minimum order quantity
For wholesale businesses, take advantage of setting minimum order quantities during the holiday season. This will allow your business to reduce prices since you are selling in larger volumes. Experiment and see what works best for your business.
10. Prepare early for shipping success
Prepare your holiday shipping process in advance so your business operations are efficient and productive.