The Jackson Area Chamber of Commerce would like to provide these helpful holiday season preparation basics to consider. It’s a good idea to have your plan in place and tested before your holiday selling season starts. Planning now gives you more time, greater flexibility, plus happier customers and employees later.
- Break out your budget and review it. Make necessary modifications now instead of scrambling in late November.
- Start hiring and training the holiday staff. Don’t wait. New employees need time to become proficient before the rush hits.
- Work out your promotions, marketing and line up your advertising. Determine price matching and special order policies.
- Take a look at your return policy and consider extending any 30 day limits.
- Plan your store merchandise setup. Have a strategy for condensing product as it sells down and won’t be restocked. A little work now means a better looking and shopper friendly store later.
- Design a holiday shopping theme for your store. Your atmosphere and décor should enhance your shoppers’ experience and make them enjoy visiting, and buying, at your store.
- Start stocking up on important customer service supplies like bags, receipt tape and gift certificates.
- Perform maintenance needed now. Give the restrooms a coat of paint. Replace any worn mats, bad carts, or burnt light bulbs. You will need to continue maintenance throughout the season, but take care of the big things now.
- Prepare your after holiday clearance strategy.
- Figure out how you will handle after Christmas returns from customer service, to rewrapping, to restocking. Advanced planning for returns can actually improve sales when the buying customers aren’t competing with the returning customers for your employee’s time.