Should you open your small business during the festive season?

Open your small business during the festive season

Should you open your small business during the festive season?

Should you open your small business during the festive season? This is a question many people are asking. The past two years small business owners have been challenged with forecasting and planning more than than at any other time in living memory. So trying to decide on what to do during the Christmas–New Year period is fraught with conflict.

While some form of normality is now being established in many states, some businesses have the potential to reap the rewards of a rejuvenated festive season, while others will be looking forward to a well-earned rest. How you decide what you do is based on a number of factors.

If you are in an industry that would typically benefit from increased seasonal trading potential, or in a sector that has a traditional Christmas lull, it’s important to consider the pros and cons. Whatever you decide, you need to put the right strategies in place. 

Here are our top 4 tips to help you decide if you should open your small business during the festive season

  1. Work out the pros and cons of closing vs opening

  • Look at the costs (e.g. increased staffing or transport costs) vs the demands (will there be demands that outstrip the cost of supply).
  • What are the limiting factors? Meaning those areas you might be limited by if you open/are really busy, such as stock, supplies, staff.
  • Look at the best and worst case scenarios – too busy, not busy enough.
  • What are your competitors doing?
  1. Realistically forecast demand

What is the likelihood there will be demand for your services and where will it come from? For example, will it be from your usual client base or is there an opportunity to pick up new customers because your competitors are closed. Take the time now to check in with your customers to see what they are doing over the break. Will they be around and want to use your products/services? You might want to run a poll on your socials to see if your customers think you should keep your small business open over the Christmas–New Year period.

  1. Get your staffing requirements sorted

What are the staff implications if you decide to open over the Christmas–New Year period? If you’re in the retail or hospitality industry for instance, you will likely need additional support that might not be easy to find in the current employee market. Find out what your staff plans are. 

  1. Communicate with your customers

Amid all of the lockdowns and rule changes, businesses opening and closing, it’s likely many of your customers will still be a little uncertain about what’s actually going on. So communicate with them about your business, and the plans for the weeks and months ahead. Many will also, understandably, still be nervous about COVID-19, so reassure them by detailing the prevention measures you’re taking to ensure they have as safe a time as possible when they’re engaging with your business. 

Should you decide to open your small business during the festive season make the most of the decision and whatever you do make notes and learn from it for next year.

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