Posted by: Ashley Choate
At long last, the 4th quarter is upon us. For business owners, this time of year is both nerve-wracking and painfully exciting, since it provides them with the chance to either drive sales totals to new and more glorious heights or, at least, to help them recover from any losses brought on during the first three quarters of the year.
Regardless of pending success or dreaded losses, smart business owners know how important preparing for 4th quarter sales can be. Preparing for 4th quarter should be at the top of every business owner’s to-do list, because, as every entrepreneur knows, wasting good opportunities is the antithesis of good business sense.
Below are some of the key items business owners can focus on to ensure that this 4th quarter is the best it’s ever been.
Tis the Season
The holiday season brings out the gift-giver in nearly every consumer (scrooges excluded, of course). There’s no shame in ensuring your business has the best gift ideas and the most attractive marketing campaigns leading up to the holidays. Preparing for 4th quarter means creating promotional events, sales opportunities, coupons, and/or social media advertisements that will draw shop-happy consumers towards the gifts they really want–which, of course, are in your shop window, virtual or otherwise.
Your sales team is a big part of any seasonal event. They should be rewarded for their efforts in pushing sales numbers as high as possible. Create an incentives program to encourage employees to do their best, either in terms of providing the best service possible to customers or in pushing merchandise in that crafty way that only salespeople can pull off. Show sales staff that their talents are valued, and they will work twice as hard to ensure the success of the business’s 4th quarter sales numbers.
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Set Realistic Expectations and Train Staff to Meet Them
In preparing for 4th quarter success, business owners have to be careful to set realistic goals for their staff to meet. More importantly, they have to make sure employees are prepared to meet those goals. Training on how to upsell items or provide quality customer service are essential when revving up for the holiday season. Staff members should also be made aware of the step-by-step plan for meeting goals, including online sales plans, marketing campaigns, and upcoming sales. They can further encourage sales by sharing gift opportunities with family and friends across social media.
Preparing for 4th quarter is a process not to be taken lightly. Business owners who have not set plans in place should get started immediately to ensure they don’t miss out on all the potential this time of year brings.
Already, industrious mothers, fathers, sisters, and brothers are beginning to plan for Halloween fun, Thanksgiving dinners, and Christmas/Hanukkah/Kwanzaa celebrations, among others. Make sure they’re aware that your business has the products or services they need to make this year’s holiday season the best one yet.