Black Friday is always the kickoff to the holiday shopping season, and also when many businesses get a taste of what is to come over the next few weeks. Many are seeing a shift in the way consumers are purchasing. Instead of fighting in-store sales, customers are going online to purchase their sale items. And now businesses are choosing to start their sales on Thanksgiving Day, as opposed to the traditional Friday. And many people are just waiting until closer to Christmas to shop. Regardless of how customers or businesses choose to purchase, being prepared for the holiday season is a must to keep your business running smoothly and staying profitable.
Retail businesses that use plastic cards and holders also need to keep a healthy supply in stock over the holidays; even more than normal. Plastic gift cards are the easiest product to push, and they provide a high ROI for most companies, so letting them run out could put a huge strain on a business. Not to mention they are ongoing marketing pieces that can be recharged and reused. During the holiday season, getting plastic cards printed can be a challenge, so the farther away from Christmas you order your cards, the better your turn times and pricing will be. In fact, there are times when a business can place orders at the beginning of December, and not get their cards until January. The demand is that high this time of the year, so ordering early is imperative. Gift card holders are more easily accessible and sometimes even have stock, or off-the-shelf, options to cut down on turn times and cost. Another way to stay prepared is to stay stocked with every day, general supplies. Online companies need to keep shipping labels, packing slips, and any other items needed to fulfill orders. Nothing will shut down your business, and lose repeat business, faster than running out of shipping supplies. Customers will not purchase again if they cannot get their orders on time. Also having plenty of business cards, letterhead and envelopes on hand also helps with sales and office functions, keeping things running smoothly.Marketing is very important to drive in business; however, the best marketing will not help if you do not prepare for the business coming in. With just a few short weeks left in the holiday season, making sure you have the supplies you need will keep you up and running for a successful holiday season.