christmas-store-222227_1920

The Christmas countdown is on! Shoppers are on a mission to complete their lists and retailers are starting to see foot traffic steadily increase. To help prep your business for a successful holiday season, we’ve put together a checklist of all things big and small that will help you and your team get ready for the rush.

STOCK UP

  • Cash desk supplies: Bags, pens, till tape, staplers, hold tags, extra cash float – these items tend to grow legs and disappear when things get busy, so make sure you’re stocked up. You may also want to increase your daily cash float, so you’re never caught off guard. Vend pro tip: Learn how to expertly track your cash float and petty cash using Vend’s cash management feature
  • Gift cards: Gift card sales skyrocket during the holiday season, so be prepared. Check out Plastic Printers who can fully customize the look of your gift cards. Display your cards on your cash desk to attract last-minute shoppers and people looking for stocking stuffers. Vend pro tip: Get gift cards set up in Vend in seconds.
  • Gift boxes: Order branded boxes for your customers to packages their gifts in. Consider charging a dollar or two for the box and donating the money to a local charity. If you choose a minimalistic design, you’ll be able to use any left over boxes post-Christmas too.
  • Hangers: With more product movement, you’re going to need more product on the floor so your staff aren’t constantly running to the back to check on sizes or colours. And that means more hangers. Don’t be afraid to over-order as you can always stock-pile them for later in the year. Vend pro tip: Run a product performance report on your best sellers to see what items you should order extra stock in. 
  • Cleaning supplies: With more foot traffic, comes more dirt. Make sure you have entry mats to catch slushy snow (or sand, depending on where you are in the world!), a good mop, and lots of window cleaner to keep your shop in tip top shape.

PREP YOUR SPACE

  • Decor: String up some lights and put out some fake snow. Holiday decor will get your shoppers in the giving spirit!
  • Rest stations: Holiday shopping can be exhausting. Set out a few chairs for kids or tired shoppers. For that added touch, try providing chilled water, phone chargers, or magazines.
  • Playlist: Put down the the Mariah Carey Christmas album and curate a festive playlist that suits your brand, but give it enough variety that you won’t drive your staff or customers nuts! Check out streaming services like Spotify or Songza.
  • Display return/exchange policy: Be sure to display your policies clearly at the cash desk, as well as on the receipt. Have your staff reinforce this during the checkout transaction, especially on any final sale items.

PREP YOUR STAFF

  • Hire: You’ll need some extra hands this time of year, so hire accordingly. Ask your current staff for trustworthy referrals to keep your culture strong. Vend pro tip: Vend U is a great resource to quickly get seasonal staff up to speed with your POS operations.
  • Schedule: This one is big. Make sure you have enough coverage at peak hours and schedule staff breaks. It can be easy to get caught up with customers and before you know it, no one has eaten lunch! It’s also likely you’ll be extending your opening hours, so a roster that ensure your staff stay fresh is important. Customers will often stay in your store until the last minute, so ensure you have scheduled enough time after your doors are closed to do a proper tidy and clean before the next day.
  • Host a pre-holiday staff meeting: Make sure your staff are prepared on product knowledge, store policies, and POS operations. Host an up-selling workshop and ask your team to share their favourite product pairings and add-ons. Make the meeting fun and festive to get your team excited to hit the sales floor!
  • Daily comms sheet: You’ll be busy chatting with customers and manning the cash desk as shifts rotate, so put up a daily comms sheet in the backroom to let your staff know about any special updates, store goals, shift schedules, break times, and coverage zones as soon as they come in.
  • Contests: Consider weekly contests with your team to boost their sales targets or customer info capture. This will help keep them motivated to go the extra mile. Vend pro tip: Use Vend’s intuitive reporting to help assess which products could use some love on the sales floor. 

ALWAYS BE ONE STEP AHEAD

  • Set-up extra registers: Avoid queues and open a second (or third) register to handle the increase in transactions. Check out Vend’s step-by-step guide to quickly setting up your new register.
  • Organize your sales and promotions: Plan your start and end dates for any special holiday sales and brief your staff ahead of time. Have promo signage printed and ready to go. Vend pro tip: Set up your promotion price books to save your cashiers time at check out.
  • Schedule your socials: To save time, pre-schedule your important posts on tweets, Instagram, Facebook, and blog posts throughout the holiday season.
  • Shipping deadlines: Clearly state your “order by” dates on your website to ensure all your customers get their gifts on time. Check your shipping provider for date guidelines.
  • Finish your holiday shopping: It’s not just about your customers – you need to enjoy Christmas too! Make sure you take a break, get your shopping done early, and make the most of a great holiday season. 

The post Prep your store for the holidays with our essential checklist appeared first on Vend Retail Blog.