With the right planning and preparation, your small business can effectively manage and even capitalise on any fluctuations in business over the Christmas period. 
 
Most small businesses experience some level of seasonality with peaks and troughs in sales occurring throughout the year. Some common causes include the weather, holidays, university terms and the economy. 
 
For some Christmas is their busiest time of year, but for others the seasonal period can be barren. 
 
If your business usually experiences fluctuations at the turn of the year, it’s important to prepare for how you’re going to manage them. 
 
Here are our top five tips for managing dips or peaks in business this Christmas: 
 
Review last year’s sales 
 
Analysing your business’ performance at this time last year can give you some idea what to expect this time around. Don’t forget to consider any anomalies caused by unexpected events like snow days or problems with suppliers and stock. Ideally, you should make a habit of reviewing your business’ Christmas performance early in the new year so you can budget accordingly for the next 12 months. 
 
Manage your cashflow 
 
Cashflow should be carefully managed throughout the year to account for any seasonality, including changing trends at Christmas. If business is usually slow, then you’ll want to save money made during busier periods to see you through. Meanwhile businesses that are busy over Christmas should make sure they have cash available prior to the festive period to invest in stock, advertising and marketing campaigns to help them make the most of an opportunity. 
 
 
Outsource work to a virtual PA 
 
If your business is busy over Christmas, then you may find that you need some extra help to stay on top of everything. Rather than falling behind on routine or administrative tasks, why not outsource work to one of Pink Spaghetti’s virtual PAs? We can provide your business with temporary support over the Christmas period, allowing you and your team to concentrate on maximising sales without falling behind on the day-to-day running of your business. 
 
Plan your marketing and promotions 
 
Whether you’re expecting a busy or quiet December, clever marketing campaigns and promotions can help to boost sales during the festive period. Offers, discounts, competitions and marketing campaigns should all be planned and prepared in advance. If you’re expecting to be busy, then having any website and social media content written and scheduled can help to save your team time and stress when the Christmas rush hits. 
 
Make the most of downtime 
 
If you’re expecting business to slow down over the Christmas period, then make plans to get the most out of the time. The Christmas period can be an opportune moment to plan and prepare for the new year. Catch up with any tasks you’ve been putting off, review your business or marketing plans for the new year and draft or schedule any upcoming email marketing campaigns or social media posts. 
 
For temporary support or help planning and preparing for the Christmas period, get in touch with your local Pink Spaghetti office. 
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