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'Tis the Season: A Holiday Checklist for Small Businesses

The holidays are a busy time for everyone, especially small businesses. If you're a small business owner, you know that the holiday season brings with it a whole host of things to do in order to prepare for the influx of customers and ensure that your business is looking its best. To help you out, the Cottage Grove Area Chamber of Commerce has put together a checklist of things you need to do to get your small business ready for the holiday season. Here's what you need to do:

1) Bring out the decorations

This is a no-brainer when it comes to getting ready for the holidays. Whether you go all-out with lights and garland or keep it simple with some evergreen wreaths, a little bit of holiday cheer goes a long way in making your business feel inviting. Plus, it lets customers know that you're open for business and ready to help them with their holiday shopping needs.

2) Prep for the holiday rush

The holidays are inevitably going to bring an increase in customer traffic, so it's important to be prepared. Make sure you have enough staff to handle the increased volume, restock any products that are likely to sell out, and have a plan in place for dealing with returns and exchanges.

3) Staff up with seasonal workers

If you don't already have enough staff on hand to deal with the holiday rush, now's the time to hire some seasonal workers. This will free up your regular employees to focus on other tasks and help ensure that your customers are getting the attention they deserve. Be sure to post any job openings in plenty of time so you can find the best candidates possible.

4) Offer a gift guide

Chances are, your customers will be looking for gift ideas when they come into your store during the holidays. Faire notes that 90 percent of holiday shoppers in North America are likely to try a new brand during the holiday season, which means helping them out by putting together a guide of great gift ideas is a smart idea. Not only will this make their shopping easier, but it will also increase the likelihood that they'll find something they love at your store. And who knows, they might even take some inspiration from your guide and buy something for themselves.

5) Seasonal marketing


Now is also a great time to update your marketing materials for the holidays. Make sure your website and social media accounts reflect any holiday sales or promotions you'll be running, and consider sending out physical mailers or e-newsletters with holiday discounts and coupon codes. Getting creative with your marketing will help spread awareness about your business during this key shopping period.

6) Use PDFs to promote offers

Offering discounts and coupons are great ways to entice customers to visit your store during the holidays, and one easy way to create promotional offers is by using PDFs. You can design visually appealing PDFs then embed them onto your website or blog or send them out via email marketing campaigns. Plus it's easy to manipulate or change PDFs using a free PDF editor tool

7) Giving back to the community

Now is also a great time to show some love to your community by giving back in some way. Whether it's donating products or services to those in need or hosting a food drive at your store, there are endless ways to get involved and give back this holiday season. Not only will this make you feel good, but it will also help raise awareness about your business.

8) Reel in the procrastinators

Not everyone does their holiday shopping early, and that's okay! You can still lure last-minute shoppers into your store by offering special deals and promotions specifically for them. This could include anything from giving an additional percentage off already-discounted items to offering free gift-wrapping services or expedited shipping. Whatever you do, make sure it's something that will appeal to the late shoppers so they'll choose your store over all the others.                                                                


The holidays are a busy but wonderful time of year, especially if you're a small business owner! By following our checklist, you can rest assured knowing that you've done everything possible to prepare your business for the holiday rush. From decorating your storefront to creating promotional offers using PDFs, we've got you covered. So sit back, relax, and enjoy the season knowing that your small business is ready for whatever comes its way!


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