While many franchisees plan for economic downturns,...
Holidays are a busy time for many Canadian franchise businesses. Research firm Accenture reported that Canadians are expected to spend about 17 percent more over the 2016 holidays than they did in 2015, spending an average of $844 per person (https://newsroom.accenture.com/news/majority-of-canadian-consumers-say-retailers-reputation-important-to-their-purchasing-decisions-this-holiday-season-annual-accenture-survey-reveals.htm).
As great as this news is for Canadian businesses, holiday spending does pose challenges to any franchise. Here is what you should know to keep your franchise in the black and on top of the game.
Eye your inventory
One of the worst situations for a franchise to face during this time is the inability to meet consumer demand because of low supply. Review your inventory from the holiday period last year and plan in advance as much as possible. You cannot always anticipate demand because trends in products and services change, but you should be able to forecast minimum supply levels by looking at last year's holiday sales data and comparing it with your sales figures from this year so far.
Think about what customers are looking for
While many Canadians are expecting to spend more over the holiday season, many others are actively seeking discounts and sales. Use careful pricing to keep both current customers and newer ones happy. You will need to review the sales from last year to be the most successful at this. Look at which pricing worked and what turned off customers, and make sure you're providing at least the same value as your direct competitors. See if there is a way to adjust your pricing to offer more value to your customers while still hitting the necessary profit margins, as pricing is key when it comes to getting shoppers away from your competition and into your store.
Consider the weather
Weather can be pretty brutal in Canada during the winter holidays, so be prepared to combat its effects. Make sure your online store is ready to handle and fulfill orders in case customers cannot get out to your location, and have backup plans for situations in which employees are unable to get to work.The holiday season in Canada can give your business a tremendous boost, but you have to plan ahead and be ready to make the most of this opportunity. Remember that the holidays are a great time for getting new customers to walk through your door, and with the right moves, you will see them again even after the holidays are over.