How a franchisee can plan for their most stress-free Christmas yet.
If you’re a hospitality industry franchisee, then you’re well aware that Christmas really is the most wonderful time of the year. But while the festive period can bring a flurry of activity, it’s important to plan ahead to make sure you maximise potential sales over Christmas and into the New Year.
It’s vital to plan for the busy Christmas season, as well as the months that follow it.
Here are top five pre-New Year’s Resolutions for franchisees to have yourself the most stress-free Christmas yet.
Yes, you’ve been rushed off your feet and you haven’t had time to think about data – but it’s now more important than ever that you do. Gather customer insights during the busy season, while you have a large sample size, by analysing your Point of Sale system data or the insights from your customer loyalty system. This way, when things quieten down, you’ll have a better understanding of how to attract repeat customers.
Don’t have an electronic loyalty scheme? It’s time to talk to your franchisors about investing in one in the New Year! Mobile applications are a convenient and accessible way to do this, rewarding your customers while learning more about their spending habits in the process.
It’s important to recognise that holiday periods are some of the busiest, and you’ll be maximising trading opportunities at this time. In fact, some retailers can do up to 20-30 per cent of their total sales during the December-January period alone – so your equipment needs to hold up during the chaos. After all, lost sales due to a breakdown over the busy period are likely to far outweigh the costs of an equipment service or upgrade.
Building a loyal, hardworking team is one of the hardest parts of small business so it’s important to hold on to staff where you can. Avoid staff turnover by rewarding the staff that work hard for you, and empower them so that you can achieve your business goals together. This involves managing your Christmas roster to account for the many types of team members over the festive season – such as those that want to go away and won’t be able to work, or those that want to work every shift, but may become burnt out as a result of this.
Increase your staff now so you not only have a buffer, but have them trained-up and ready to go ahead of the Christmas week chaos. Don’t forget to reward staff when the quieter months of January and February roll around.
Events are in abundance at this time of year and event revenue and catering packages can significantly boost your profits. With a corporate catering spend far exceeding a standard consumer order, it’s worth increasing local marketing in the lead up to December in order to generate Christmas party and end-of-year breakup sale leads.
It can be easy to run yourself into the ground working at this time of year, but it’s vital that you also make time for your personal life. Lack of sleep and no time to do activities you enjoy can affect your mental clarity, energy levels and health. Ensure you have a strong management structure in place that affords you time off to relax with your friends and family over Christmas. Your staff will thank you for it!
Andy Reeves, National Franchise Manager, Silver Chef