How to prepare your small business for the busy season in 5 easy steps.

With the holiday season upon us, you may be panicking about how to keep it all together.  Take advantage of the tips I've put together to make this your most wonderful time of the year.

1. Make a plan for the season.
    While sipping morning coffee write up a rough outline of what you want to accomplish this season.  Treat yourself to a little brainstorming session to come up with promotions, coupons, and special events you know will get your customers totally pumped up. 

2. Set Reminders!
    Set yourself up with a system using Google calendar, or a similar program, then make a more detailed plan of how you want to spend each day.  Always set deadlines and reminders for yourself.  It can feel overwhelming sometimes and you're not always going to remember everything so write it down! Are you writing this down?  Save yourself a little Christmas Eve panic and set shipping dates, i.e. last day customers can order for each level of shipping grade etc.  

3. Stay Visible.
    It's very important to stay visible to your fans so devote some time for social media, emails and blogs to  engage with your followers.  Try to share a picture that represents your brand and personality every day.  Remind people about sales and promotions going on through these sites, make sure you use #relavent #hashtags.  Dont forget to promote those promotions you came up with in step one! Creating special codes for repeat customers may seem like a daunting, time consuming task- but it's worth it.  Trust, me.  You trust me right?

4. Take inventory of your stock and supplies.
    Research your stock and sales from the previous holiday season so you are always a few steps ahead, and have a bit more on hand just in case. Be optimistic but realistic about your budget. 

5.  Get Ready to Do it All Again. 
    Once you get past the big push, don't sit down and rest.  It's time to start planning 2015.  Ha.  Just kidding.  Take a nap.  You deserve. it.