What to Do Now to Capitalize on Holiday Shopping Trends
The final quarter of the year is traditionally the busiest of all in the retail industry, but it’s a crucial time for small businesses as well. To wrap up projects and close the year out on a high note, many business owners find their finances stretched thin, even as they get a boost from a year-end surge in consumer activity. So capitalizing on holiday shopping trends can be difficult without proper funding.
To prepare for the busiest time of year in many markets, it’s common for owners to seek a short-term business loan to help with hiring extra staff, renting out more warehouse space and keeping shelves stocked. Unfortunately, this crucial tool is becoming increasingly hard for small businesses to find.
A lack of cash may stop you from capitalizing on holiday shopping trends
According to a survey conducted during the first quarter of 2017 by Pepperdine University, only one-third of businesses reporting under $5 million in revenue were able to obtain a bank loan. Policy leaders, including the U.S. Small Business Administration, have remarked that a lack of access to business loans is severely hindering the potential of small businesses, especially when they need extra help for the holidays.
QuickBridge is stepping up to the plate by meeting the precise financing needs of small businesses, helping them achieve success during the holidays to get back in the black to close out the year. With the right financing tools at the ready, small-business owners are well-positioned to make 2017 their best year yet and take advantage of the latest management tips and consumer trends.
Shoppers to spend more in 2017
CNBC reported that, based on research from multiple analysts, U.S. shoppers are poised to spend even more during this year’s holiday rush than they did in 2015 or 2016. Total retail revenues are expected to rise 4.5 percent over 2016 to top $1 trillion throughout the U.S.
Small business owners may rejoice at that figure, but they may easily be caught off guard by such high sales, too.
If you are in the wholesale trade industry or manufacturing business, demand for certain products spike, inventory can run out unexpectedly and staff may be in short supply. According to a 2015 survey of 1,000 small business owners, more than half worried that inventory shortages would prevent them from ending the holidays on a high note, while staffing concerns were also top of mind for at least 20 percent of respondents.
Small businesses juggling inventory and staffing
With consumers spending more and a labor market that’s more competitive than ever, local businesses and entrepreneurs need to be on their A-game financially. A business loan can be the tool that makes all this possible and puts you in a position to start capitalizing on holiday shopping trends.
Here are a few tips for owners who need to stay on top of inventory management, staff training and everything in between:
• Review last year’s holiday performance to brainstorm areas for improvement, but keep an eye on social media chatter and even your own company’s online reviews to stay ahead of the curve on consumer desires.
• If you need to hire seasonal help, look to your current employees first. They are more likely to have connections to people who are trustworthy and already work in your industry, making it easier to bring them on and help them succeed.
• Understand that, thanks to the internet, shoppers are smarter than ever, but still crave a real connection to small businesses. Be prepared to compete on price, but capitalize on opportunities to keep them coming back in the new year.
Ready to get a head start on the holiday rush? Give QuickBridge a call to learn how we help small businesses capitalize on demand and finish the year strong.