With Thanksgiving just over a few weeks away and the December holidays right around the corner, the Holiday Season is truly upon us. Yes, it's the season for cheer, thoughtfulness, and warm-fuzzy-feelings, but it's also the season of frequently changing business hours. Provide good customer service and ensure that your customers know about the changing hours.
Leading up to the holidays, do you have extended hours? Are you closed the day after Thanksgiving, or the week between Christmas and New Year's? Customers generally expect different business hours surrounding the Holidays...as long as they know about them in advance. Here are some strategies for publicizing your Holiday hours and keeping your customers satisfied.
Email Your Customers
One of my favorite local shops always has holiday hours. They send out the first holiday marketing email which announces their extended hours. This is their unofficial holiday kick off. This email is great, because they inform their customers about the new hours, and people begin returning to the store to do their holiday shopping.
Social Media and Business Listings
Did you know that you can feature your business hours on your Facebook page and on Google? Many business directories like Yelp also show web visitors your hours. When you take the time to post business hours on any social media site or business directory, it's important to keep them accurate and updated. Whether you're closing early before Thanksgiving, or have extra-long hours in December, make sure you keep your hours up-to-date wherever they're posted.
Adding notifications to your website is a fast, easy way to get important news out to your customers. Depending on how your website is set up, it can be pretty simple. It can be as simple as adding an announcement into the header of your website.
Use A Chat Bot
Chat Bots can be used to remind website visitors of the special hours due to the holidays. Your chat bot can be setup to answer common questions your visitor may have, too. Using a chat bot offers great customer service on your ecommerce or online stores during the holiday season.
Your Phone System
Your phone system is your first line of defense for customers and clients looking for more information about your business. Update your voice prompts or auto attendant greeting to announce your business hours. Also consider adding a special announcement, or paragraph to your Message On Hold program, telling callers you have special hours.
Your Physical Location
It seems obvious to post your new hours at your physical location - but that also means it's an easy step to forget. I can't even say how many times I've tried to go to a store, and they don't have their hours posted. Do everyone a favor and make a simple, easy sign that shows your business hours.
Do your customers ever ask you about your business hours during the holidays? How do you keep them in the know about your business?