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 and thoughtfulness and warm-fuzzy-feelings, but it's also the season of Frequently changing business hours.
Leading up to a 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.
Make an email announcement
One of my favorite local shops always has holiday hours. To get everyone in the holiday spirit, they send out the first holiday marketing email announcing their extended hours. This is their unofficial holiday kick off, and it does double duty: first, their customers know their new hours and second, people start coming into get their holiday shopping done
Update your Social Media Profiles and Business Directories
Did you know that you can feature your business hours on your Facebook page? Or that many business directories like Yelp will also show web visitors your hours? When you take the time to post business hours on any social 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 where ever they're posted.
Make a special notice on your website
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 as simple as adding a simple plugin to your site. If you're using Wordpress, one of my favorite is called Hello Bar. It will create a colored bar on the top of your website pages with a custom message or link.
Update Your Phone System
Your phone system is your first line of defense for customers and clients looking for more information about your business. First, update your voice prompts or auto attendant greeting to announce your business hours. You might also consider adding a special announcement or paragraph to your Message On Hold program, telling callers you have special hours.
Post Hours at 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 every ask you about your business hours during the holidays? How do you keep them in the know about your business?