To say that 2020 has been challenging for small businesses may be the understatement of the year! And now, the advent of the holiday season in the midst of a surge of coronavirus infections, has put yet another spin on doing business.

However, despite the dificult environment, there are still opportunities for small businesses to drive sales and revenue during the holidays. Estimates are that 60 percent of consumers plan to keep their holiday shopping local this year. 

Here are a few steps you can take to make sure you capture the attention of shoppers in this critical time.

  1. Dial in the Digital! If you haven’t got an online presence, you’re missing out. According to Salesforce, online sales could grow 30% this year. So dust off the webs on your site and make sure you clearly state shipping dates and cut-offs for Christmas. Brighten up your online presence with holiday messaging and connect with your customers and suppliers with a virtual greeting card.

  2. Safety First. This is everyone’s top priority right now. Customers who interact with you in person want to know that you are doing all you can to keep them and your employees safe. So make sure to post your protocols and signage and keep cleaning, wiping, and disinfecting!

  3. Pivot Again. Small businesses have learned to be nimble over these past months by changing up practices and adapting to new circumstances. Take the time to think ahead as you may need to pivot once more. Sign up for online classes and learn new tech skills that will come in handy post-pandemic.

  4. Show Your Gratitude. The employee holiday party at a local restaurant is a thing of the past but there are other ways to celebrate your employees this holiday season. While a bonus might not be on the table due to financial constraints, you might consider an extra paid day off, a hand-written note, or an inexpensive gift.

  5. Take Care… of Yourself! This has been such a tiring time and we’re all suffering pandemic fatigue. As a business owner, you’re responsible for so much that it’s easy to forget to take care of yourself and build in some “me†time. Plan to take a day or two off… completely. Leave the screen behind and go for a walk… the redwoods, valleys, and the ocean are just the tonic we all need.

  6. Embrace your Small Business. Your customers are well aware of the challenges you… and they… have faced this year. Many want to help and have made a pledge to shop local from small businesses this holiday season. Let consumers know that where they shop makes a difference!

 If you need advice or assistance with your business, call West Center for an appointment with one of our expert advisors. West’s services are always free! Call 707-964-7571 or visit