It’s almost that time of year again… holiday season. Every year I try and put together a reminder on timelines for projects and planning for the holidays. To give you a sense of what I mean about planning: if you’re looking to build an eCommerce website and have it up and running for the 2015 season, you’ve missed the boat.
After being in this business for over 10 years, I can tell you that starting a web project around the holiday season is like trying to book flights to Disney World for spring break – EVERYONE realizes they should book their flights at the same time. Obviously, this is not ideal. To get a custom site designed and developed in time for the holiday season, the project should have started in July.
Luckily, there are other some DIY alternatives available for determined business owners on a tight timeline such as Shopify and Squarespace. These are great alternatives to a custom website if you need something up and running ASAP. If you’d prefer a unique website with custom functionality, its best to plan at least 6 months in advance from when you want the project completed by. It seems crazy but 2015 is almost over – time to start planning for 2016!
For other projects such as marketing for the holidays, you’re still safe. There are 15 weeks left in the year and 13 weeks until peak holiday season. Be sure to start planning NOW so you do not miss out on critical business opportunities. For example, start thinking about Black Friday deals that you want to offer as well as the end of year discounts you’re thinking of promoting. Planning ahead will ensure that you aren’t panicking at the last minute trying to get your ducks in a row.
Below is a list of items we like to do at Old Town Media to finish out the year strong. Consider incorporating these into your end-of-year agenda:
- Get your website updated for end of year specials or finish out your website design that you have been working on so your 2016 year starts strong with a new presence.
- Start thinking about client appreciation gifts. It’s always great to thank the clients that help make you who you are. Get something special and not just another generic gift!
- Get your business holiday card made and make sure there is a hand written signature on it. There is a lot to say for sending a print piece nowadays. Most people go the electronic route, which isn’t necessarily as personal and doesn’t have the same feeling as a print piece. We always try to do something unique each year rather than just finding a vista print template (look out for this in December!).
- Get your holiday ads in order for print, web and/or social media detailing any specials that you are offering.