Christmas is coming and the tills are ringing with festive spirit! It’s a fantastic time for retailers, but not so much for service-based businesses. How does Christmas affect business in the UK?
Traditionally, the Christmas shopping season kicks off with the John Lewis advert and the infectious earworm of Coca Cola’s “Holidays Are Coming”. As soon as we see or hear one of these two things, we can make a mental note in our internal calendars that we only have two months to prepare for Christmas!
The top days for Winter sales spending in the UK are as follows:
- Black Friday – the last Friday of November
The recent import from America, that has completely disrupted retail spending, taking in more money than any other sales day of the season.
- Cyber Monday – the Monday after Black Friday
The jealous little sister of Black Friday, whose only goal is to extend the weekend of sales for just a couple more days…
- Manic Monday – the first Monday of December
The day which traditionally would rack up sales in manic Christmas shopping, before the shopping season started a little earlier with the introduction of Black Friday.
- Christmas Day – 25th December
Whilst some are busy gorging themselves on roast turkey and mince pies, others are quick to go online and spend their Christmas money!
- Boxing Day – 26th December
Traditionally, the top retail day of the year!
- New Year’s Day – 1st January
Because you’ve got to get in on those January sales. Whilst stocks last!
It’s the busiest season of the year for the vast majority of retailers. And the addition of American holidays has disrupted the calendar for many retailers, as products become out of stock too early, reducing the takings in the weeks that follow. It’s impacted the entire trading calendar and traditional shopping cycle, creating more shopping peaks earlier in the season.
Many non-retail businesses and service-based industries slow to a lull over this festive period, however. Nobody really wants to think about their insurance, or property investments, during the excitement of the holidays. For the many types of businesses that go quiet in the holidays, it’s a good time to take stock of the year’s trading and tie up all the loose ends of that year, including the things that you would usually struggle with finding the time to do. This “quiet time” allows your employees to take a well deserved break, or finish off various tasks in time for the new year, and serves as an opportunity to hold a party or dinner for your employees or arrange other team building activities.
Every business is different, and seasonal trends will vary depending on your industry. Business owners over time develop an understanding of their business’ “rhythm”, and come to recognise all the patterns as if it were printed on the backs of their own hands.
If you’re having a quiet Christmas, why not get started with your business’ new year’s resolutions early! Or reassess your marketing strategy. Otherwise, if there’s not much to be done and it’s costing you to stay open, closing up the office for anywhere from a couple of days to a week (or even having half days, and stating your holiday hours on the website) for the end of December could boost employee morale and save you some money in utility bills. Especially if you always have the heating on in Winter!
However your business spends the winter season, hopefully you’ve planned for both the peaks and troughs and, above all, can enjoy a wonderful Christmas!
Happy Christmas from all at Ashburnham Insurance Services!