The constant analyzing of your business is imperative to your continued success.
You might not think that you analyze your business regularly, but if you take even the briefest of looks at your sales figures or monitor how many people have visited your website, you’re analyzing your business – it can be as simple as that.
The reason that Christmas is different in terms of how you analyze your business’s performance during the period is because it’s an odd time of year.
First of all, sales are likely to increase substantially on the run up, fall on Christmas Day itself, see a peak in sales the following day and then a peak and trough like graph for the remainder of the period, dependant upon the products that you’re offering.
Furthermore, in some countries around the world, such as in the UK, there are three public holidays over the festive period, which can mean that a lot of organizations and services run on reduced staff, have shorter opening times or don’t even open at all.
And then there’s the fact that you’re not only going to want to keep your customers happy, but your staff, too and ensuring that everyone has the time off they need over Christmas whilst keeping your business operating is a factor for every business owner to consider.
So with all this in mind, how do you go on to analyze your business’s Christmas performance?
Assuming that you’re not intent on hiring a professional business analyst and putting your traffic and sales figures to one side, as you are likely to be used to analyzing these, your best option here is look at your business through the eyes of a customer.
If you wanted to make a purchase from your own business over Christmas, would you have been able to? Of course, if you operate a bricks and mortar business, you wouldn’t have been expected to be open every day or even for a full working day, but would it have been relatively easy to make a purchase from 24th December to 3rd or 4th January?
If you could have made a purchase, would you have received all of the information you needed? Delivery dates, for example – chances are any products ordered over Christmas won’t be despatched until the new year, but was this information readily available to the customer?
What about if you wanted to get in touch with your company? Would you have been able to speak to someone easily about a refund, perhaps? About an undelivered item? How about if someone just wanted to give you some positive feedback?
How you analyze your business’s performance over Christmas really is up to you and your individual organization. Whilst your sales and website traffic / shop footfall data is always worth looking at regularly, the information explained here – that which comes from your customer – should be utilized heavily, as simply put, your customers are the people who keep your company in business.
This post was originally featured on December 29, 2010.