November 28, 2022

It's that time of year again! The time when small business owners everywhere start scrambling so they can end the 4th quarter strong and meet their annual goals. If you're feeling frazzled, take a deep breath and check out this guide from the One SouthCoast Chamber to make the final quarter less frantic.


Revisit Annual and Q4 Goals


One of the best places to begin when it comes to preparing for the 4th quarter is to revisit your annual and 4th quarter goals. What did you want to accomplish this year, and what do you still need to do to make that happen? This is also a good time to assess whether your goals are still realistic and achievable, or if you need to readjust them based on what's happened over the course of the year.


Plan Those All-Important Holiday Promotions


With the hectic but potentially lucrative holiday season at hand, it's absolutely vital that you streamline your marketing plan and holiday promotions. What kind of holiday discounts or specials can you offer your customers? How will you let them know about these deals? One effective strategy could be to share promotional images via social media, mentioning any particular sales or discounts you’re running. If you’ve already put together a promotional packet that you’ve been sharing in PDF form, simply use this free tool to turn a PDF into a jpg file and start engaging with your audience by posting these images via Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Beyond that, does your website run smoothly and feature seasonally appropriate content and promotions? Any other ideas to expand your customer base? Answering these questions now will help you avoid the last-minute rushing around come December.                                   

Tax and Financial Organizing


Okay, we get it – no one likes doing taxes. Unfortunately, they're a necessary evil for small business owners so getting your taxes in order now will save you a lot of headaches (and money) come tax season. Gather up all your financial documents, like receipts, bank statements, and invoices, and put them in one place. This will make it much easier to prepare your taxes when the time comes.


Prioritize Inventory Needs


As a business, making the most of the holidays also means ensuring that you have enough inventory on hand as you head into the 4th quarter. No one wants to deal with upset customers who can't get the products they want because you're out of stock. Take inventory of what you currently have on hand and what needs to be reordered, and then put in those orders sooner rather than later. This will help ensure that you don't run into any stock issues as we head into the peak holiday shopping season.


Streamline Operations          


The 4th quarter is often a busy time for businesses, which means it's important to have your operations running as smoothly as possible. Do a little housekeeping now to make things run more smoothly later. Update your customer contact lists, purge old files that are taking up space, streamline workflows – anything that will make it easier for things to run smoothly when demand is high.


Once the 4th quarter craziness dies down, it's important to take some time to plan ahead for the first quarter of next year. What goals do you want to achieve? What can you do now to set yourself up for success in January? Addressing these items now will help ensure that your business starts the new year off on the right foot.


Don't let the last quarter leave you feeling stressed and uncertain. By revisiting goals, planning holiday marketing strategies, getting taxes in order, stocking up on inventory and planning ahead for next year, you can ensure that your business ends the year strong and sets itself up for success in 2023!


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