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How often do you change your operating hours outside of holidays or festive season?

Happy March, everyone 🌸 🌼

 

In the next couple of weeks, the clocks will be going forward in preparation for longer daylight in many countries. In Dublin, it means the beginning of what is called "the grand stretch" — or when the sun shines longer. Shops also begin to lengthen their opening times for the season, with some staying open until 9pm into the evening.

 

With that in mind, we'd love to know:

 

How often do you change your operating hours outside of holidays or festive season?

 

Do you open longer when daylight lasts longer in the summer, or do you keep the same operating hours throughout the year? Or maybe, your operating hours are varied by days?

 

Looking forward to reading all your replies!

Tra | she/her
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We check/modify our hours at least two or three times a month.  We follow the school calendar and there are special schedules almost every week (holidays, testing days, meeting days, early dismissals, special evening or weekend events).

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Seems like it must be hard to keep on top of! What do you do to help with announcing the new schedule to customers?

Max Pete
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I only change my hours twice per year. Once when we hit "summer" which for us is the first week of Feb thru Halloween/end of October.

 

We are open Sat, Sun, Mon 11-4, then T - F 9-8.

 

After that, November - Jan we are closed one weekend day, and only until 7pm the remaining days. 

 

The salon is only available by appointment, however, so I am curious to hear how others with foot traffic do this.

 

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Awesome! Do you find that you get a lot of customers that want to do walk-ins?

Max Pete
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We have four parts to our ice cream season:

 

  1. Pre-season, which starts in March, when we close earlier because it gets dark earlier and because kids are still in school.
  2. Regular season, when we are open every day until at least 10pm (April-September)
  3. Post-season, which starts in October, and reflects earlier sunset and school being back in full swing again.
  4. Off-season (November - February) when we are closed for the season.

Having said that, I love, love, love the fact that I can connect my Google listing to my Square account and only have to change my hours with Square who then pushes those changes to Google.  However, as I’ve started my season this year, I’ve noticed a few things that need to be added to the Google sync in our Locations dashboard.  Here are links to my feature requests on the subject @tranguyen.  And for anyone else reading this, if you agree with one or more of these requests, please like/upvote them with your own helpful comments.  Thanks!

 

https://www.sellercommunity.com/t5/Square-Point-of-Sale-app/Google-listing-sync-temporarily-closed/i...

 

https://www.sellercommunity.com/t5/Square-Point-of-Sale-app/Google-Listing-sync-Opening-Date/idi-p/7...

 

https://www.sellercommunity.com/t5/Square-Point-of-Sale-app/Google-Listing-Sync-Special-Hours/idi-p/...

Chip

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Piper’s Ice Cream Bar, Covington KY USA
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Thanks for sharing this, Chip! Definitely great ideas with the requests too!

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We actually don't change our hours at all. For us consistency is key. We had a neighbor shop that was a BBQ place and their hours were changing all the time and people would come in and complain that they can never count on them being open. So we keep our hours the same and so far it has worked for us. I think if we lived somewhere where it was a normal yearly thing to extend hours like you were saying you do in Dublin it may be different. Because if many people are doing it then you can expect it, but if it's just a business here or there then it can be hard to know if it will be worth it or not.

Lovewell Tea & Coffee//
Ventura, Ca


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True! Also with SoCal being nice year around, it is hard to justify changing for seasons haha!

Max Pete
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Exactly, I gained a lot of customers due to the fact the other shop in town would be closed during the hours they had posted as being open. Customers had that so consistent hours are a must 

Steve Green
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I don't change my hours outside of holidays.  I have a clothing boutique so it's all about consistency for me.  If I close for a period of time outside of my regular scheduled hours, I update my social media accounts.  If I go on vacation, I update my social media accounts and send out and email/text about the change of hours for that time period.

Jacqueline Mull
Owner of Jackie's Uniquely U Boutique
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Consistency is key!

Max Pete
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I only change business hours in case of an emergency. Customers really dislike business hours that change so I try to avoid it if at all possible 

Steve Green
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Good point!

Max Pete
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When we reopened after Covid we reduced down to five days from six.. we needed those 2 days to fulfill shipping packages can our online business took off. 

The following year (2021) we opened 7 days a week during the Summer "temporarily" and here we are 3 years later with the same hours.. LOL

Dina
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Oh wow! Are you planning on keeping open 7 days a week or wanting to scale back down?

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I change seasonally since we are in a major tourist town.  In different seasons we don't have as many people out walking the streets so I close earlier. Then in the summer we get a lot of runners and they are out early so I open earlier than the rest of the year.   

Doran

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Definitely a good choice to be flexible during different seasons. Btw, I love Monterey (used to live in Carmel!)

Max Pete
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I firmly believe that if you're not a seasonal business (golf, ice cream, etc) you shouldn't have seasonal hours. 

 

Customers are hit with so much marketing from every angle these days, you can't expect them to remember your hours. Being consistent means they know roughly when you're open and they will show up. No need to check google or facebook. One less task for your customers to complete to shop with you, and we all know making it easy is key.


I'm open 7 days a week, with 5 of those past 4pm, in my downtown area. I can not tell you the amount of complaints we get WEEKLY about market stands not being open market days, or opening after the entire market technically opens. The complaints about the businesses who are open only market days, even though they aren't in market. It's only getting worse BTW because customers want ease and convenience. 

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Preston & jayne est. 2023


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@alexandriak By and large, I can’t agree more!  It’s become something of a running joke here in the village neighborhood where Piper’s is located.  More than a few businesses over the years have had “hours as posted on FB” which change regularly.  Or they post hours, but with the caveat that those are subject to change as needed in order to accommodate our real jobs.  Or they just don’t keep the hours posted on the sign — not just once a month but pretty much at least once a week.

 

I’d go into my next observations which would require a trigger warning about an upcoming “Boomer Diatribe Alert!” Ha.  But, as I’m usually too wordy and opinionated, I’ll keep those to myself.  Let’s just say that besides a business owner, I also lease commercial retail and office space.  Prospective tenants convince me whether I want them or not when I inspect their business plan, especially their operating hours.  ‘Nuff said.  LOL

Chip

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Piper’s Ice Cream Bar, Covington KY USA
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I always tell people that if I ever go into real estate that I would have it in the lease they'd have to be open x amount of days a week. People think I'm crazy but I don't see how I could ever lease to a tenant who planned to be open 12 days a month that they'd be able to pay me! Maybe an established business, but that's a big maybe. 

My Girlfriend's Wardrobe est. 2012

Preston & jayne est. 2023


Downtown York Pa


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