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What has been your biggest learning from handling orders for celebrations and holidays this year?

Hello!

 

2024 is jam packed with holidays and celebrations. And on top of that, several holidays are quite close together, so we had Valentine’s Day in February and then approximately 4 weeks later we launched into Mother’s Day (March 10 - UK and Ireland), just around the corner is St Patrick’s Day (March 17), which will be swiftly followed by Easter (March 27)! In the U.S., May is busy with Mother’s Day (May 12) Memorial Day (May 27) and Father's Day (June 12). And I'll bet there's a holiday I've forgotten...

 

So, for everyone gearing up for Spring-Summer 2024 we’d like you to share:

 

What has been your biggest learning from handling orders for celebrations and holidays this year? 

 

What would you change? Would you or could you ‘skip’ a holiday? Have you already? Looking forward to hearing your insights. 💡

️ Helen
Seller Community Manager

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Excited to see all of the replies to this!

 

Especially interested in hearing from @Twiggy@phillipsrw@Stacelyn24@grovetealounge & @Maurice8th 👏

Max Pete
Community Engagement Program Manager, Square
Seller Community
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Hi @Helen and @maxpete It's been a pretty tough one this year with an early season compressed calendar. So back in November we knew it was going to be a full on start in 2024, so we made the conscious decision to dialed back NPD for the first quarter of 2024 to enable us to focus resource on operations, having materials to hand and building the stock as early as possible was crucial. We split the stock build for each calendar event in to two, and using the Square reporting tools we knew our sell through rates for 2023, and using this data we built our stock accordingly then had a smaller production run closer to the date. The bigger challenge was the marketing and PR long-leads, as we had to be ready mid December 2023 for these! But we are nearly over the hump, two more weeks and we will be on to Christmas 2024! 🎅

Coco Chemistry Ltd
Artisan Chocolatier
www.cocochemistry.co.uk
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Sounds like you have been able to build a good system in place for this!

Max Pete
Community Engagement Program Manager, Square
Seller Community
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It has been a whirlwind for us jam packed with constantly changing holiday decor, Valentine Day Bash, spring break camps, St Patrick's Day events, Easter so early this year means switching decor quickly, promoting Easter products, already thinking about Mothers Day, Memorial Day, Fathers Day and Summer Camps!  The fun is so compressed this year.  

 

Not to mention that we opened a new location at the beginning of January, so we're having to do all of this times two now!

 

My team and I have been burning the candles on all ends and running on all cylinders. 🦋🦋🦋

~Cheryl!
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Cheryl! Tisland
Burst Of Butterflies Create & Paint Studio

BurstOfButterflies.com
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Phew, that is a whirlwind, times two!! 

️ Helen
Seller Community Manager

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The compressed calendar doesn't affect us as much but it is stressful to operate a business where our members want to use holiday 'off work' time to come in meaning we don't close for many holidays. We take an end of year break to refresh 🙂 Many restaurants I follow seemed really stressed offering promotions for holidays back to back to back. One even "moved" Mardi Gras because they felt like they had just promoted too much but they got a ton of backlash - I had a lot of empathy for them 😞

Deklan (Dex) they/them]

MudFire CEO | Square enthusiast

Visit me at MudFire online
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Ah good point about having to stay open more for members who now have more free time to shop.

Max Pete
Community Engagement Program Manager, Square
Seller Community
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One of the biggest lessons we've learned this year in managing clients for celebrations and holidays is the importance of planning ahead. We've found that encouraging our clientele to book their appointments or events well in advance, ideally 2 to 3 months ahead, can help avoid any last-minute scheduling disasters. By securing their spot early, they can ensure availability and avoid the stress of trying to make arrangements at the last minute. It not only helps us better accommodate their needs but also ensures a smoother and more enjoyable experience for everyone involved.

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Planning ahead is always a great idea! Really smart way to incorporate this in your business!

Max Pete
Community Engagement Program Manager, Square
Seller Community
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#1 is if you mess it up you ruined their life.

But seriously, emphasizing pre-order deadlines and carefully checking their hand written forms, for those that don't use the online site.  Communicating pickup process ahead of time.  Having someone in charge of sorting the orders that can handle stress (the ex husband gives a different last name and then gets super mad when you can't find the name, or the people that are at the wrong location, etc) and can be very organized.  We had 460 pre-orders at one of our bakeries so keeping track of where the items are and who can and can't pull orders etc.

Always keep a couple extras in the pre-order pile for issues and then when you get down to remaining 50 or so you can triple quadruple check them and start putting extras back out or sale.

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