When (or if) will you shut down for Christmas?

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With Christmas rapidly approaching it’s likely that you’ve already set the date you’re shutting the warehouse doors and calling it a wrap. It’s time to go home, do that last minute Christmas shopping and enjoy some well deserved down time with family and friends.

After this week, next week is the dodgiest week of the year for retailers as the stakes are so high for consumers. Will that present arrive on time. Should you risk shipping 2nd Class post on Monday or is it time to switch to 1st Class post. Do you want to trust the (admittedly generally superb) Royal Mail services in the last couple of pre-Christmas days, or are you going to up your delivery services to next day couriers or Royal Mail Special Delivery?

This year, with Christmas falling on a Sunday, final deliveries by most services will take place on the 23rd and there’ll be no last minute Christmas Eve deliveries unless your customer pays for a weekend delivery.

Of course those who use fulfilment services don’t have quite the same worries. If you use Amazon FBA you can happily carry on selling over Christmas and it’ll be Amazons problem. You can even fulfil eBay and website orders from FBA stock if you so wish.

When are you planning to shut down and will you be shutting up entirely for a long Christmas break or will you just take the bank holidays off work? Are you intending to remove stock from sale with holiday settings, or will you carry on selling as normal and deal with the backlog of shipping when you return to work.

It’s worth remembering that many people get bored on Christmas Day and the following bank holidays. This year, more than ever before, Christmas will be dominated by consumers with tablets and smartphones dual screening. When they see something interesting on the telly box or someone gets a gift they wish they’d received before, it’s literally a couple of seconds and an order can be placed.

Shutting up shop could result in a significant financial loss. Staying open will eat into your well deserved downtime. What will you be doing?

15 Responses

  1. Will be taking a break – making money isn’t everything.

    Not sure about your praise of Royal Mail, Chris.

    Only 1 out of 5 items I’ve ordered as a customer this Xmas have arrived yet – 4 out of 5 are late

    A very merry Xmas to all at Tamebay.

  2. I’ll shut down next Monday and upgrade everyone to 1st class. I usually reopen on December 24th but as noted with Christmas being on Sunday I’ll be opening a bit earlier. I usually sell quite a lot on Xmas day.

    Any hint of snow and I’ll shut down earlier.

  3. I’m going to start winding down around the 20th and close completely on the 23rd. Not even going to look at a work e-mail until the 4th of January.

  4. As Christmas falls on the Sunday I’m going to just treat it as a bank holiday weekend where eveything will be kept open, but I stop processing orders on the Friday (23rd) and start again on the Tuesday (27th).

  5. Only shut for the days that Royal Mail do not offer collection – However as we are on Amazon someone will still be checking messages etc daily so not officially “Shut Down”

  6. Stopped selling last weekend, the last automated dispatch+7 day feedback request will go out tonight with a reminder to contact us urgently if the item hasn;’t arrived.

    Will leave the country for a month t the end of the week and anyone contacting us after Friday will get a f*** off auto reply.

  7. Will stop with eBay after the weekend, but till Christmas Eve then open up again. Am only doing this with eBay due to silly expectations.
    Have already pulled all international on eBay ages ago, and am now pulling that on the other markets.
    Then close again at new year as eBay don’t look at regional differences in holidays then open again. We actually get an extra weekend this year compared to the last two.

  8. Closing on Friday evening, taking hubby to watch Rogue One to celebrate, he’s worked like a trooper this Xmas period on very little sleep. Will open Xmas Eve. ‘Off’ next week but no doubt will have to deal with the ‘where’s my order’ last minute mither.

  9. How do you guys deal with eBay?
    Do you set holiday settings ‘delay with order’?
    Or do you complete hide all listings?

  10. We’ve experimented with various different ways of shutting down over the past few years from closing on the 23rd and re-opening on the 2nd to closing those days but opening up one day around the 29th so we don’t have a huge backlog on the 2nd.

    As a large Amazon and eBay seller it’s not really possible for us to shut down at all any more. This year we’re only closed when the couriers don’t collect. We’re happy for the staff to work skeleton shifts though so as long as we have enough coverage then staff can still put holidays in.


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