The holidays have arrived and stores across the nation are adding festive flair to windows, countertops and tables. For large and small businesses, getting into the holiday spirit can be an excellent marketing tool.

Once November comes, many begin putting up their holiday decorations and love when businesses participate as well. Consider the public’s excitement over special holiday cups, and the outrage that sometimes ensues when certain brands don’t get into the holiday spirit.

Bob Phibbs of RetailDoc.com said decorating for the holidays can be an excellent way to draw attention to a business during the holidays. He said it combines the new and the familiar to change the atmosphere of a store.

There is a reason better merchants pull out all the stops during December – it jolts jaded shoppers into the higher brain area that engages child-like wonderBob Phibbs

During the holidays, the first things customers notice in a store is the décor, but there are many ways to be festive. Here are a few tips on how to add a little holiday cheer to your business by changing up the decor, adding new menu items and changing food packaging.

Holiday Decorations

Begin with the outside. Potential customers know that you are participating in the holiday festivities before they walk in. Window artwork is one of the most bold and eye-catching ways to put the holidays on display. Consider using window clings or try a cost effective approach by painting holiday-themed images onto the windows.

Large seasonal promotional banners can also decorate your windows and shop door while advertising new menu items or seasonal discounts. Inside, keep it simple by adding strings of lights or go all out with garlands, a tree and ornaments. How far you go is up to you and your budget but even simple updates will bring a little wonder to your store.

Seasonal menu items

Adding seasonal menu items can help boost sales when everyone is craving their favorite holiday flavors. At the top of the holiday flavor list is cool and refreshing peppermint. With syrups and sauce options, it’s easy to add peppermint to just about anything; from mochas to hot cocoa.

Keep it simple by enhancing existing drinks or create new ones specifically for the season. Candy canes can be used as stir sticks to boost the presentation of a beverage.

Gingerbread is also a delicious flavor option for the holidays. Warm beverages are a staple during the holiday months, and a gingerbread chai latte is a great way to add something more unique than a simple latte. Offering gingerbread cookies is also a great way to add an easy grab-and-go treat that is sure to delight customers.

Another warm and spicy favorite for cold days is cinnamon. Sprinkle it into lattes or add a pump or two of cinnamon syrup to coffees and cappuccinos. Freshly baked cinnamon coffee cake or cinnamon rolls are the perfect treats to accompany seasonal drinks.

Holiday packaging changes

Send customers off with holiday or Christmas-themed packaging. Swap out regular cups and containers with holiday printed items. A holiday hot cup, holiday cup sleeve or holiday food container is a simple but effective way to tap into the excitement without breaking the bank or making any extreme effort.

If time allows, custom printing special holiday artwork is another way to update your foodservice disposables for the holidays.

The possibilities are endless when it comes to incorporating the holidays into your business. Let us know in the comments if you have had any success with these ideas or if you have more of your own!

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