The majority of small business owners are optimistic about holiday sales this year. While some say the upcoming holiday season will be the same (55%), other predict that it in fact be better better (37%) than last year, according to the OPEN Holiday Growth Pulse.
Small retail businesses are particularly bullish and are placing greater weight on the holiday season for their future growth. Further, 54% feel their potential for business growth in 2016 will be contingent on a successful holiday season.
The number of small businesses stating growth is the top priority for their business has grown since August (79%, up from 72%) and has risen even more among retailers (86%, up from 74%).
The biggest concern that small business owners reported about growing their businesses during the holidays is balancing their holiday needs with long-range growth plans (19%). The chief concerns specifically for retailers involve maintaining appropriate inventory levels (24%) and facing pressure to discount or offer costly promotions (21%).
And with such positive economy expectation, 50% of small business owners indicate that their employees can expect a small bonus (less than 5% of annual salary), while 23% expect to receive a larger bonus (5 to 15% of salary). Only 5% will receive a bonus that is more than 15% of their salary. However 22% say their employees will not get a bonus at call.
Comparing the bonuses they will give this year to last year, 42% say they will be giving larger employee bonuses this holiday season while slightly fewer (40%) say they will not.