According to the US National Retail Federation, this year’s holiday season is very promising for retailers. The shopping spending of over $600 billion is going to be exceeded this year, and the amount of money an average person is going to spend on gifts and holiday preparations will reportedly grow from $802,45 (last year) to $805,65. Moreover, the survey findings promise great profits for the online merchants, with 46% of buyers going to shop for gifts online, which is the biggest number in the history as for now.
As a retail business owner, you definitely expect the best profits during the November-December period, just like every other merchant. But instead of simply expecting, you can act and use best practices to get the most out of the magic holiday season. You’re wondering how you would do that? Well, find the smartest ideas below and make sure both you and your customers have truly merry holiday experience.
Get your website ready
Since it is your major sales tool, make sure it works properly and displays well on mobile devices, as around 38% of shoppers state they will be using their smartphones and tablets to research products. Why don’t you catch this chance to engage with more customers?
Help your clients with the gift ideas
No doubt, everyone has experienced hardships when choosing gifts for some of his relations/friends/colleagues etc, and would be grateful for a tip or an idea. So, compile a list of suggested presents for different categories of people (e.g. mom, husband, best friend etc) and send it to your registered customers. Don’t hurry, it’s best done in the course of a few days, and preferably well in advance before sending the newsletter, so that you could brainstorm all possible variants and then select the most relevant. Complement the email with item suggestions from your store - and expect the surge of buyers.
Offer free or discounted shipping
For many shoppers, shipping rate is an important factor when choosing gifts. Presenting your customers with a smaller or zero shipping fee, you can win not only gratitude, but also bigger sales volume, and - in all probability - new loyal clients.
Offer free gift wrapping
This relatively cheap and easy to do thing can attract much more customers to your store. It can become the drop that overweight your competitors’ offer and wins you a sale.
Share the giving mood of the holidays, and offer your current customers great deals on the products they buy most often. Even if you don’t make much money out of it, you’ll certainly win your clients’ appreciation and spur their desire to recommend you to a friend.
Offer gift cards
This is not a novelty, but the idea is especially relevant to the businesses selling items or services that aren’t considered gifts traditionally. Instead of watching others busy with the growing number of customers and sighing sadly, you can have your share in the fun. There are definitely people who would be happy to get a dry cleaner's gift certificate, have their house cleaned or nails done. Gift cards are also great helpers in case making the right choice among the endless range of similar products is next to impossible (imagine a husband buying lipstick for his wife, and you’ll know what I mean).
This tip is supposed to boost your sales, but it’s best if you’re not trying to sell anything for now. Simply create a sincere and heart-felt greeting with warm wishes, saying thanks for being with you and send it to all your clients, even those who haven’t been active for a while. It would be awesome if you could send cards via regular mail, rather than email, handwritten being the absolute winners. Still, no matter in what form, these cards should evoke positive feelings, and, of-course, remind your buyers about your business.
In a few days, you may follow up with a newsletter with your special offers and sales, and measure the result.
Extend your online presence
Most of your clients surely spend time in social networks, so make sure you’re not missing out on this opportunity to engage into communication with them. Surely, it won’t bring any breathtaking results if you start out a week before the holiday season. But anyway, it’s never late to start. Use your existing Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Instagram accounts etc. to let your followers be the first to know about your hot deals. Also, organizing contests is a great way to expand your audience. Make sure you have exclusive offers and discounts for your followers, which makes a great incentive to become one.
Offer product bundles
It always evokes interest if you are ready to give away an item at no cost to accompany the one already bought. It works for gifts even better. So, simply rename the “Buy one, get one free” promo into “Buy one and get one free as a holiday gift” and you’ll kill two birds with one stone - help customers pick gifts for others and boost your sales.
Make them come back for more
Don’t let your customers leave with simply the item they were looking for. Present them with a bonus - a discount for the next purchase, a coupon code for a special category of items/services etc. This helps establish closer relationship with clients since they will be tempted to come back soon. Using this recommendation is also going to keep you busy once the holiday season is over.
Put together a holiday “map”
When you’re ready with the plan for the upcoming holiday sales - discounts, special offers, seasonal items etc, share it with your customers. Create a landing page showing what you’ve got in store for them. Even if your sphere doesn’t exactly relate to the holidays, be creative and think how it can be made relevant and what could be of value for your customers during this period. Let them know about it - no doubt they’ll appreciate your efforts.
Have you already tried any of the above tips? What are your special holiday treatment for clients keeping them happy and helping you grow the revenue? Make our day and join in the discussion below!