The Holiday Season has arrived, or is currently in full swing (we are talking to you if you started decorating your house for the winter holidays as soon as the last trick ‘r treater left your door), and so with it comes a huge amount of potential customers and sales to reach those end of year numbers and goals. If you’re a small business wondering what you can do to stand out this holiday season, read on for the top tips to boost your season’s sales.
- Connect Your Brand to the Holidays. You are competing against hundreds of brand marketing this holiday season, so how do you cut through the noise? Digital ad placement is an effective and efficient way to make sure your brand is top of mind. Since most people are shopping online, you can create an association between your brand and holiday gift-giving, by curating ads designed to convey your holiday shopping selection. Think of doing regular posts on social media with varied holiday creative offers, boost your efforts through paid media, and update your website and social media pages to reflect holiday-themed offers.
- Join Forces with Other Local Businesses. Holiday shopping provides an ideal opportunity to network and support the businesses on your street. By working together, you can create a larger event, promotion or sale to draw in foot traffic and help encourage local shopping. Think of hosting a street market, coordinating sales and discounts or organizing other events to reach the community and incentivize shoppers.
- In-Store Events Get People’s Attention. Give people a reason to come out and shop, that isn’t related to shopping! It may sound counter intuitive, but people are looking for holiday activities and events. These do not have to be big events, but if they are interesting, fun and there’s something for all ages to enjoy, your chances of a good turnout skyrocket and more foot traffic inevitably means more sales. A fun example can be setting up a holiday-themed photoshoot with a localized step and repeat staging area where shoppers can pose and interact with props from your store. Encourage posting and sharing photos online and tagging your company for an extra discount or to be entered to win a nice door prize. An advent-style countdown or a 12 Days of Christmas is another great idea to inspire in-store traffic. Get creative and think about what best ties into your products or services.
- Bundle Gifts for Easy Shopping. Think gift categories like, “Gifts for Him” or “for Her.” Items like frozen meat packages for grilling or makeup and beauty product baskets are fantastic offerings for shoppers who like to avoid overly complicated holiday gifting. It’s difficult for online retailers to bundle and sell gift packages, which puts local business owners at a unique advantage.
- Socialize, Socialize, Socialize. Take to social media with holiday promotional posts that highlight your items, products, services, etc. and tell your followers why it makes the perfect gift. Showcasing unique or hard-to-find items will draw more interest and increase the shareability of your post. Keep things specific, one post with a curated assortment of specialty spices and the latest cooking gadget is going to do more for you than five posts with generic products and services. Demonstrate your expertise in crafting the perfect gift for whatever your specialty may be. Be sure to include local shopping hashtags and add them to your posts to increase your reach and impressions.
- Start with Your Current Customers. Sort through your current email list and create personalized emails based on previous purchases or specific interests. Send eCards to your list with holiday greetings and a special offer to come in and shop last minute gifts.
- Ensure Shoppers Can Find You. Make sure your store is visible on mobile searches. Locals, and out of town guests, rely on “near me” searches to find local listings of businesses. List your business for free on Google and other search engines and review sites so that you can be sure to show up on map results and search engine pages for those in the moment searches that bring more business
- Convert Holiday Customers into Regulars. Collect contact information from holiday shoppers who don’t normally come in throughout the year. Small gifts and special offers for exchanging emails and social media handles usually does the trick. That way you can add them to your mailing list and make sure they stay up to date on promotions, events and store announcements all year long.
End of year shopping is a great chance to bring some attention to your store or website through these useful digital marketing tips. We hope everyone has a safe and happy holiday season and we are thankful for our friends, family, followers and customers.