The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted everything we take for granted and the holiday shopping season will be no different. Businesses will need to get creative to stay on top of the competition and receive the market share they expect. Let’s dive into some of the creative ways that your businesses can approach the holiday shopping season to ensure you see maximum sales numbers.
More Online Deals I don’t think this comes at any surprise, but since the pandemic hit more and more shopping has been done online. With this in mind to capitalize on this new purchase strategy your business may consider offering more deals online. This can help with reducing in-store traffic, driving more sales over all and making the purchase process more convenient for the customer (more on this later). Not to mention the fact that this will make your company appear more socially responsible to its consumers. Take your online shopping experience to the next level and offer free shipping or free curbside pickup. We all know that large competitors like Amazon are offering free shipping so it is to your benefit to offer this deal as well. You can potentially set your business apart by offering a quick and easy curbside pickup option, something Amazon and some other large retailers are not able to offer. This gives your customers the convenience of shopping at home, but with the added benefit of getting their items quicker.
Expanded Holiday Sales To not only recoup from losses experienced earlier in the year, but also to try and reduce crowded in-store shopping we are already seeing retailers expand their holiday deals beyond Black Friday and Small Business Saturday. Some businesses have already announced amazing deals that start after Halloween so it is imperative your holiday deals start asap. There is no reason to wait for Black Friday in-fact Black Friday as we know it may never be the same again.
Shopable Social Media Accounts Time and time again we talk about how people are spending more and more time online whether that is shopping online or browsing social media. It will be imperative this holiday season that your social media account is shopable. Sharing the latest gadget that everyone needs in their home? You better include a way that consumers can quickly and easily purchase that item. This could be through a transaction directly on Facebook or a link to that product on your website where the consumer can easily add it to their cart and check out. If you don’t offer shopable social media posts you are leaving lots of sales on the table.
Premium Online Customer Experience I mentioned earlier we would talk more later about a convenient online shopping experience. Well here it is. With so many online shopping options available to consumers today, consumers expect the experience to be easy, convenient and worry free or they will take their business elsewhere. A couple things to consider when offering a premium online shopping experience:
- Is your checkout process seamless? Can you autofill information for returning customers?
- Are you suggesting complementary products to your consumers?
- Is your website easy to navigate to find what you are looking for?
- Do you accept various forms of payment from credit card, PayPal to Apple Pay?
- In a single transaction can a customer ship various items to different addresses?
Integrated Marketing Strategies It isn’t enough to be offering amazing deals on your website alone. How are you promoting these offers? You can increase your sales by promoting your sales in various places throughout the web. Consider implementing a paid social media ad campaign to promote your holiday sales while your customers are simply browsing their social media accounts. You can even target these ads to promote the exact items the customer had previously viewed on your website. The more times a customer sees an offer the more likely they are to convert. The same can be said for implementing a paid ad strategy on Google. It is inevitable that consumers are shopping on Google this holiday season. Where does your business rank? Investing in a paid advertising strategy ensures you appear towards the top of the page for maximum impression share. And don’t forget about building in an e-mail campaign. Not only is e-mail great for communicating your sales to your customers it is a great tool for following up with those customers who abandoned items in their online shopping cart. Reminder emails to these consumers see double and sometimes triple the click through rate that a normal targeted e-mail will receive. So take the time to implement a strategy to remind your customers about their abandoned cart, because I promise you it will pay off.
Memorable Packaging & Unboxing Experience With the increased number of online shopping we are expected to see this season consumers will be receiving more and more boxes on their doorstep. You can make your brand stand out from the rest with memorable packaging. This could be something as simple as branding the outside of the packaging. You can also consider how the items are packed inside the box. Maybe add some colorful tissue paper and skip the traditional packing materials. Consumers will have a premium perception of your brand if you take a little extra time to make the packages of your product look pretty. Hey, you may even save the customer time by no longer having to wrap the package to put under the Christmas tree!
This year the holiday season will be like nothing we have ever experienced before however I think this pandemic is paving a new way forward for all of us so take this time to step outside your comfort zone and try something new. At this point you have nothing to lose and everything to gain.