The holiday season is one that sparks a sense of warmth and cheer in may people around the world. It also comes with the necessity of shopping. Holiday shopping is a traditional activity around the world and particularly in America, where there is even a shopping holiday.
Black Friday (the day after Thanksgiving) is the name given to the first day of holiday shopping. It seems that some shoppers are more excited about the deals on Black Friday than they are to see their families for Thanksgiving.
Black Friday seems to be losing steam every year. Reports show a 9-percent decline in shoppers on Black Friday from 2017 t 2018; down from the 4-percent decline seen from 2016 to 2017. This means that stores must start to change their approach to pursuing more holiday customers in this new digital and social age. Here we will discuss 7 surefire ways to promote your small business during the holidays.
1. Offer Holiday Discounts or Giveaways
There is something irresistible about a significant discount or giveaway, particularly during the holiday shopping season. Appeal to your customers’ need to find fantastic deals or even get something free by visiting your business. This can make all of the difference in your sales number during the most beautiful time of the year.
There are a host of specials and contests that you can run to attract that holiday crowd. Begin by looking at the most popular items during the holidays and decide which items will be suitable for use during a discount campaign. Markdown the items and have tags and signage that make the sales visible to shoppers from a distance.
Contests and giveaways always make for exciting promotions. Adding a game layer to the shopping experience is a great holiday marketing idea. Find the items that will make for great prizes and come up with the criteria for winning (drawing, shopper number, etc.).
2. Prepare Gift Ideas and Suggestions
What do you get for the person that seems to have everything? There are a surprising number of shoppers that are literally asking themselves some version of this question. There is something that you, as the business owner, can do for the uninspired shopper.
Give your customers suggestions and ideas for gifts their loved ones may love. Use signage or circulars that have the heading “Great Gift Ideas,” while giving gift suggestions in the body of the promotional materials.
3. Allow In-Store Pickup for Online Purchases
There is a recent online-based phenomenon that is sweeping the brick-and-mortar shopping industry. This phenomenon is called BOPIS (buy online pick up in-store). BOPIS is a method that has been used by big-box stores like Wal-Mart and Home Depot to compete with online retail giant Amazon.
Black Friday has been dwarfed by what is called Cyber Monday (trend of shoppers shopping online shopping rather than shopping at big-box retailers). Customers that shop online have started purchasing items and picking up those items at local locations. BOPIS shoppers say they like the convenience of buying online while being able to avoid shipping costs and waiting for delivery of their purchases.
To compete with online shopping outlets, brick-and-mortar stores that utilize BOPIS can satisfy the convenience that online shoppers treasure. And, they are also able to obtain their items online. By creating an online store that incorporates BOPIS, you can benefit from this groundbreaking business model for the holidays.
4. Get Involved in Charity Events
There is no doubt that the holiday season is a time for giving. The sense of giving that is inspired by the holiday season is something that every good business should get involved with.
There are plenty of charities and faith-based organizations that have holiday efforts you can support. Those customers that believe in charity will happily spend money with companies that share their philanthropic spirit.
5. Update Your Website to Reflect the Holiday Feel
Instead of decking the halls with bells of holly, decorate your website to reflect the festivity of the holiday season. Sprucing up your site for the holidays sends a clear message to all of your visitors. This will let them know that your company is feeling festive.
There are a variety of ways to show holiday cheer on your website. You can start by downloading free holiday images from websites that offer free high-quality photos. Find pictures that show joyful holiday scenes of people enjoying the warmth of family and scenes showing fascinating snow-filled winter wonderlands. Festive borders and graphics can also bring a holiday feel to your website.
6. Send Your Holiday Greetings via Email Marketing
CRM (customer relations management) software and websites are what companies use to create email marketing promotions. Instead of sending out expensive mailer campaigns to your existing customers, you may want to send them holiday greetings to their email.
If you are currently using a CRM platform, you can simply create an email campaign that is sent to all of your email list. Sending a greeting with a coupon or advertisement for an exclusive discount offer is the best way to deliver your holiday well wishes via email.
Contact the eHopper team if you need help setting up your own email marketing campaign. Email email@example.com
7. Engage Customers with Social Media
Social media is a form of online interaction that is undoubtedly here to stay. Tap into this forum that is often misused and misunderstood by brick-and-mortar small businesses. You obviously have to have a presence on social media before engaging with potential and current customers.
This is as simple as creating a company page and having a mixture of fun and promotional social media posts and adding exclusive holiday-related content during the holidays.
Make this holiday season one to remember by incorporating these small business ideas for your company. The times are rapidly changing, and those companies that refuse to change with the times will be left behind. Make sure you embrace the change and engage with your customers in a modern and meaningful way.
If you want to scale up for the holiday season, sign up today and try eHopper’s Omnichannel plan.
Ensure that you are reaching your customers at the right points of your sales pipeline by syncing eHopper POS with your website.