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8 Tips to Improve Your Holiday Sales.

Retail sales strategies for small busienssChristmas is just around the corner and an increasing number of people are buying their gifts online nowadays. If you have a eCommerce store, how would you like to get your hands on these rising numbers? This post will provide you with 8 suggestions on what you can do to improve your holiday sales and the best thing is that you can use many of the suggestions in general and not only for your holiday sales.

 

1. Plan your holiday sales in advance.

If you have not done it already you should spend some time to think about the coming holiday sales. Write down the things that worked well last year – and if you have some new initiatives to be tested this year. Collect it all in a holiday to-do-list.

 

The holiday season comes at the same time each year. If you have an overview of the things that need to be done before the rush hits you and your online store, you will have a better chance to prepare yourself in advance. This will result in more time for customers and order management in the months leading up to the holiday sales.

Your holiday to-do-list should also be used to buy the products and services you will need in advance, which may even lead to better prices or better quality.

 

2. Keep online marketing and stock up to date.

This should be unnecessary to say, but you should be sure to only use your online marketing strategies to attract customers for products that you have in stock. Every Christmas when I click on a Google AdWords Ad, I now and then come across a product that is out of stock. This is a waste of PPC budget and will furthermore give you frustrated customers.

 

If you have a product that is low on stock you should stop your PPC campaign or at least keep an open eye on it regularly. You should also consider moving the product away from the homepage of your website if it is placed here.

3. Make it easy to wish for your products.

Make sure visitors to your website can easily add your products to their wish list. You can do this by adding a “Tell a friend” or “Add to wish list” button on each of your product pages.

 

If your website does not by default have one of these options available you can must likely find an add-in by searching Google.

 

4. Optimize your AdWords campaigns.

Some time (a month or two) before the holiday sales, you should take a close look at your PPC marketing. Create a set of campaigns that are targeted for the coming holiday sale. If it is Christmas, you could make some ads with a sense of “Christmas spirit”. It is also important to remember in this connection, that the people that you are targeting with your ads are usually not the ones ending up using the product. In your ads it is a good idea to tell people about the special “Christmas advantages” they will get when buying from you. This could be a long refund period; gift-wrapping or other things that can help separate your online store from the crowd.

 

5. Get a hold of the customers as early as possible.

Once the customer has bought their gifts in another shop, you have lost the battle for that customer. A way to catch potential customers for the holiday sales early could be to give them some kid of discount if they buy their presents early. You could offer this discount to people on your mailing list or people that you for some other reasons have caught the attention of.

 

6. Sell more to your existing customers.

It takes time and money to get new customers to your website. An easy way to increase your holiday sales is to sell more to existing customers. There are a lot of ways to do this; an example could be to offer existing customers a discount voucher than can be used next time they buy at your shop, to offer a complementary product when the customer has added a product to the shopping cart. Be creative and try to think of ways you can increase the sales to existing customers.

 

7. Help customers who are looking for presents.

We all know how had it can be to find the right presents for someone. Why not give people that are looking for presents some help to find the right one. You can do this by telling them about this year’s trends and what products are selling well. A lot of people who are shopping for gifts are “playing safe”. Help them to choose their presents by confirming that they are about to make the right choice.

 

If you do not have a “gift finder” on you website, you could make a page where you show a selection of popular products from different price ranges.

 

8. Keep track of your customers.

It is a good idea to regularly keep track of your marketing effort, for example in Google Analytics. This is not just the case in regards to the holiday sales. Make sure that your analytics program is set up properly, so that you can see which of your marketing efforts are working and which are simply a waste of your money.

 

You should also keep an eye on the performance of your PPC campaigns, as the competition will often increases up to the holiday season. Therefore it is very important that you make sure that you ads are ranking the way you want them to.

 

What are your tricks for boosting the holiday sales?

What are your favorite tricks to increase your holiday sales? Please share it with us in the comments.

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Gary Shouldis is a father, husband, business owner and avid blogger. He is the founder of 3Bug Media, a web marketing company helping small businesses grow their online presence and bottom line. When he’s not working, you can usually find him being chased through the park by his 4 children.

6 Responses to 8 Tips to Improve Your Holiday Sales.

  1. John Abrena says:

    Gamification is one great way to boost sales, and increase your traffic on your site. Imagine making a game or contest on your site, and, let’s say, the first 10 winners get good discounts, and the rest who registered for that contest(make sure you track who joined!) will get some kind of compensation (a little discount or a freebie when they shop). Usually, this tactic works when upcoming holidays are near, since people are dying to get less prices for their holiday shopping spree.

  2. Kasper says:

    Hi John.
    Thank you for your valuable input. Yes contests or gamification can also be a great way of getting your customers hook to buy your products, if it is done the right way.

  3. Gamification is a hot topic these days when it comes to engaging your customer base. I think there is so much competition bot on and offline that businesses need to figure out creative ways to stand out and to keep people interested.

  4. Affiliate marketing is another alternative that can be looked into to generate leads during the holidays to boost sales. There are lot of networks online that can help in reaching out to the target market. Google Ad planner gives quiet the insight about the sites demographic break up.

  5. Kasper says:

    Hi Helen.
    Thanks for your input. You are right affiliates can be useful to drive targeted traffic to your site. I also use Google Ad planner to help analyze if the audience of a particular site is in my target group. I think it gives some good insights.

  6. Thanks Helen, Google Adplanner is part of Adwords and is a great tool for getting demographic data. Affiliate marketing can be a great tool for the right product and business. Most small businesses are unaware there are options like this and most don’t realize that all of the big chains use this type of sales channel. Amazon, WalMart and Sears, just to name a few have been doing affiliate marketing for years.

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