As you’re no doubt aware, the final few weeks of the calendar year represent a major commercial blitz. For shoppers, the period between Thanksgiving and New Year’s represents a prime opportunity to score deals on gifts, and to spend any end-of-year bonus money. For retailers, this season can be make or break. Indeed, many businesses depend on a successful end-of-year shopping season to make their annual sales quotas.
Of course, end-of-year success rarely happens by accident. You’ll need to be intentional in crafting the right strategy if you want to stand out from the competition, and ultimately to bring new shoppers into the fold.
A good place to begin: Develop a robust vision for Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Here are a few specific considerations that may help you get your end-of-the-year sale season off to a good start.
Get Ready for Black Friday and Cyber Monday
Black Friday and Cyber Monday aren’t just two of the biggest sales days of the year, they represent the true beginning of this make-or-break final stretch of the year. We’ve got a few tips to reap maximum benefit from these important dates.
1) Start now!
First and foremost, your holiday season marketing isn’t anything to leave until the last minute. Remember that many consumers start planning, budgeting, shopping around, and comparing options well before the holiday shopping season, so you’ll want to start promoting your upcoming deals now. Also note that an effective marketing campaign will require plenty of assets, from copywriting to imagery to videos; you can’t create all that in an afternoon, so take the time to develop your resources now.
2) Consider your offers.
Remember that, in the holiday rush, you’ll need to do anything you can to stand out from the competition, and to give your shoppers a reason to choose you over other retailers. To maximize your competitive advantage, start brainstorming some special offers or deals you can make, whether that’s free shipping, free gifts for orders over a certain dollar amount, etc.
3) Have an abandoned cart strategy.
Here’s a tip for e-commerce retailers, in particular. During the holiday frenzy, you’re sure to have some shoppers who add items to their cart but then don’t pull the trigger. One of the best ways to maximize your profits is to recover as many abandoned carts as you can. There are plenty of ways to do so, but a remarketing campaign, focused on outreach to folks who’ve visited your site without completing a transaction, can be especially effective. Make sure you have some ad budget set aside for this.
4) Give your website a tune-up.
If all goes well, your website will see a significant spike in traffic during the holiday season. Now’s the time to verify that your site is well-equipped to handle that traffic, and to generate as many conversions as possible. A few particular items of note:
- Double- and triple-check that your website design is responsive, well-suited to mobile browsers.
- Do a speed check, confirming that your site loads quickly and performs well on all browser and device types.
- Be sure you have clear calls to action across the site, and easy-to-spot contact information.
- Assess your site’s navigational structure. Can viewers find the info they need in three clicks or fewer? If not, consider simplifying your site architecture.
5) Start creating some emails.
Email marketing is one of the most effective tools in your seasonal marketing toolbox, allowing you to send personalized offers directly to your consumers’ inboxes. Be sure that your email marketing assets are ready to go, drafting a seasonal email template, ensuring your subscribers are properly segmented into different lists, and even sending a preliminary email to get people excited about the upcoming shopping season.
6) Think about black friday and cyber monday.
Hopefully, Black Friday and Cyber Monday will net you plenty of sales. But keep in mind that these days can also be effective simply for raising awareness about your brand and its value proposition. Some folks may need a little more time before they choose to buy from you, so consider ways to extend your seasonal offerings deeper into the holiday season.
‘Tis the Season for Robust Digital Marketing
The end of the year can be a boon for retailers. To make the most of it, make sure your marketing affairs are in order. We’d love to help. As you consider the upcoming season, reach out to enCOMPASS Agency to schedule a digital marketing consultation with us.
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