Today, online retailers are faced with an increasingly competitive sales landscape.
So there has never been a better time to review your strategy for those key periods of the sales calendar where customer spending appetites are at their highest. Whether it’s Black Friday or Easter, making the most of these periods is crucial for you to remain competitive throughout the year.
Preparing for these peak dates can help you to better manage stock and tailor your marketing efforts for even greater success. Likewise, knowing when rushes are coming gives you the chance to organise orders in advance, allowing more time to focus on your customers when it really matters.
Here are six winning practices retailers should roll out around key seasonal events:
Seasonal products and bundles
Pumpkin spiced lattes, Easter eggs and everything in-between – there is a never-ending range of seasonal products that generate excitement amongst consumers.
Seasonal products are effective because they create the idea that they are only available for a limited time. With the additional use of sales language, such as ‘while stocks last’, you can develop a sense of urgency amongst consumers to buy the product before time runs out.
Seasonal products can also be marketed out-of-season, building up the anticipation of what’s coming. With hype building, and consumer urgency on the rise, seasonal products put you in prime position to capitalise on festive periods throughout the year.
Pre-sales to get over the ‘drop’
The ‘drop’ is something any retailer must contend with; in anticipation of a sales period, purchase levels go down. However, you can manage this using pre-sales.
Pre-sales involve introducing promotions and discounts ahead of the primary sales event, be that through a targeted sales promotion to clear inventory of specific products or product lines, or through a longer-running series of sales promotions.
As we move closer to Christmas, many retailers will start to roll out advent calendars, both physical and interactive - a classic seasonal game.
Apart from generating buzz amongst your community, these calendars are a fantastic tool to use around seasonal sale periods. Particularly with online-based calendars, consumers can constantly engage with your content, feeding their excitement about what discount or prize they might receive on each day of the sales season.
You may also have 12 days of Christmas, a Diwali lights campaign, a Valentine’s seasonal game and so on. With this increased community engagement, there is no better time to market your seasonal offers to consumers, informing them of what’s on sale and for how long.
By posting interactive questions on your social media platforms, you can gain powerful insights into your community’s collective thoughts, inspiring future promotions, product or service offers.
The go-to present for people who are difficult to buy for, gift or e-gift cards are a superb way for you to build stronger relationships with customers, as well as attract new customers to the store.
A staple on Black Friday and Cyber Monday, flash sales are excellent at generating sales and excitement around specific products. Lasting anything from two hours to two days, these sales have the capacity to bring consumers to fever pitch when planned correctly.
Their effectiveness is driven by combining competitive prices with limited time and stock. With the right timing, pricing and audience targeting, this combination can create strong excitement amongst your community, bringing with it the potential to elevate sales.
Referral bonuses are a fantastic way to engage current customers and reach potential customers. Whether it be a discount off their next purchase or a chance to win a prize in a raffle, rewarding customers for sharing your brand is a cost-effective form of marketing.
Referral bonuses are overwhelmingly effective due to the element of trust which is present between consumers. Whether it be their partner, a friend or a family member, consumers trust their close ones more than advertisements they see in the media, offering a fantastic opportunity for you to utilise a referral scheme.