If you’re a business owner, Christmas time probably stirs up more mixed emotions than Frosty the Snowman.
On the one hand, it can be extremely stressful to plan and implement your Christmas strategies, but on the other hand, it’s the biggest sales season of the year.
So, you’ve probably already prepared your holiday sales, but what else can you do?
Other promotions: Don't conform to the same days as everyone else
Having grown up in the U.S., I’m quite used to the hype surrounding Black Friday. Since moving across the pond five years ago, I’ve noticed the Black Friday hype-train getting bigger and bigger in Europe every year. With so many retailers taking part in the sales season, it’s hard to get a step ahead of the competition.
Some retailers have gotten wise and started promoting “countdown to Black Friday” sales and similar concepts, trying to beat out their competitors. This is definitely one way to go.
Another option would be to hold special offers around Black Friday. For example, Green Monday (December 11th) has become more popular as the best December sales day. Super Saturday offers up savings to consumers as the final Saturday before Christmas.
Who says you need to follow the same calendar as everyone else?
In fact, you might want to create your own calendar (or at least place a notification bar in your header) informing customers of upcoming promotions that you want to promote.
Otherwise, you could also send out coupons and discount codes to your previous customers. Nothing shows your appreciation for someone’s business like giving them a discount. Now, that’s the way to build customer loyalty!
Of course, you can use classic marketing tactics, like retargeting, to get previous buyers, browsers, and cart abandoners back on your site.
Get more Christmasy: Create an Ambiance for your Customers
I used to work in retail. One cool thing about that job was that I could choose what we played on the radio as long as it was tasteful.
However, around Christmas, we had to play the all-Christmas song radio station. Now, I’m no Grinch, but I think nine straight hours of Christmas music could drive anyone insane.
My boss’s rationale was that Christmas music made shoppers more willing to spend money and buy gifts. It’s hard to argue with that logic. Christmas music does indeed put most people in a jolly mood, and that’s definitely not a bad thing if they’re browsing around your shop.
No, I’m not telling you to put Christmas music on your website (though that is an option as well), but a little design tweak could really put customers in the mood to shop.
Adding some special effects to the header of your page isn’t so complicated and adds a bit of that Christmas spirit to your shop, especially if you use one of the big shop software companies (e.g. this “White Christmas” theme on Shopify).
A small investment can add a little Christmas cheer to your website
Additionally, you could have a little fun with your logo. Add a Santa hat or change the colors to fit the holiday spirit. Look at what Twitter and YouTube have done with their logos.
If this doesn’t make you want to tweet, I don’t know what will.
Sure, some of these changes won’t have measurable effects, but Christmas is also about spirit and having fun. Just as you use social media to give your brand some personality, don’t miss out on the opportunity to do the same for your website.
Another similar tactic to having Christmas themes on your page is to create a special landing page just for Christmas and to advertise this in your paid ads. The landing page could, for example, provide discounts, or simply list all the items being promoted during the holiday sales season.
Trusted Shops created a beautifully designed Christmas landing page to promote some of their free whitepapers as “gifts” to current and potential customers.
The clever design displays 4 gifts that reveal themselves once the visitor’s mouse scrolls over them.
Christmas does have an ugly side. Don’t worry- Santa Claus is real! I’m talking about fake shops. With the average British family spending over £800 on Christmas, it’s no wonder everyone’s looking for the best deals out there and you can bet crooks are figuring out a way to take advantage of this fact.
This, unfortunately, leads to a sharp increase in the amount of fake shops out there. It’s sad, but it’s not surprising, is it? There are some tell-tale signs that you’re browsing on a fake site. There’s poor English, long domain names, and shady terms and conditions, just to name a few.
However, there are things you can do to instill trust in your shop. For starters, getting a closed review platform on your shop is probably the best thing you can. Considering that 85% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations, you should look at reviews as social proof and a form of word-of-mouth.
Not only that, but Google sees reviews as fresh content, which they definitely factor into their ranking algorithms. With a constant flow of reviews, you can count on this boosting your ranking and discoverability.
Having a third-party auditor certify your shop with a “trustmark” is also a good idea for building trust. These trustmarks, like the ones provided by Trusted Shops, insure your customers in case of non-delivery, damages during shipments, etc.
Seeing a recognised seal of approval that includes a money-back guarantee simply puts customers at ease when shopping somewhere new. Naturally, having reviews and a trustmark would help improve conversions throughout the year as well.
There is so much you can do to improve sales during the holiday season. Whether you promote a sale, tinsel up your website, or gather the testimonials of your happy customers for social proof, you should do something for your online shop this Christmas to boost those conversions.
Hopefully, you can then ride that momentum into the new year like Santa on his sleigh.