Ho, ho, ho! The holiday season is upon us, and I'm not just talking about the smell of pumpkin spice lattes (although, people do go crazy for them). It's the perfect time of year for business owners, entrepreneurs, and brand builders like yourself to make some serious noise in the market. What's the occasion? Our good friend #BlackFriday of course!
Now, don't let the name fool or scare you. Black Friday might sound like the sequel to a horror movie, but it's a great time for your business to shine brighter than your neighbor's over-the-top Christmas light display. Now, how are you going to accomplish this? Keep reading.
Deck the Halls with Boughs of Strategy
Successful Black Friday and holiday sales start with planning. Let's face it - you won't have a holiday party without a menu or guest list, would you? If you're trying to avoid chaos and confusion, of course not. Think the same way when planning for the season. Here are a few tips to get you on the right track:
Know your Elves (Customers) Understand who your customers are and what they want. Are they more Santa-based (loving great deals), Scroogers (needing heavy discounts before they buy), or Grinchers (buying everything at the last minute)?
Make a List, Check it Twice Create a detailed plan for your sales. What products are you planning to discount? By how much? For how long? Think about this... even Santa has a list, right?
Dress Up Your Store (Physical or Virtual) Make sure your store is inviting and festive for the occasion. If you're online-based, make sure your website is prepped and ready to handle heavy holiday traffic.
Jingle All the Way to the Bank
Now that you've got your plan in place, it's time to put it into action.
Spread the Holiday Cheer Announce your sales early and often across platforms and channels - social media, email newsletters, and of course, your website. Don't forget to check whether your message is mobile-friendly, because Rudolph may not be the only one sending customers your way.
Offer Complimentary Gift Wrapping It's a small thing, but could reap big rewards. Little things like this help in building customer loyalty. Imagine you sending someone a gift and it's beautifully wrapped?
Provide Top-Notch Customer Service Remember, 'tis the season of giving. Go above and beyond in helping your customers. People remember experiences so that one-time shopper can easily turn into a loyal customer.
Don't Forget Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday in Your Holiday Sales
Black Friday's lesser-known cousins, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday, are additional opportunities to boost your holiday sales. Extend your deals or offer new ones to keep the holiday spirit (and your revenue) flowing. Here's a fun fact: Cyber Monday has surpassed Black Friday, bringing $1.8B more in sales.
Post-Holiday Analysis: Understanding What Went Down the Chimney
After the holiday rush is over, take some time to reflect on what worked and what didn't. This can help when planning for other opportunities throughout the year.
Review Your Sales Stats You've heard it before, but here it is again. LOOK AT THE DATA. Which products were popular? Which discounts generated the most sales? Use this data to see where your customers came from, what their wants and needs are, and to help in creating your strategy next year.
Ask for Customer Feedback Send out a survey or simply ask customers for their thoughts. This gives you insight, but also shows your customers that you value their opinion.
Take a Break You've earned it! Now's the time to take a breather, sit back, and relax (even if it's only for a day). When you recharge, you can take down all the holiday decorations and get back to the day-to-day.
In the end, Black Friday is more than just a one-day sales event (in fact, 59% of customers start their holiday shopping in August or September). You may have even seen Christmas in July sales. No matter what, this is an opportunity to connect with your customers, build your brand, and set the tone for a successful holiday season. So, put on your Santa hat and get ready to celebrate because the holiday season can make your registers "jingle" all the way!
Use this guide to make the most of your holiday promotions. Remember, "sleighing" your holiday sales is more than just selling products or services; it's about creating an enjoyable shopping experience that leaves your customers feeling merry and bright. Now, go deck those halls and make some sales!