HARDISON’S TIPS – DECEMBER 2, 2020 – Ways to Increase Christmas Sales for Retail Stores
Children may dream of sugarplums, but for retailers, there’s only one vision that matters during the Christmas season: the sales graph. And as the Christmas holiday season is make-or-break time for many retail stores, the overwhelming question is how to get more Christmas sales and make that graph climb as steeply as possible.
The obvious way to get more sales is to get more people into your retail store. Assuming you have a quality product or service, the more people who see or experience what you offer, the more sales you’ll make. With a little effort and some ingenuity, that’s not as hard as you think. Use one or more of these ideas to create your own Christmas retail rush.
Have a Sale
Sound obvious? Before you dismiss this idea out of hand, consider this: pretty much every retail store of every size has some kind of Christmas season sale—because they work.
Now consider this: what if you didn’t just have a sale but had one of the sales that just about everyone wanted to attend?
How? Keep these tips in mind:
- Offer one big bargain a day. Offering big discounts (30% or more) on one well-known item each day to bring Christmas shoppers in can work for you if you have well-known brand merchandise or particular items that people are looking for.
- Make it a discount, not a thing. In a flier recently, a retailer offered a free pair of socks to anyone spending over $20 in their store over their three-day pre-Christmas sale. But what if you feel you have enough socks or that socks just aren’t very Christmassy? They’ve lost you. On the other hand, everyone can appreciate a discount.
- Make sure your discount is worthwhile. Shoppers are used to being spoiled. So puny little 5, 10 or even 20% discounts aren’t going to cut it unless you do something like a 20% off storewide sale. On individual items, the higher the discount, the better. Shoppers will compare.
And advertise your sale heavily on the most appropriate marketing channels for your ideal customers—social media, newspapers, radio, etc. People need to hear about it if they’re going to turn out and give you the chance to make more Christmas sales.
Hold an Event
As I write this, the Business in Action group in my town is holding a Moonlight Madness event. There will be fire-wielders, jugglers and musicians performing, and, of course, Santa will be visiting.
Families who come downtown get all kinds of free entertainment—and lots of opportunities to get their Christmas shopping done while all the downtown businesses are open until midnight with special sales. If your town doesn’t have something like this going on this Christmas season, what would it take to get such an event going next year?
There’s nothing to prevent you from holding an event of your own either. The trick is to plan something that will tie into your products or services in some way.
For instance, a kitchen store could hold a cooking class and benefit from increased sales of the products used in the class. A yoga studio could hold a free class to encourage January signups—and offer gift certificates to encourage participants to spread the word.
Put your thinking cap on and ask yourself, “Why would I go to that (event)?” In other words, what’s the benefit to the customer? No benefit equals no turnout.