Do you want your holiday marketing plan to be successful?
Start preparing your shop for the holiday rush with this handy to-do list that includes important seasonal dates and promotional tips.
1. Check The Dates
Mark your calendar with major holidays, as well as shopping dates around the world. Your local shipping carrier may also post a holiday deadline bulletin with suggested cutoff times for each mail class.
2016 Holiday Season Key Dates:
- November 24 – Thanksgiving (United States)
- November 25 – Black Friday (US)
- November 26 – Small Business Saturday (US)
- November 27 – Advent begins
- November 28- Cyber Monday or Mega Monday (US/United Kingdom/Canada/Australia) Cyber Monday extends to Tuesday in Australia
- December 5 – St. Nicholas’ Eve (Europe)
- December 6 – St. Nicholas’ Day (Europe)
- December 24 – Hanukkah begins
- December 24 – Christmas Eve
- December 25 – Christmas Day
- December 26 – Kwanzaa Begins
- December 26 – Boxing Day (US/UK/Canada/Australia)
- December 31 – New Year’s Eve
- January 1 – New Year’s Day
Peak Day Promotion
Thanksgiving Day: November 24, 2016
Black Friday: November 25, 2016
Cyber Monday: November 28, 2016
Green Monday: December 12, 2016
Free Shipping Day: December 16, 2016
2. Reconnect With Old Customers
Come November, consumers will be on the hunt for “early access” and “exclusive deals” from their favorite brands. Use this time to reward your most loyal followers and reconnect with shoppers who are in danger of slipping away.
3. Find Marketplaces
You can spend all of your time trying to push new shoppers to your site – or you can go find them where they already shop. No digital marketing plan is complete without at least considering marketplaces, and chief among them is Amazon. If you’re not already set up on the site, now is the time to open an account.
4. Start Content Marketing
Now is the time to start publishing 2016 Christmas shopping guides and other helpful content. Ensure that search engines have plenty of time to index your content before shoppers begin Googling for buying guides or product information.
5. Create Free Shipping Offers
Your store’s free shipping offers are an important part of your holiday marketing plan. Depending on the survey, something like 47 to 54 percent of all online orders include some form of free shipping. What’s more, there is strong evidence that shoppers will spend more to get free shipping, perhaps, even 30 percent more.
6. The Power Of Gift Cards
While not every store carries digital products, almost everyone can offer digital gift cards.
Not only is this a way to squeeze out more sales at the last minute, but also a significant number of gift cards are never used. A few years ago, the Wall Street Journal, citing CEB TowerGroup research, reported that $41 billion in gift cards weren’t redeemed between 2005 and 2011. In other words, gift cards very often represent free money for savvy retailers.
My Advice: Keep a shared, running spreadsheet with your partners and employees of any offers you have planned, as well as their starting and end dates, how each promotion or sale works and any other information that could help a store representative field customers’ questions.