When you think about the holiday season and the buying process, what do you think of? Do you automatically think about toys or electronics? The fact is people buy all kinds of things during the holiday season so don’t count your products or services out.
For example I know people who are looking for a new washer, dryer, refrigerator. Those aren’t things you necessarily connect with during the holiday buying season but they are.
I know I have a list of items that have nothing to do with the holiday but they are products I want or need.
The “holiday” season for a business could be:
St. Patrick’s Day
4th of July
New Years Day
Grandmother and Grandfathers Day
Mother and Fathers Day and the list could go on and on.
Let’s talk about some of the things you can do to market your products or services. I’ll share tips for physical as well as digital products.
Offer Expedited Shipping and Shipping Prediction
Even if you don’t normally offer expedited shipping, in the holiday season you absolutely should. People need to know their gifts will arrive before Thanksgiving, Christmas or New Year.
Install a shipping calculator on your site. That’s where, when someone checks a shipping option, your site tells them:
“Your item will arrive by December 22, 2016.”
This helps people plan for which shipping options they need.
Offer Gift Wrapping
People will often order gifts for loved ones online. Naturally, they’ll want their gifts wrapped for them.
They may mail the item to themselves already pre-gift wrapped to give to someone by hand, or they might mail the gift to them directly. You should accommodate both.
Downplay Non-Gift Product Lines
Let’s say you run a high end clothing store that sells mostly jeans online. However, the reality is nobody buys $200 jeans for their friends.
Instead, most people buy their friends less expensive items like jewelry. Instead of prominently displaying your jeans like you do the rest of the year, you’re better off downplaying the jeans and making the jewelry more prominent.
Focus your marketing and your inventory on products that are more likely to be gifts.
Sell Gift Certificates
It may be a cliche, but when someone doesn’t know what to buy another person, the most common gift is a gift certificate. It’s not as romantic as knowing the perfect gift, but it’s the reality of holiday shopping.
If you aren’t selling gift certificates, you’re going to miss out on a large segment of the holiday shopping market.
Remember that online gift certificates aren’t enough. You need to physically mail a gift certificate, as people want to give something that can be held in their hands. A gift!
This could be a great tip especially if you are a service based business. For instance, you have a cleaning company. You could offer a “holiday” special which includes special pricing on carpet cleaning, or house cleaning. Believe it or not one of the best gifts you can give someone is to have their house cleaned.
If you sell digital products you can offer gift certificates for your products. You’d be surprised at the number of people who want to start the new year off by starting or growing their own business.
Here’s the interesting thing. There are a lot of people who wait till this time of year to see if they get a “special” deal on the products they want and yours could be one of them.
Make Products Refundable
Give a receipt with every purchase and make sure it’s refundable for at least a month after the holiday season. The reality is, of course, that with a product purchased online very few people will actually return a product.
People who buy gifts for others always worry about whether or not someone will like the gift. If someone has no use for a gift, they’ll often just return the gift for the money.
Even though many people will not take advantage of this, it still helps people relieve their doubts by having the option.
Let’s focus in on some service based products
Make holiday only offers
This could be a great option for your digital products. Why not create a bundle that’s not available during the year. Clearly show people what the items cost separately and then how much they are saving. This could give your business a real boost in sales.
If you sell products or services consider creating your own holiday catalog.
This is a great way to showcase all of the products you have. It’s a strategy I plan on trying this season.
What I like about this idea is that once the holiday is over you can edit your catalog and share it on line during the rest of the year.
When you think about it this is a really good idea. Not everyone knows all about the great products you offer. Why not give them the information packaged in an easy way to read and use.
Run your own online “day of sale”
Have you ever watched shows like Oprah and Ellen where they do 12 days of…Each day they give away something. You could take that concept and every day for 12 days offer one of your products at a “special” price.
If you are a virtual assistant you could do this as well. It’s not limited to any one profession or industry. Think outside the box.
Don’t count yourself out
When you think about gift giving don’t you want to give a gift someone really wants? Sure you do! So what if someone you know wants to really start their own podcast to share their knowledge and expertise? They would greatly appreciate a course that outlines exactly what they need to do and comes complete with checklists and more!
Suppose you know someone who’s struggling in their business? Wouldn’t they appreciate a month’s worth of business training and access to a coach? It could be the exact thing they need to move their business forward.
If this really is the time for giving why not give the gift someone really wants and might not give themselves (although they know they really need it.)
There are of course other times that you can plan ahead for such as:
School’s Out Promotions
Back to school
Spring, Summer, Fall, and Winter
Annual events: sporting, industry-related, recreational, vocational
Actually, I could go on and on!
How do you plan on marketing your business this holiday season?
Leave your thoughts and comments below.
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Be Savvy and Successful!
Toni Nelson – Build Authority Expert
P.S. If you feel like you’ve maybe missed the boat for this holiday season you can set your plan in motion today. How? By getting your Client Attracting Cash Calendar Marketing Planner. Follow this link: Cash Calendar Planner