When you are the new kid on the block, often you are just wondering how to get your head above water. You need to break even quickly so you can start making a profit, and the holiday shopping season is far from your mind. However, no matter what time of the year you open, it is never too early to start gearing up for “that” time of the year when sales tend to skyrocket. Here are 5 ways to do just that.
Start Building Loyalty
Reward your customers for shopping with you. Start a rewards program, whether it is a percent off coupon for every $100 spent, some sort of “bucks” that can be cashed in around the holidays, or some other incentive, give them a reason to keep shopping with you. If that reason is something that encourages them to come shop around the holidays, such as a coupon or credit that is good starting the day after Thanksgiving, even better.
Use Text and Email
Have a way for customers to sign up for text and email alerts. If they can sign up on paper in the store and on a website, all the better. They need a reason, so throw them an exclusive discount now and then so they know that signing up was a great idea. Maybe even offer a coupon for signing up. Be sure to send sales notices and such in a way that they are glad for the information and do not feel spammed. When it comes time for the holidays, you will have a group of people ripe and ready for seasonal discounts and sales promotions that you can communicate through this list.
July, September, March, or any other month can play host to a holiday preview event. Advertise a one day sale as a taste of what is to come. Make it a preview of what customers can expect on Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
Black Friday/ Cyber Monday
Start now advertising any special deals or promotions that may be happening. You could even do a Grand Opening II event and give away door prizes and offer free snacks of some sort in conjunction with those famous shopping days. You have to have attractive “hook” deals and advertise them heavily to get people to come when you are new. Think of a few products, advertise deep discounts, and then offer many smaller discounts. The hooks will get them there and they will hopefully buy more while they are there.
Hit Social Media Hard
Do Twitter parties. Offer Facebook giveaways for gift cards and coupons to use during the holiday shopping season, and offer extra entries for likes and shares. Utilize the power of social media to get the word out not only about your business, but about why customers should shop with you when it comes time to purchase gifts for their loved ones. This can start as early as September after the back to school and Labor Day sales.
The key is to get the word out about your business and build hype about how awesome the holiday shopping season is going to be with your business at the same time. The trick is to do it in a way that keeps people interested, encourages them to shop with you, and not make them feel like you are spamming them. It is a fine line, but the payoff could be a spectacular first holiday season as a business owner.