The halls are decked with holly, Santa’s double-checked his list, and you’re ready to wrap up another successful holiday season to close out Q4 with a revenue-centric bang. Haven’t made your revenue goal yet for the season? Don’t fret, there’s still plenty of time to capture those last-minute holiday dollars. Here are our favorite marketing campaigns designed to boost last-minute holiday retail sales, all perfect for putting that shiny bow on your year-end income statement.
Last-Minute Holiday Shopper Stats to Keep You Motivated
There’s money (loads of it) to be made in these last days of the holiday season. Nearly 40% of shoppers will wait until the last 10 days before Christmas to buy their gifts. It’s not laziness or forgetfulness that causes so many shoppers to wait until the last minute to purchase gifts; studies show that most last-minute buyers are waiting longer and longer to decide on their final options.
They know that the closer they get to Christmas Day, the better the shopping deals.
Shoppers typically spend about 13 days researching and searching for an item before they make a final purchase decision. Because of the last-minute nature of their buying behavior, shoppers are expecting to receive same-day or next day delivery on their online purchases. Despite waiting until the last minute and wanting – err – needing next day or same-day shipping, 47% of shoppers don’t want to pay for shipping.
The need for immediate ownership is a strong catalyst for driving in-store retail sales during the holidays. The longer consumers wait to make their purchase, the less likely they are to purchase their product online, creating the perfect combination for retail store owners looking to drive holiday sales.
Four Marketing Campaigns To Boost Last-Minute Holiday Retail Sales
1) Offer and Promote “Green” Gift Wrapping
Between hanging those holiday decorations, attending office work parties, and entertaining children on their winter break, it’s hard for customers to find the free time to wrap all of their holiday gifts. This need creates a perfect opportunity for your store to pick up this busy shopper’s holiday retail sales.
How? Offer gift wrapping on location at the time of purchase!
For stores that want to take their gift wrapping offer up a notch, consider providing your customers with an eco-friendly gift wrapping option. Did you know that between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day, Americans generate about 7 million additional pounds of waste? Your green wrapping options could include using recycled paper, colorful pages torn from magazines, newspaper, catalogs, etc. Other green wrapping options include using reusable and recyclable gift boxes or bags.
Not only does offering an eco-friendly gift-wrapping option help to differentiate your store from competitors, it can also endear your brand to audiences that emotionally connect with environmentally-friendly business practices.
Don’t keep your gift wrapping prowess to yourself either! Be sure to let your customers know about your store’s offering by sharing pictures of your gift wrapped boxes on social media and through promotional emails. You should also promote your gift-wrapping station with in-store signage and counter cards.
Promotional Tip: Have an online store? Great! You don’t need a brick-and-mortar store to offer your customers free gift wrapping. During the checkout process, give your customers the option of receiving their purchases gift wrapped by your loving fulfillment team. Be sure to promote this offer to your customers in order to push sales.
2) Create an In-Store Holiday Recharge Zone
We’re all guilty of leaving some gift shopping to the last minute. In fact, about 126 million of us like to wait until “Super Saturday.” This is the Saturday before Christmas when last minute shoppers purchase the remaining items on their list. Because of the hectic nature of eleventh-hour shopping, consider opening waiting lounges or relaxing areas to help bring some peace and serenity to an otherwise hectic shopping day.
Malls like Westfield’s Century City shopping center in Los Angeles have already implemented waiting lounges. These lounges aren’t just for bored dads and angsty teens to hang out in while their friends and family shop; they provide shoppers of all types with a space to rest and recharge from the stress of shopping without having to leave the mall (or your store).
Stores with comfortable rest areas encourage shoppers to spend more time in store. You can add other perks in the lounge like small snacks, free water, and hot coffee or tea. You could also provide tablets for children to play with or other small toys to keep parents who are staying with a child occupied and happy.
As you arrange your space, make sure that the seating in the lounge area is facing outward toward the merchandise, so that shopping is still at the top of your guest’s mind and in front of their eyeballs.
Promotional Tip: Don’t let your lounge area be a surprise to customers! Create a video that provides potential shoppers with a tour of the space. Set their expectations and show off a little, then share that video on your social media and other marketing channels.
3) Add a Festive Social Flare
Social media is one of the most powerful ways to connect with your target audience and loyal fans. Studies show that customers that engage with a brand on social media are more likely to turn into paying customers.
Use your social media accounts to keep your brand, products, and services at the front of your customer’s mind during the holiday season. Here are some festive social flare ideas to get you started:
- Promote a deal-of-the-day product offer.
- Share photos and videos of your company celebrating the holiday fun.
- Remind shoppers of last-minute deals and flash promotions happening.
- Get them excited for 2019 by talking about new product announcements and lines.
- Thank your customers for a wonderful year.
Promotional Tip: Increase the visibility of your promotional content by using your social advocates to help promote your content through their personal social media accounts. Using a tool built especially for advocacy marketing (like SocialToaster), your biggest fans can join your advocacy marketing program by linking their preferred social media account to your program. Once they’ve joined, your brand can then provide them with content to share with their friends and family.
4) Extend Your Shopping Hours
Keep in mind that 46% of shoppers want to touch and feel a product in-store before they make a purchase. Extending your store hours is one of the easiest steps you can take to relieving stressed out customers and providing them with gift-buying opportunities that fit into their hectic holiday schedules. Extended hours give customers more time to browse, shop, and make purchasing decisions without the constraint of regular store hours.
Promotional Tip: If your point-of-sale (POS) system allows it, set up mobile POS points on the sales floor. This will clear up space at your main checkout counters and get people rung up faster. Create content pieces that reflect these new checkout options and showcase how customer friendly they are.
Happy Holidays from SocialToaster
From all of us at SocialToaster, we’d like to wish you a Happy Holidays! If you’re interested in creating your own advocacy marketing program to promote your content on social media, consider us your little helpers. Request a free demo today and learn how advocacy marketing can increase the reach and ROI of your marketing content.