The days are getting colder and shorter and Halloween is behind us. Christmas trees are finding their way onto store shelves, just like Christmas marketing emails find their way into your inbox. Even if you’re not frequenting shopping malls to enjoy the Christmas Carols, you still know Christmas is coming.
And, just like every other year, it’ll come around a lot quicker than you anticipated.
All marketers know that Christmas is a busy time of year. With potential customers engaged and actively looking for gifts, a little bit of marketing and Christmas cheer on your behalf can reap massive rewards.
And in this article, you’re going to see how.
Goals are what keep us on track and working toward success. To create your goals, simply ask yourself:
What is it that I want to achieve?
Maybe you want more followers on Facebook.
Or you want to sell 25% more in December than November.
It could also be to clock 60 repeat purchases from your existing customers.
Whatever it may be, once it’s defined, you can plan a way to get to those goals.
Before you get too engrossed with selling more this Christmas season, do what you can to avoid a disaster.
You know your inventory, you know what sells the most.
Keep extra stock of popular products, ready to be dispatched. Also keep a higher volume of smaller, cheaper products that may be used as stocking fillers, ready to go.
Good inventory management means that you’ll avoid disappointing customers. You really don’t want to send an email along the lines of ‘sorry, but we don’t actually have what you ordered’.
That’s not how you delight a customer!
Unless this is your first year in business, you’ll know that Black Friday (BF) and Cyber Monday (CM) go hand in hand with Christmas, too.
Because 174 million Americans bought something online between Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday.
This is a massive opportunity for your brand to get a slice of the buying-madness pie.
Of course, these days are about offering massive discounts. But as a forward-thinking marketer, you can go above and beyond.
By adding a little more value to each purchase.
Value added selling is nothing overly new, but it’s a feature that a lot of ecommerce brands overlook.
You can add value by:
#1 Offering free postage on all return items
#2 Adding in a cheap ‘stocking filler’ present for free
#3 Throwing in a discount that’s valid for the next 12 months
With many buyers engaged just as much on BF and CM, it’s a good chance to get your brand name in front of them and grow your email list in the lead up to Christmas.
You’ve more than likely spent a lot of time and resources building your design and branding assets.
Update all this imagery to complement your Christmas campaign. For example, your logo, banner images and Default Social Media images.
Anyone who visits your store should know that you’ve got a Christmas campaign on.
Here you can see how Walmart has created something unique for their Facebook cover image:
You can go all out and create intricate designs or keep it simple just by adding a little red and few cute snowmen. I love sinking my teeth into Canva and all their stunning pre-made design templates!
Furthermore, the use of seasonal product packaging is going to make it easier for your customer to give your product as a gift while you maintain your branding.
In this example, you can see how John Masters Organics has used Christmas-themed packaging.
Product packaging is incredibly important, and using it in this way adds the slightest bit of cheer to your customer’s purchase. It makes it easier for them to simply forward on as a gift, without the need to gift wrap it.
Either way, updating your graphics for Christmas shows that your brand is engaged, active and has a little something special happening for Christmas.
Offer free shipping on everything. Period.
In 2018, free shipping isn’t much of a benefit. In fact, it’s the industry norm. You may have a significantly better product than your competition, but if they offer free shipping, the buyer will more likely be swayed towards them.
In order to offer free shipping, you may need to do some math. You’ll more than likely have to increase your prices and cut spending elsewhere.
That being said, the words ‘FREE SHIPPING’ can make nearly any potential customer overlook a slightly higher price tag.
Furthermore, free EXPRESS shipping can also be of benefit to you.
By offering free express postage, you create a double-edge sales sword.
You’re able to extend marketing campaigns and push your shipping deadlines closer up to December 24th. This means last-minute buyers will find your products more appealing.
Again, it may be very expensive for you to absorb the cost of free express shipping, but consider increasing your prices. Your products are still a solution for last-minute buyers if they’re willing to pay for it.
PPC advertising and Facebook and Google ads are powerful ways to attract new customers.
Chances are that you’re already using them. But you’ll get a better ROI on your Christmas PPC campaigns by using seasonal keywords.
For instance, here you can see the search volume for ‘Wool sweater’ over the last 5 years using Google Trends.
Some keywords that you’ve decided to not use may have an increase around November as people start to look for Christmas gifts.
This means that you can have some quick (and cheap) wins by reassessing which keywords you decide to advertise on.
A simple landing page with your products shown off among other complementary products can be a great way to help solve a buyer’s problem.
“Best presents for outdoorsmen”
“Best Christmas gifts for hikers under $50”
“Last-Minute gifts for mom”
Here’s an example of a gift guide for travelers:
Think of similar titles that apply to your product and then find other products that fall into these categories. Bring all the products together and showcase them on your webpage.
With a little Ecommerce SEO and social media sharing, you’ll draw more attention to your own products as well as the others that you’ve mentioned.
This has the added effect of helping you network. Finding complementary products and working with them help you get in front of another companies audience.
For example, let’s say that you sell car accessories and your largest buying persona is men aged 22-35. One would assume that many of these men would also be interested in the outdoors – camping, hiking, shooting, so on and so forth.
Consider working with an outdoor supply company and creating content that helps you get in front of their audience – and vice versa.
As you can see, it doesn’t take much to create something that goes above and beyond for the Christmas period. These concepts require very little investment in time and money but can lead to some pretty impressive results – if you plan accordingly.
The biggest challenge of the Christmas period though is after Christmas. How do you make those that bought from you in January return to you multiple times throughout the next year? Crack this, and you’ll have well and truly made the most out of your Christmas period!
What are some of the most effective marketing ideas that you’ve implemented over Christmas? Let us know in the comments!
Phil Forbes, Marketer at Packhelp
Phil is a hairy Australian guy living in Warsaw, Poland where he creates content for Packhelp and gets it in front of the most relevant eyeballs. He takes care of expatspoland and loves his dog, Star Wars, and Dinosaurs in no particular order.
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