Welcome to the holiday season! As online sellers, we have officially entered the time of year where our sales will be at their highest. I don’t know about you, but I LIVE for the holiday selling season! Here are a few tips to make sure your business is ready for the season and make sure that those looking to buy that special something get it from you!
Stock Up on Inventory
The key to a successful online business is to be ahead of the game and the only way to do so is to have the inventory on hand to sell. Don’t go crazy and end up in the poor house, just analyze your sales from previous years and try to make sure that you have a few more of each item than you sold during the last holiday season. Have your suppliers on speed dial in case you have an emergency and run out, and make sure to stock up on everything your business needs, including your shipping supplies, packaging materials, business cards, etc.
Offer your Customers a Unique Experience
Customers have so many options, especially during the holiday season. They are being bombarded on all sides by advertising, and everyone is claiming to be the “best.” Make sure to let your customers know what is unique about your business, how buying from you is better for them, and don’t forget to capitalize on your great customer service and/or return policies.
Draw people in by offering them a new customer or holiday discount. You can do a percentage, a coupon, offering reduced prices on certain items, or offering a one day only discount, such as a “Black Friday”(November 23rd) or “Cyber Monday”(November 26th) discount. An incredible amount of consumer studies have emphasized the fact that customers are drawn to items that are “reduced” in price (even if the item really isn’t any cheaper after the discount than it was to begin with). This is a common tactic you’ll see at retail stores everywhere because it works. Remember, only discount items that you can afford to drop the price on, so that you don’t eat into your profit too much. If offering a discount means you sell a higher quantity, isn’t it worth it?
Make sure to keep your orders straight and your shipping deadlines met. The last thing you want is to get a new customer with stellar marketing, only to lose them due to a mishap or error on your part. Keep up on your inventory using spreadsheets or a great app like Stitch Labs, making sure to keep an accurate count so that you avoid selling an item you don’t have on hand. Keep your customer service rating high by making sure that your customers know the last day they can place an order to have it delivered by Christmas. Be sure to have dates on hand for all available options, expedited, standard, domestic or international, and so on.
Promote Your Store through Online Media
Get the word out about your business by using online marketing tools and social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Google Business Pages. The more traffic to your site and the more people that know about your store, the more business you will do. Get ahead of the game by getting your store in the public eye now, before the craziness of the holiday selling season is really upon us.
After following these simple steps, your online business will be ready for the holiday season. Don’t lose out on sales by not being prepared this holiday season.