Holiday Shopping, Early Bird Style

Holiday shopping can be a very stressful activity, making sure you cover everyone on your shopping list can be a challenge. We do have a good news for business owners though! You want to start marketing to customers as early as possible as studies have shown the people are now, more than ever, shopping earlier.

This trend has seen positive growth because it creates less stress for customers as well as the business owners, and we expect it to keep growing. Fluent, an intelligent customer acquisition company, stated that 1 in 3 Americans started their holiday shopping in September. Interestingly, only about 20% of shoppers procrastinated their shopping until December. For the shoppers who waited until December, 47% of them waited until mid-December or the week before Christmas to do their shopping.

So what does this mean for business owners and their marketing strategies?

One takeaway is that promoting your holiday shopping specials early is important to reach a majority of the shoppers. However, it also means that the procrastinators who are shopping mid to late December will be looking for the best prices and places to shop. According to Google, mobile searches related to “best gift” grew 70% year over year while mobile searches related to cheap or inexpensive gifts grew about 35%. It is important to know your market by knowing statistical research related to the holidays. Other search terms that grew significantly were “unique gifts” that grew by 65% as well as “cool gifts” that grew by 80%.

If you are a business owner, here are some tips to get your business ready for the holiday season!

1. Start Planning Early For The Holiday Shopping Season

Having a marketing plan that allows you to start planning and implementing campaigns for those early bids is just as, if not more, important as focusing on the procrastinators. According to the NRF (National Retail Federation) a majority of customers are now beginning their holiday shopping by Halloween. This means that businesses should start their campaigns the second or third week of October to grab those consumer’s attention. This will also help you prepare for those who will be shopping during the busy Thanksgiving weekend.

2. Compare Last Year’s Data

Knowing where you were last year with sales during the holiday season will help you focus on the products that were the most popular as well as your busiest times of the season.

3. Use Social Media

Social media channels such as Facebook and Instagram are more than brand-awareness. Using images to grab follower’s attention, as well as direct links to the website, will help drive them to your site with a greater likelihood of purchasing a product or service.

4. Customize Ads

The holiday shopping season is the perfect time to create unique ads for your target audience. Adding discounts, promotions or special offers will help increase your conversion rate. When creating advertisements for Google, Facebook or Instagram, you want to have a specific landing page for tracking purposes. This page should be unique to the advertisement.

5. Pinterest

Pinterest is a very well-known platform for researching and finding new products or ideas for gifts. According to Pinterest, 59% of users during the holiday season have bought something they saw on Pinterest. By uploading your businesses products to the site and linking them to your website is a great and easy way to attract new customers who may not have known about your business.

6. Cyber Monday, Retargeting Tuesday

Every consumer knows the discounts that are available during Cyber Monday. Approximately 75% of consumers will use a business if they have sales or discounts available. After Black Friday and Cyber Monday is Retargeting Tuesday to drive those consumers from those two days back to your website. This is where you can use customized ads to convert those customers.

7. Gift Guide

Many consumers search for gift guides when it comes to deciding what to get family members and friends. Creating a gift guide of all price ranges will help your consumers decide what to purchase from your website or store.

8. Mobile Optimization

For those mobile shoppers, make sure that your website it mobile optimized and user-friendly. Research has shown that 48% of online retail purchases during the Thanksgiving weekend occur on mobile. That number seems to only be increasing, make sure you are prepared for those mobile shoppers.

9. Holiday Specific Creatives

By focusing your website, landing page and creatives towards the holidays will help attract those customers who are searching for holiday specific gifts.

10. Holiday Shopping Discounts

Consumers love discounts and will use a business that has a specific sale or promotion happening. If you have discounts or promotions available during the holidays, you want to be able to promote it so current and new customers will be more likely to use your company.

As a business owner, you want to be prepared for the holiday shopping season by creating a marketing campaign that targets those early bird shoppers. By hiring a marketing agency, we will be able to create campaigns geared towards your business and help generate new leads. Contact us today, we are here to answer your questions!

Data from: Fleunt (What’s Trending & Who’s Spending: Holiday Shopping 2016)

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