5 Tips to Maximize Your Small Business's Holiday Sales
With #SmallBusinessSaturday coming up and the holiday shopping season already kicking off, small businesses are looking to maximize sales and expand their customer base. Here are five suggestions for entrepreneurs to have in mind when marketing their business this winter.
1. Increase Your Marketing
It may seem second nature to some, but the holiday shopping season is where a significant portion of your marketing budget should be spent. Now is the time to capture the attention of consumers shopping for gifts and looking to spend their end of year bonuses. Luckily, there are many ways to increase one's marketing and you don't have to break the bank to do so as even incremental increases can yield results. Finding and testing new places to advertise, increasing spending and frequency on existing marketing channels, and reaching out to past clients and customers are just a few common ways a business can get their offerings in front of more potential customers.
2. Use Digital Media and Have a Good Website
Window shoppers are the worst, but a good website could help convert them to paying customers. During the holiday season especially, shoppers are finicky and can have trouble deciding what to purchase. When someone isn't ready to buy, you don't want to lose the lead and this is where digital media tools can be a huge help. If your business hasn't launched a website, begun email marketing, or run an online ad, the holiday season could be the perfect time to dip your toes in the water. If you already have started using digital media, take a look at your online presence and try to spruce things up so you're ready for increased traffic.
Not sure where to start? Want a second set of eyes to look over your website or social media profiles? The Pace SBDC's business advisors are ready and equipped to help you maximize the power of digital media and we encourage you to reach out and make a no-cost appointment with a business advisor.
3. Offer Discounts While Maintaining Profit
There is nothing customers love more than a good deal! Whether it's five, ten, or fifty percent off, the holiday season is the perfect time to cut your prices in hopes of increasing the quantity of orders. You should especially consider discounting items that are overstocked or perishable. Choose a deal that you're comfortable with and be sure to conduct a financial analysis such that your business still turns a healthy profit even during your sale. If you need help understanding your profit margins or otherwise looking at your bottom line, contact a Pace SBDC business advisor for no-cost, personalized advice.
4. Set a Limit
Studies show that urgency is a key part of a good marketing campaign, and small businesses can encourage their customers to buy by highlighting the fact that quantities are limited, deals will end, and customers must act fast. Try to incorporate a countdown or limited quantity into your holiday marketing, as this can push customers to stop weighing options and make their purchase decision. A common limit to set is the last day orders can be placed for fulfillment by Christmas, Hanukah, or New Years.
5. Evaluate and Plan for Next Year
When the last shipment goes out and the sales funnel slows down, it may feel like your marketing campaign has ended. That could not be further from the truth because a key final step in marketing is evaluating the success or failure of your campaign. Don't wait to do this! While it's fresh in your mind in January, highlight the wins and fails of your marketing efforts and put together a list of dos and don'ts for next year's campaign.
Looking for No-Cost Assistance from Experts?
The Pace SBDC provides no-cost, one-on-one business counseling to entrepreneurs in New York City. Our advisors guide businesses looking to make the most of their marketing, use digital media as a tool for driving sales, get the financing they need to scale up and meet demand, plan for long term business success, understand bookkeeping best practices and how to create financial statements, and more! Contact us to schedule a no-cost, one-to-one business counseling session.