Image by: Tambako the Jaguar
By: George Lamb
The holidays are here and you know what that means, right? Yea, if you’re the proud owner of an online business you will probably be among the other entrepreneurs who prioritize sales numbers over family matters. The fact is, for business owners, the holidays can prove to be among the busiest times of the year. You’ve got Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Christmas to plan for, and want to make sure your services, product, and staff are in tip top shape so your business doesn’t flop and allow the competition to steal your benefits.
A stressful time indeed, but with the increased traffic you are destined to accumulate comes an increased revenue as well. Customers are likely saving their money year round for these specialized occasions, and if you take the time and energy to use this fact to your businesses advantage, you my be able to lure in more cash than you’ve ever beheld.
First things first, though, lets discuss 4 ways to make sure your business gets the most of the holidays.
#1) Stay in Contact
The best part of the holidays, without a doubt is the increased traffic your company is destined to receive. More traffic equates to more money for your business, but to ensure that your holiday success wasn’t just a fluke, it is your duty to make your best effort to ensure that the success of your company spills over into the new year with a similar fervor that it displayed during the more hectic times of year. In order to make sure this pipe-dream becomes a reality, staying in contact with the holiday visitors is essential to keeping any new customers that just happened to browse by.
While I wouldn’t suggest spamming every person who signs up for your email list, I would suggest you take the time and effort to ensure that those lucky customers who just happened to divulge their information is aware of the advancements, discounts, and other news that is related to your product. And the cool thing with this is, to accumulate more people on their newsletters, businesses sometimes even have apps developed that incorporate a text-to-join feature that can make consistent contact with the masses that much more convenient.
#2) Make it Easy for People to Find You
With the influx of online businesses in the last decade, distinguishing yourself from the crowd can prove to be quite a difficult task. Just imagine: literally millions upon millions of hungry businesses all trying desperately to attract attention to their brand. Yea, unless you make it rather simple for new customers to find you, then you may find yourself lost in the sea of other businesses which are making the same mistake.
While word of mouth is probably the biggest customer driver, social media is among one of the best tools to exposing what your business is, how your product will help them, and perhaps most important of all who the person in the shadows is who made the product. With the avid use of tablets, smartphones and laptops, your presence online–and not just on your businesses site, but also your blog and your social media accounts–will most likely dictate the amount of traffic you accrue during the holidays.
To make sure you’re doing this right, simply conduct your own search from an objective computer and see what shows up. If you accentuate your product with hashtags and bold key words, you will likely have a better shot at popping up on the first pages on Google. Also, before the holidays (i.e. Black Friday and Christmas) hits, it is important to make sure all the information regarding your business is accurate and up to date.
#3) Be Prepared For Annual Shopping Days
Ever watch that episode of South Park when the crowd of customers outside the mall started a riot upon the doors opening for Black Friday? Yea, the bloodshed in that scene was no exaggeration, and if you’re smart enough to use the latter point suggested in this article, then the flow of traffic you will receive from these brutish customers will be your job to manage.
Black Friday (Nov. 28), Small Business Saturday (Nov. 29th), and Cyber Monday (December 1st) are some of the biggest shopping days of the year. Consumers spend literally billions of dollars per date, and the way you go about handling these specific dates can often determine if the future of your business will be successful, or just run-of-the-mill. So if you want to take part in that financial action, I’d suggest you pick a day, map out a promotional plan and start getting the word out early of your amazing deals. Which brings me to my final point:
#4) Holiday Offers
If you were to ask any customer what their number one goal is when shopping for the holidays, I can imagine 9 times out of 10 they’d express their desires to save as much money as possible. Anything in this context will suffice for them, whether it be coupons, discounts, or free trials–anything to argue the fact that they are making a good financial decision when shopping for your company.
This especially applies for Black Friday and days alike, as these are the days where customers most expect to see prices at an all time low.
Whatever route you decide to take in terms of how you advertise your once in a life time offer, remember that keeping a little leverage with your product is always necessary–even on days like Black Friday. If you give your product away too cheap and pose–literally–unbelievable deals, some customers might be under the impression that you aren’t legit, or may have a product that is of low quality.
Instead, do your research on how other companies are pricing similar items, and use information you gather to emulate the recipe to drawing customers, but instead of blatantly copying other deals, perhaps ad your own unique touch that distinguishes you from the competitors.
How are preparing for the busiest shopping time of the year? Any secrets you care to share with the rest of us? Please comment below!