Here in Northeastern Pennsylvania, it is finally starting to feel like autumn. Do the falling leaves and sweater weather have you thinking about the holidays? If not, it is certainly time for small business owners to start preparing for the upcoming holiday season. Since this can be a stressful time of year, the University of Scranton Small Business Development Center has crafted a guide to provide you with all the information you need, so you can go into the busiest time of year worry-free!
What the pandemic taught us that is here to say-
With the pandemic giving people perspective on what is a priority to them and teaching them new ways to shop, customers know exactly what they want and how they want it. That is why it is crucial to offer the shopping experience consumers are looking for, because if they don’t find it with you, they will go elsewhere.
- Number of sales were down, but the transaction size was up!
If a consumer is happy with their purchase experience, we are finding that they now want to simplify their holiday shopping and purchase more things in one go. Account for this by offering deals that speak to this type of purchase behavior like, “buy one, get one” or “10% on $150+ purchases”. This also tells us that offering more options is better! Get creative and give customers ideas. Maybe have a display of product offerings with signs reading, “perfect gifts for teachers” or “best his gifts/hers gifts”. This will remind customers of who they are shopping for and provide them with suggestions by guiding them with great gifting ideas.
- Allow customers to shop with ease!
Customers now love to shop from the comfort of their own homes. As marketing experts at the Scranton SBDC, we are finding that the customer journey is shifting from being a linear funnel to hitting consumers at multiple touch points. What does that mean? It means that rather than consumers going in-store, browsing, debating whether to purchase, and then returning to the store to buy, customers now browse a store’s inventory on their website to get an idea of what they want to purchase before even stepping foot in the store. This means it is important for you to be updating your online store/website/social media pages as often as possible. Additionally, think about offering consumers the purchase options they have come to love like curbside pickup.
To receive even more best practices and tips on service, product offerings, and promotions relating to the 2022 holiday season, click here for our 2022 downloadable Holiday Guide!