Below are some tips to share with our local businesses before the holiday season begins. These tips come from Scott Taddiken at the Washburn Small Business Development Center in Kansas.
- Don’t overlook any potential markets. Gifts are huge, but decorations, candy and food, flowers (poinsettias and others), greeting cards and postage, etc. are also big. These categories make up to 25% of Christmas spending!
- Black Friday is big, but it isn’t everything. Traffic is extremely high on the day following Thanksgiving and some say up to 25% of shoppers will start at 5 a.m. However, Black Friday isn’t always the biggest spending day – for brick and mortar businesses, the last two weekends prior to Christmas may be the biggest.Many people are looking for good deals and a place to have fun. Black Friday is something fun to do with family and friends. While many people get out to shop on Black Friday, stores must have a plan to bring them back in to buy.
- People are shopping online. Online purchases tend to increase as the season progresses (people have checked out store specials and done comparison shopping).Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday are often good online – people shop in stores over the weekend and then shop online at the beginning of the week. This means that retailers must close the sale on the weekend while shoppers are in their stores.
- Spending the week after Christmas and into January continues to increase! Find a way to bring these shoppers back into your stores. Hand out “good for ___% off your next purchase” coupons to holiday shoppers. Offer surprises with future purchases and make sure to promote your after Christmas and January sales.
- When they are buying from you, be sure to “Bundle ‘em up”! Create gift packages (corporate gifts, related products, etc.). Remember people are four times more likely to buy something they can touch, so have items available. Ask your vendors for displays or use displays that suggest a product’s use or someone else’s enjoyment in receiving a product.
- Gift Cards. Did you know that 56% of people spend more than is on the card? So make sure all shoppers know you offer gift cards as a great gift idea. Another benefit of gift cards is that they expose new people to your business – great advertising! And remember, some gift cards never get used.
Above all be positive, cheery and enjoy the season – Your customers will notice!
Local Residents – Remember to BUY LOCAL!