Many online shoppers start their holiday shopping before Thanksgiving. The holiday season is the best time for online businesses to sell their products and increase sales.
According to MasterCard, online holiday sales increased by 10.6% last year, while in-store sales grew by 6.8%. Moreover, the average U.S. consumer in 2023 plans to spend approximately $1,530 during the peak holiday season.
Online businesses shouldn’t miss these financial opportunities and build a good holiday marketing strategy to increase sales. However, it takes some creativity, time, and strategic planning.
In this article, you will find ten practical strategies for businesses to prepare for this holiday season and maximize their revenue.
Update Your Product Information
Google’s Merchant Center is an excellent place for online businesses that helps you promote and sell products this holiday season.
Before showing them up in your Merchant feed, do your best to provide up-to-date product details along with high-quality images, special offers, and fulfillment options.
Here are some tips you should consider:
- Make sure that your product titles and descriptions are compelling and valuable. Add core attributes such as product type, size, brand, color, share, price, etc. Use Google Trends to see the most trending product titles.
- Include multiple high-quality images. Providing at least three high-resolution images for each product can receive 32% more clicks and a staggering 76% increase in impressions.
- Show shoppers the checkout feature to complete their purchases without any unnecessary friction. Send them directly from the product listing to your checkout page, resulting in a more streamlined and efficient shopping experience for your customers.
- Use percent-off badges or promotional information like coupon codes or expiration dates for customers. These enhancements will catch shoppers’ eyes and boost visibility, leading to more clicks and sales.
- Boost your product discovery by adding reviews and ratings on Google. Upload a product ratings feed in the Merchant Center or integrate with Google customer reviews.
Build Seasonal Landing Pages
Most business owners must focus more on creating unique landing pages featuring promotions during the holiday season.
It can be even more effective to add a holiday theme to your landing pages and offer something special for this season that can help to attract and engage your target audience.
Creating a landing page for each of your products or services can be a great way to provide your customers with a clear and concise overview of your special offers.
Presenting all the details and a single call to action on one page increases the likelihood of holiday conversion rates going up.
Consider using a cost-effective, feature-rich landing page builder for creating high-converting sales pages.
Here are some tips you can follow:
- Design a page with a well-thought-out structure leading to a great user experience;
- Avoid too much text, use white space, and give only the most essential details about your offer.
- Optimize your landing pages for mobile and make it easy for shoppers to buy online from their smartphones;
- Add a clear call to action to make an online purchase in a few steps;
- Use discount coupons and countdown times to increase sales on your page.
- Make it easy for shoppers to navigate and quickly find everything they need to see.
Create Holiday-Themed Content
Whether you provide content on your page or social media, an AI writer can be a valuable tool to create holiday-themed content to help your business stand out.
Think about what value your products or services can bring to people during this holiday season, highlight their benefits, and show how they work to make their holidays enjoyable.
For example, people always need ideas about what gifts to buy for their children or friends. You can create unique gift guides to help them find the best gift, attract more customers, and improve your SEO efforts.
Consider what keyword phrases people enter in search to find these gift guides, like “wooden Christmas presents for kids” or “unique best friends gifts.”
You can also create holiday recipes and share them on social media, mainly if you sell something connected with food products or cook’s essentials.
Ask your followers to participate in holiday-themed challenges and share their stories or tips. You can also ask questions or make story polls to engage your followers more.
Provide Attractive Deals
Offering attractive deals during the holiday season is a must for any online business to increase sales. Whether it is bundle offers or personalized gift cards, do your best to attract as many as possible customers to purchase your products or services.
Fortunately, there are a bunch of great ways to do it. You can offer something free if, for example, customers buy some things, free shipping, or give free gift cards.
Combo offers, limited-timed or “buy one get one free” offers work great for customers because they love to get things for free.
Another effective holiday season strategy is offering referral discounts on particular products, exclusive deals, loyalty programs, or coupon codes among current clients.
Giving a small bonus to your existing customers can help promote your business without charge through word-of-mouth spreads about the cheapest deals. Investing in returning customers adds value to your online business and drives sales.
You can also create different gift bundles related to your products or services. For example, if you are a yoga studio, you can offer fitness yoga classes and yoga mats in a bundle to encourage customers to purchase during the holiday season.
Create a holiday category on your website to promote your services or products. Consider creating a holiday poster to add a personalized touch to your promotions.
Improve Your Website for Holiday Traffic
Holiday shopping can bring in a surge of traffic to your website. Ensuring that your website is fully equipped to handle the increased demand is essential to make the most of this season. It’s vital to have your website ready for the uptick in web traffic during this period.
Here are some tips to prepare your website for this holiday rush:
- Make sure your website loads quickly. Check your site speed with Google’s Page Speed Tool.
- Maintain scalability and stability for your website. To handle the load, check and update your third-party integrations and provider’s current stats.
- Optimize your site for mobile, and ensure that your site has a responsive site design.
- Ensure you are stocked enough to avoid long wait times for customers to get gifts.
- Simplify the checkout process and enable cookies for returning customers.
- Offer different payment options and the BNPL feature to make customers’ shopping convenient.
- Maintain a consistent website layout and avoid making significant updates.
Using the most essential SEO techniques can help you generate targeted traffic to your website. By targeting relevant queries for your audience, you can reach visitors most likely to purchase your products.
Focus on using product-oriented keywords to optimize your website for search engines. For example, “Christmas gifts for girls” or “holiday dresses for women.” Update your holiday listings for service-oriented or local businesses to improve local SEO.
Promote Your Holiday Deals on Social Media
Your website isn’t the only place to promote your holiday deals. Social commerce is a great channel to spread the word and highlight your holiday promotions for this time of year. Prepare and update your products and tag items you plan to sell on Instagram and Facebook.
Use product tags and hashtags through different formats such as stories, reels, IGTV, captions, and Live to increase your visibility and engagement on Instagram. You can create shoppable posts by posting your store’s holiday deals to attract new online shoppers and boost sales.
Online merchants can take advantage of Facebook and promote their deals and discounts. You can reach out to your audience through Facebook Stories, Facebook Groups, your Business page, Facebook Marketplace, Messenger, and Facebook Ads.
Creating and promoting videos with a holiday theme on Facebook or Instagram can be increasingly popular. As a video maker, you can elevate your content by incorporating captivating visuals and festive elements.
Whether humorous, heartwarming, or sincere, it’s essential to produce something that connects with your viewers and embodies the essence of the holiday season.
Send Out Your Promotional Emails
To ensure the success of holiday campaigns, sending promotional emails on time is crucial. If your business has specific holiday sales or special offers, avoid waiting until the last minute to send promotional emails.
This way, your customers will have ample time to take advantage of your promotions before they expire. Use email marketing tools to capture your customers’ attention early on and share information about upcoming holiday promotions.
That will help you generate interest and excitement, leading to increased conversions when the time comes.
To maximize the success of your holiday email campaigns, it’s essential to verify your emails, segment, and personalize them.
Grouping your customers based on gender, geographic location, and acquisition stage enables you to create targeted and relevant campaigns. Write catchy and concise subject lines and pre-header texts to stand out from other emails.
Maintain Excellent Customer Service
As the holiday season approaches, ensure your business is fully equipped to provide customers with the excellent support they need. Hiring seasonal employees ensures you have enough help to manage an increase in phone, email, social media, or chat requests.
Ensure these employees have enough communication and management skills or have taken some resilience training courses to prepare for the holiday rush.
Providing customers with fast and efficient service is essential to keep them satisfied and returning to your business. Here are some proactive steps to provide adequate support during the holiday season:
- Build an FAQ page with quick and easy answers to common questions that can help you lighten the load on your customer service team.
- Have clear shipping and return policies to keep customers informed. Taking care of the return shipping cost can be a great way to incentivize customers to purchase and increase the likelihood that they’ll return to your site. Consider showcasing “same-day delivery” if you offer this service.
- Ensure that warehouse supplies are kept updated in the system in the event of a high response to seasonal sales.
- Integrate chatbots or live chat support to optimize customer support and help shoppers find the right products.
- Encourage customer loyalty and generate positive reviews by incentivizing customers with a one-time discount or free shipping for leaving a review on your website or social media channels.
Get The Best Out of Performance Max Campaign
Google’s Performance Max campaigns are the ultimate solution for automating ad optimization across all Google Ads channels, including Search, YouTube, Shopping, Display, Discover, and Google Maps.
If you have a Merchant Center feed, all the information you provide, like product images, pricing, and other essential details, will be used to create attractive ads to engage more customers during their holiday shopping.
However, to further increase the relevance of these ads, you should supplement your feed with additional text, images, and video assets to unleash Google AI’s full potential and serve even more relevant ads to shoppers across channels.
Starting a Performance Max campaign is a breeze; you can initiate it directly from the Merchant Center.
Additionally, using an e-commerce platform like Shopify or WooCommerce, you can seamlessly synchronize your products and launch Performance Max campaigns directly from your platform.
Monitor Your Results
To ensure your holiday marketing campaign’s effectiveness, measuring their results and better understanding what worked and what didn’t is essential. That way will help you refine your marketing strategy and generate even more sales during the next holiday season.
Set clear goals for each campaign and determine how you will measure its success before launching it. You can monitor all traffic sources in Google Analytics and create dedicated reports to track the progress of specific campaigns and make data-driven decisions.
Using the Performance Tab in the Merchant Center (Classic, Next), you can evaluate your top-selling products and brands, learn more about your competitors, see the best prices, and find new ideas to improve your holiday campaign.
You can also get recommendations and actionable tips for improving products to increase sales.
During the holiday season, people generally experience feelings of happiness and celebration. Businesses can use this by implementing relevant promotional and sales strategies, resulting in higher returns.
Fortunately, there are various holiday marketing strategies available. However, no matter what you choose, preparing, planning, testing, and tracking everything from spending to sales profit to return rate is essential.
A well-executed holiday marketing plan can help to retain customers even after the holidays.