The importance of the holiday sales for many brands can’t be overstated. It’s often the thing that makes or breaks the year. So what are smart marketers looking to do improve over last year’s lukewarm holiday sales numbers?
Take a look at what the data says about how consumers behave, because this period of the year is often unlike any other. Then, respond accordingly. Here’s a guide:
Optimize for mobile.
Mobile sales accounted for one out of five purchases on Black Friday and Cyber Monday last year, and that’s expected to climb. A cross device view is key to effective campaigns.
Don’t let the season fool you.
Holidays drive sales, so how do you tell an incremental boost in sales from the natural rise at certain times of the year? “Often, media that touches consumers lower in the conversion funnel, but do not add incremental new sales, are often hugely over-credited, and media spending decisions are biased as a result. By understanding what combinations of tactics truly drive incremental sales over and above the natural increase in sales during these critical shopping days, marketers can greatly improve their decision-making.”
Test. Test. Test.
Black Friday and Cyber Monday means competing for consumer attention. Play with the edges of the sales period and see how messaging does before and after. “By applying advanced measurement techniques, marketers can not only identify which creative and messaging variants will have the greatest impact, but can also get an accurate picture of the time lag at which certain marketing tactics produce conversions. During the “noisy” holiday shopping season, this analysis is critical for understanding when to communicate with a consumer so that the message is heard.”
Create a store to online pipeline.
Even with digital blurring the line between the two biggest shopping days, consumers are still out looking for deals in store on Black Friday. So how do you push them to buy more online on Cyber Monday? Last year, “brick and click” stores were most successful, outselling online only competitors three to one. Measuring consumer behavior carefully is key.
The bottom line: Even though last year’s holiday sales were down, Black Friday and Cyber Monday shattered records when it comes to online sales. This year, digital will be important but using every advantage to maximize sales is critical.