Friday, November 26, 2010

Mini EB Friday Hotlist: Three Quick Tips for Getting Sales During the Online Holiday Shopping Season

Photo by the justified sinner on Flickr
Used under Creative Commons license
Online shopping tends to pick up this time of year as people start buying gifts for loved ones, friends, coworkers, teachers, secret santas, holiday parties, and more.  From Black Friday (today) and Cyber Monday through the day-after-Christmas sales, our consumer culture tends to kick into overdrive - even during a recession.  If you're working on growing your business, it would be a mistake not to capitalize on this.  Here are some quick tips for maximizing your business this holiday season:

Tip #1 Make sure you utilize your social media tools effectively.  If you're on Twitter, tweet an item a day and tag it with #handmade, #shophandmadethisholiday, #cybermonday, #(etsy, artfire, zibbet, etc.),
#(product type), etc.  Make sure you send out an email to your mailing list and/or a Facebook post to your fans letting them know about any holiday-specific sales or great gift items you have.  One fun idea is to do a 12 Days of Christmas sale with a new item on sale each day, announced that day.  It generates buzz and keeps people coming back to your social media sites...for at least 2 weeks anyway.  It's important though to remember to keep promoting on social media even if you're not having a big sale.  See Tip #3 for more information on that.

Tip #2 Check out what your selling venue provides.  Every year the major selling venues have item tags and special twitter hashtags to use to promote the Black Friday/Cyber Monday sales.  There's much more available though every year, so do your research.  Did you know that Etsy now has % off coupon codes and Timothy Adam now has a site where you can promote them?  Or that Zibbet has gift guides to which premium sellers can add their own items?  (Yes, they are now live.)  Or that you can now put all of your items on sale at once in your Etsy shop via a third party site?  Do a little research on the newest features of your venue so that you can maximize your use of them this shopping season.

Wabi Sabi Gift Wrap
Photo by SSSasky on Flickr
Used under Creative Commons license
Tip #3 Offer perks for shopping with you.  Maybe you can't afford to slash prices 40% and offer free shipping just to get a few sales.  Supplies cost more than ever and, let's face it, shipping isn't free.  If you're not doing a sale, that doesn't mean you slack off on promoting until all of the % off, free shipping, BOGO frenzies are over.  Be proactive by focusing on what you can offer instead.  Maybe you're willing to ship directly to a gift recipient, making it easier for someone to buy a last minute gift.  Maybe you can provide free/low-cost gift wrapping, fancy and festive packaging, a free handmade gift tag, or options for expedited shipping at the customer's extra expense.  Get creative.  Everyone has something to offer.

I hope these three tips will help you as you take on your holiday selling adventure.  Best wishes for many, many sales!

Happy holidays!!