It’s official. The holidays are here. Buckle up because this year is going to be one for the books. We might not quite know if it will be great, be a disaster, or somewhere in between, but there are a few things we’ve learned from the last few months that can be taken into these next few weeks to guarantee success. I recently joined Rakuten where we shared “October learnings to turn into Q4 wins”, and since I figured we could all use more “wins” in our life…here it goes: Retailer Tips for a Successful Holiday Season:
  1. Let consumers shop the way they want to shop. Consumers are exhausted. Every little thing in life, such as going to the grocery store, or going into the office has become a calculated decision and requires much more effort than in a pre-Covid world. As a retailer, consumers want easy and stress-free holiday shopping, so let’s meet them where they are. Retailers must make shopping, browsing and purchasing easy by: offering sitewide or channel specific promotions, providing relevant added value such as gift wrap or curbside pickup, and most importantly, deliver on a checkout process that is seamless and easy.
  2. Value is key. Historically Black Friday & Cyber Monday take the cake on having the best valued sales but 2020 brings a new definition to value. Now, not only are consumers interested in how far their dollar will go, but consumers want to know what the personal value is of purchasing from that specific brand. Consumers are looking for brands that give them what is missing from their day to day lives – safety, predictability and purpose. Retailers must communicate to consumers with clarity, candor, enthusiasm, and hope that transcends far beyond a physical product.
  3. Start Now. This year more than ever, brands are starting holiday sales earlier and shoppers are also starting their holiday shopping earlier. 1 in every 4 Americans has already purchased their Christmas gifts. (USA Today, 2020) Which means, 1. The demand is there. 2. If you aren’t starting to message your sales, but your competitors are, then you’re missing out on potential revenue that could’ve been yours. Hop to it!
  4. Capitalize on large tent pole shopping events. Leverage the big shopping days to not only create offers but also to highlight your value proposition against your competitors. Many people will pay attention on key shopping days and start to build a consideration set. Even if you are not selling on the big days – it’s one of the greatest branding opportunities of the year.
Wishing everyone a successful and hopeful holiday season. 2021, we are sure ready for you!

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