Marketing departments tend to be at their most creative in the run up to holidays, particularly Christmas. However, at a time when even last year's pre-Christmas VAT cut had little or no impact on consumer spending, the creative pressure is really on this year to increase sales.
A recent survey predicted that retailers will see more site visitors and more transactions than they have in previous years because prices are falling. This means that competition between retailers is going to be at its peak. To win customers, companies not only have to offer the best money-saving deals, but they have to communicate them in the right way.
For many, Christmas shopping has evolved into a form of research, spending hours online finding gifts for their family and friends at the lowest possible prices. According to Google, this research began in August last year and as a result many major retailers are now preparing their websites for peak trading. So, if retailers haven’t done so already they will soon begin to see visitor numbers rise as shoppers research their Christmas gifts in advance of purchasing them, looking for the best value for money.
Over the last 18 months retailers and restaurants in particular have started to offer regular discount vouchers on products and services, and this has been successful in stimulating consumer activity. However, rather than expecting shoppers to track down these offers, retailers should consider implementing online campaigns which pro-actively target the right people for their offers.
One of the most effective ways to ensure potential shoppers turn into Christmas sales is to put in place attractive money-saving offers that can be downloaded or printed now and then redeemed in the run up to Christmas. New techniques in Online Lead Generation enable companies to target offers to the most appropriate potential customers – making this form of online marketing particularly effective.
Let’s take, for example, anti-ageing cream. This has become one of the most popular presents purchased at Christmas by sons and grandchildren to give to their mothers, aunties and grandmothers. A campaign that gets half-price anti-ageing cream vouchers in front of male internet users between the ages of 15 and 40 in the run up to Christmas not only provides a gift idea, but also provides an opportunity for the purchaser to make a significant saving — without the added hassle of visiting a busy shopping centre.
Shoppers receive information about the offer online and then register to use the discount, which means that they are much more likely to convert into a sale because they are already interested in the product, as well as the savings.
Christmas is one of the few times in the year when families look forward to going shopping together because of the festive atmosphere in shopping centres and department stores. Online marketing campaigns that use all the techniques of profiling and targeting prospective customers, and then give customers the option to print out a discount code for a voucher redeemable in the shops, provide an added bonus. Although vouchers are essentially saving the customers money, getting people through the doors is important to the retailer — their shops are busy and their sales teams have an opportunity to attract customers to make additional purchases.