Americans will spend about $682 billion dollars this holiday season, according to the National Retail Federation.
In order to compete with the online giants independent retailers must pull out all the stops to provide the retail experience that online shopping lacks.
Here are some tried and tested strategies that Pointy retailers use over the holidays to get new customers in the door and keep the old ones coming back:
1. Create Instagrammable Holiday Displays
The holidays are a great time to create memorable displays. These displays are an opportunity to showcase your products and get your name out there on social media.
The Toy Jungle at Donlon Pharmacy, host a six-foot-tall K’Nex Ferris wheel that is worthy of any Instagram or Facebook post. They will also be hosting an Out of the Box Open House Event, where they unbox popular toys and stream it to their Facebook Page.
2. Know Your Customer & Build A Holiday Experience Tailored To Them
You have to know and understand your customer so that you can help build a holiday experience tailored to them.
Standard 5 & 10 and Stan’s Kitchen has customers coming in year after year for their large selection of Hallmark and boxed cards. For the customers shopping for Hanukkah, they stock money holders which serve as great Gelt holders. If you know who your customer is and what they want, you can tailor your products and experience to them.
3. Use The Opportunity To Educate Your Customer
Keep an eye out for teachable moments. Customers are coming in for expertise that they can’t get from online shopping. Nothing beats a good recommendation or a short conversation with someone who is really knowledgeable about a product.
Flax Art & Design hosts events where they do live demos of their products being used as well as fun socializing events like their Pen Faire & Sale where people can sip champagne, shop and even listen to live guitar music.
Standard 5 & 10 and Stan’s Kitchen sends out a holiday edition of their newsletter where they educate their customers on the long-term benefits of investing in LED holiday lights.
4. Get Your Products Online
During the festive season, customers will be using search engines like Google to find the perfect gifts for their loved ones. Stores across the US like Standard 5 & 10 and Stan’s Kitchen, The Toy Jungle at Donlon Pharmacy, The Curiosity Shop, and Flax Art & Design are using Pointy to get their products online and drive more customers to their store.
The Pointy device plugs into a store’s barcode scanner and automatically brings all their products online. This gets them found by customers who are searching for products they stock.
5. Get Involved In Your Community
One major advantage that small retailers have is that they can engage with and get involved in their local community to help them build meaningful relationships with their customers.
Check in with local community members to see what types of events are going on for small business and try to make your store a part of them. Flax Art & Design participate in Plaid Friday, independent retailer’s alternative to Black Friday. They also participate in pop-ups across the city and host tons of DIY events. They bring in all types of experts who do demonstrations of how to use the many products they stock.
6. Create Holiday Traditions
Customers are coming into your store for the experience. Creating fun promotions, advent calendars, games or traditions will have a lasting impression on shoppers and keep them coming back!
The Curiosity Shop has the tradition of hiding an ornament upside down on their Christmas tree every day, the person who finds it gets 10-20% their purchase that day.
The Toy Jungle at Donlon Pharmacy participates in their local holiday parade where they throw out wooden coins that are redeemable for a candy or small toy in the store.
7. Know What Products Are Trending
Every holiday season, new hot products end up being must-haves for customers. Stores need to make sure they know what trends are happening and stay ahead of them if they’re to satisfy their customers’ demands. Tools like Google Trends can help you spot these hot products.
Standard 5 & 10 and Stan’s Kitchen noticed that people were asking about pickle ornaments. After doing a little bit of research they discovered that the tradition dates back to Germany where the pickle ornament is hidden in the tree and the person who finds it is said to have a year of good fortune.
Want to make your store stand out this holiday season?
Pointy can help your stand out by automatically getting all your products online. It’s an affordable and easy way to attract more holiday shoppers.