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5 Christmas promo ideas for ecommerce businesses

By Jess O'Connor / On Nov 29 2018

The shops are playing Christmas carols, tinsel is everywhere, and mall parking lots resemble rush-hour traffic jams. Hello, December!

December may mean chaos at the mall, but it’s a dream marketing opportunity for ecommerce businesses. The holiday season is an ideal time to show customers how easy and stress-free online shopping can be.

If you can deliver exceptional value and service during this stressful season, you’ll create some customers for life.

Here are five Christmas promo ideas to help you boost sales and wow your customers.

1. Gift guides

Everyone is time-poor at this time of year. They want quick solutions for their shopping challenges, such as what to buy Aunt Shirley and stocking fillers for the kids.

Put together a gift guide showcasing some of your best products by categories such as: For Him, For Her, For the Kids, For Secret Santa, For Work, etc. Share this on your website, in your newsletter, and on your social media channels.

If you don’t have time to put together an in-depth gift guide, consider making suggestions on social media, instead. Post a different gift on social media each day with a blurb about who it’s ideal for and why.

2. Christmas discount code

Offer a Christmas discount code for ‘VIP’ customers, e.g. your email subscribers or Instagram followers.

Other discount ideas include bundle deals (e.g. buy one get one free) or offering a discount for whoever spends over a set amount (e.g. Save 10% if you spend over $150).

Spend some time calculating what kind of discount will be the most lucrative and the most appealing to your customers.

3. Free or reduced shipping

If it’s profitable, offer free or reduced shipping throughout the month of December.

Shipping costs are a huge barrier to purchase for many shoppers. Free or reduced shipping might be enough to attract fence-sitting customers who were considering braving the mall instead.

4. Social media advertising

People are actively looking for gifts at this time of year, which means they’re probably paying more attention to social media advertising.

Now is a great time to promote your hero products (especially if you can offer a Christmas discount) to your target audience on social media.

That said, a lot of other businesses will be running similar promos, so try to make your ad stand out from the rest. Use eye-catching images, clever copy, and make the deal too good to resist.

5. 12 days of Christmas promo

If you have a large product catalogue and several great discounts to promote, a 12 days of Christmas promo could work brilliantly.

Every day for 12 days, you will unveil a new discounted item on social media or to your email subscribers.

Start off with small products or discounts (e.g. stocking fillers) and slowly build up to bigger, better deals. Create a buzz and build anticipation and excitement. You want customers to be hanging out for each deal and to buy multiple products.

If you don’t have the capacity to discount products, you could run a 12 days of Christmas giveaway instead. Each day, you announce a big prize. If someone makes an order on that day, they go into the draw to win that prize. You could even run this giveaway in conjunction with another company.

Other Christmas ecommerce tips

Here are some other tips to keep in mind over the holiday shopping season.

  • Make sure your shipping details and timeframes are clear. Tell your customers the cut-off date to receive orders by Christmas Eve.
     
  • Send out email reminders and social media updates in the days leading up to the Christmas Eve cut-off date (so people don’t miss out).
     
  • Add a free Christmas gift to every purchase. For example, a handwritten card, a product sample, or a chocolate Santa.
     
  • Offer gift wrap (paid or free) at checkout if you can, as well as a card writing service.
     
  • Look for ways to turn one-off Christmas shoppers into long-term customers. Give them opportunities to like you on social media and sign up to your newsletter. Add a voucher to their order to encourage them to spend more in the new year.
     
  • Consider hiring extra customer service help to support you during busy times. For example, you might need some extra people processing Live Chat enquiries or replying to comments on social media.

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