There's no doubt about it: we're rapidly approaching summertime. People are headed to the beach, grilling up hot dogs outside... and ready to shop around for good deals! But it's also a traditionally slow retail time, so you have to catch them where they are. The last thing you want to happen is to be excluded from the summertime sales madness. While you may have missed out on several months of preparation, you can still turn it around with a few simple ideas.
Setting up your shop for summer is a lot like getting it ready for the holidays. You have a small window for success and you're fighting off everyone else on the Internet as each store owner wants a piece of the action. Also, you should take advantage of the season to further sales, just like the winter holiday!
For a more detailed explanation, read on.
Fun in the Sun
No matter how old you get, thinking of summertime conjures up visions of vacations, road trips, and relaxing on the beach! Even if you're stuck at work for most of the summer and have never been to the beach, the imagery is stuck in most peoples' heads that summer is just one solid blast of a time.
It's just like the winter holidays – everywhere we go we're reminded that Christmas, Hanukkah, and other winter celebrations are a time for family, friends, and fun. Again, it doesn't matter what kind of holidays you're used to, the overall "vibe" of the season is one of "get together ...and bring presents!"
So your online store should be taking advantage of the summer season by tapping into those feelings of "fun in the sun". If you can make your online customers feel like they just walked into a sunglass hut in Miami shaking beach sand out of their flip-flops, you've got it made in the shade!
Now that doesn't necessarily mean just throwing up random pictures of summertime images like the sun and killer waves. Often during the weeks up until Christmas many ecommerce shops simply put up little Christmas tree lights or falling snowflakes (complete with jingle bell sounds) and call it a day.
What's really important is the "feel" of your online store. Again you want to replicate that feeling of walking into a little seaside store, completely relaxed and ready to have fun at any point. When your customers click on your link, they should experience the same feeling of relaxation.
This could be from anything to a redesign of your website to simply revamping your customer service. After all, what's friendlier than being greeted by a local shopkeeper and hearing all the great discounts and deals they'll offer "just for you!"
Or think of that souvenir you picked up in New Orleans – after all the poking around you did, your eyes settled on the perfect trinket to represent your time in the city. You felt like it was there just for you, right? Your customers like to feel that same sense of satisfaction, so make them feel like the items in your store are there just for them and no one else. You may even consider literally doing this with some of your big buyers - create a special page and email the link to your regular customers to give them first dibs on the unique merchandise!
Another idea is product bundling – think of items in your store that go together, and represent summer. A shovel and a pail for sandcastle building, is a great example, but you could also do a beach kit with a tote bag, flip flops, beach towels and your choice of bathing suit. Or even throw in a freebie with a summer feel for each customer who purchases something from your store during the days school is out.
As with any season, there are plenty of ways to capitalize on your customers' moods and psychology during the hot season. Think up one or two that would work for your products and give it a whirl!