With the holiday season just around the corner, retailers can expect a boom in foot traffic and sales. At the same time, competition will get stiffer because everyone in the market does their best to pull the crowds. The retail forecasts are promising this year, with projections showing a massive sales estimate of $969 billion. The number reflects a 4.3% year-over-year (YoY) growth.
Besides maximizing your sales, this is the time to create memorable experiences that will make buyers return again. Not surprisingly, retailers are ready to go above and beyond with holiday season marketing spending. They also want to give their best in 2023 because the strong Black Friday sales indicate a lucrative season ahead.
Besides advertising in print and the internet, in-store events are integral to festive promotions. They set the stage for growth in foot traffic, customer engagement, and brand loyalty. However, you need to think beyond just displaying a banner in the corner of your store and create an excellent experience for holiday shoppers.
We have a few actionable tips to plan an impressive retail in-store holiday event that resonates with the customers.
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Begin with the Ambiance
Studies show that the first impressions count the most regarding customer impact. What do shoppers expect when entering your retail store during the holiday season? That’s where a welcoming ambiance replicating the festive spirit comes in. Transform your retail space with a holiday ambiance. You can incorporate a festive theme that resonates with your brand and products.
Themed displays, twinkling lights, and seasonal decorations create a great first impression. Enhance the festive ambiance with holiday music. Give extra attention to the décor of the event area, but remember not to clutter the space. Creating a seamless shopping experience is about making your store easy to navigate and products accessible. That’s even more crucial when buyers are in a hurry.
Invest in Interactive Customer Engagement
According to Gallup, successfully engaged buyers represent a 23% premium in share of wallet, revenue, profitability, and business relationship growth compared to average ones. Once your customers step in, engaging them is the key to winning the retail event game. Think of ideas aligning with the holiday spirit. A holiday-themed contest or raffle and DIY crafting stations can go a long way in generating excitement.
You can order custom stamps to mark your marketing assets or merchandise. Alternatively, refill your favorite stamp so it doesn’t fall short of ink while marking a visitor’s t-shirt, coffee mug, or other giveaways. Branded stamps give buyers something to take home, fostering a strong connection with your store.
Rubber Stamp Champ notes that stamped gifts are great for Christmas as they create lasting memories. You can use them as an engagement tool, allowing customers to get festive stamps on gifts for their loved ones.
Deliver Personalized Customer Experience
A 2021 survey by McKinsey found that personalization can increase revenues by 10-15%. Retail customers expect a tailored experience every time they step in, but expectations peak during the holidays.
You can incorporate personalized touches throughout the event to elevate the shopper experience. Start by providing complimentary gift-wrapping services. Add a special touch with custom wrapping paper, festive ribbons, and branded stamping.
Train your staff to provide personalized recommendations according to individual preferences. It is a great time to run a loyalty program or offer special gifts to buyers. Consider them small investments to foster long-term relationships. Set up games for kids and adults to make them stay around for longer because it increases the chances of sales.
Ensure Seamless Omnichannel Integration
Statistics predict that 20.8% of retail shopping this year will happen online. Even people stepping into retail locations may prefer just looking around and ordering online because it is far more convenient. No one wants to wait in queues and carry stuff when they can pay in a second and get doorstep delivery. Ensure that your in-store event appears on the online selling channels to create an omnichannel experience.
Also, request the in-store buyers to spread the word about their experiences on social media. Event-specific hashtags or geotags can extend the reach of their posts. Provide QR codes leading to exclusive promotions and content. This integration allows customers to continue their buying journey beyond the physical store. It also ensures a cohesive brand experience.
Additionally, in-store retail events can significantly elevate holiday sales and boost customer experiences. They also give you a competitive advantage. However, you must think outside the box to make them impressive and memorable. These tips can set up your retail event for success and leave a lasting impression on customers.