By: Bailey Holtz
Benefits of Summer Sales & How They Can Help Boost Your Internet Business
Summer is the season of fun—and not just for kids and their families. Businesses, too, can have a blast bringing in additional revenue this season. During the summer consumers have more time on their hands. They are out doing more activities and taking more trips. This means they have loads of time to spend shopping online during the summer! That’s why this is the perfect time to run a sale or promotion. At Pure-Ecommerce we want to introduce you to some amazing tools not only to help you bring in more sales. We also want to raise awareness about your business through promotional content and additional messaging. Let us walk you through the benefits of summer sales. Plus, how to get your very own successful summer sale up and running.
It may surprise you but the summer season when consumers are spending, spending, spending! According to Ezonomics, respondents to an online poll overwhelmingly stated that they spent the most money during the summer time. A whopping 55.2% of respondents declared summer was their big spending season. While others only voted a mere 3.5% for spring.
It’s easy to understand why consumers are spending more money during the summer. People are paying for vacations, beach gear, outdoor activities, new clothes, outdoor living essentials, and the list goes on. According to The Ladders, Americans spend $305 more on socializing during the summer than during any other season. With people spending more money, summer is a great time to make your internet business more visible. You can offer up your own reasons for them to spend their money at your internet business!
The Ever-Popular Sale
In today’s massive and varied buying landscape, promotions, sales, and discounts are more important than ever! They are important to an internet business owner in gaining and retaining customers. We’ve seen many versions of sales and promotions over the years. Whether it’s a humble hand-painted sign, in-home mailer or individual coupons to customized deals that land right in one’s inbox. Of course, the practice of offering sales is not new. However, it still totally works because face it everyone loves to get something on sale!
According to Hub at Johns Hopkins University, consumers are just as motivated by sales and promotions as ever! As part of a Johns Hopkins study, researchers defined two separate sets of consumer behaviors. They are based on the consumers’ differing affinities for sales. They are as follows:
- “Value-conscious”: Consumers who take advantage of sales merely for the benefit of saving money.
- “Deal-prone”: Consumers who make purchases because they derive a psychological benefit from feeling like they got a deal.
It helps to understand this distinction when crafting your promotion. Deal-prone shoppers, for instance, may be more willing to take advantage of a 2 for 1 deal. While the value-conscious shoppers may balk at the idea of paying more. But then they’ll make a purchase when they receive a percentage off the full price. Either way, the conclusion is clear: no matter what, offering discounts and special prices will get the attention of consumers.
Theme, Sale, and Length
Now that we’ve crunched the numbers and shown that summer sales are a worthy investment of your time and energy. Now is the time when you get to put your “business-owner hat” on. You can decide what type of sale will be best for your particular internet business and the goods you offer.
There are many different variables you can tinker with including…
- Product on sale
- Time span of the sale, and
- Discount offered during your sale
The possibilities can seem overwhelming at first. That’s why according to VendHQ, the first step must be to come up with an objective for your sale. Without a defined objective you won’t have enough parameters to run it successfully. You may end up offering all your merchandise at a discounted rate…forever!
For example, maybe you would like to use a sale to drive new customers to your homepage. In that case, a relatively broad sale will fare better. Or if you’re trying to promote an under-selling item, then keep the sale limited to that item. In this case, you will want to entice customers with a steeper discount on the item. And if you’re trying to build excitement about a new product or line you’ve just introduced on your website. Then you’ll want to devise a sweepstakes, promo code, or contest to get your consumer base engaged and interested.
Determining the scope of your sale is a delicate process that will require fine-tuning before you’re ready to launch. You know your site and your merchandise better than anyone. What sort of sale will get people interested? How much can you afford to reduce your prices? Take some time to make calculations, and if this is your first one, don’t be afraid to keep it small. You’ll always have time to build up to bigger, more involved sales.
Keep in mind, consumers, LOVE a sale, they want to feel they are receiving a good deal! It is important to keep your sale clear cut. Here are some helpful guidelines to follow:
- What’s on sale: All products, a specific category of products or one particular product.
- What discount you’re offering: $ dollar off, % percentage off, free shipping on a certain amount purchased, etc.
- When to purchase by: Have a countdown clock on your website or advertise a specific end date to the sale.
- How they receive the discount: Either offer a specific coupon code or mark select products at a discounted price.
Once you’ve figured out the specific parameters of your sale, it’s time to assume your responsibilities as “artistic director” of your internet business. Now is the time to decide what theme your sale should have! Developing a theme may seem superfluous, but it’s not. Consistent branding helps consumers better remember your sale. If they’ve seen imagery or branded messaging they’ll be more likely to revisit your website and check out your sale. For more information on branding, check out this article in Brandingmag. It’s about branding more broadly, but the principles apply to branding of sales, too!
For your fabulous summer sale, try to incorporate summer imagery and ideas. For example, beaches, backyards, cookouts, ice cream—any pleasant image of summer can be the setting and theme for your sale! Then, build your specific merchandise into the theme, if possible.
For instance, if you own an online furniture business (and if you don’t, you should definitely consider it!), you could come up with a “Summer of Home” theme. The sale can be built around the idea that the right furniture can help you relax at home. Paint the picture it is better to have a “stay-cation”! Do some brainstorming and come up with some fun summer+merchandise pairings. This may be the most fun part of owning your own internet business!
It is important to use seasonal theme imagery along with catchy buzz words that relate to the season. Try these – Sizzling Summer Savings, Beat the Heat with Hot Savings – Enjoy ____% Off! or Sweltering Heat = Flash Sale! You get the idea, right? Once you have your seasonal theme and buzz words you can then top it off with a tempting discount. All elements you need to draw summer shoppers into your online store!
Mobilize your Social Media Following
Social media is GREAT for sales. There are few better methods of communicating quickly and interactively with consumers who have expressed an interest in your business. Social media can be used during a sale to help gather quick responses and engagements from your followers.
Wishpond has a comprehensive list of types of promotions you can run on social media. They include sweepstakes, photo contests, referral promotions, and hashtag contests.
A great way to solicit responses from followers is to ask a question about their personal experience that goes along with your promotion. For instance, if you own an online furniture business you can ask followers what their first big furniture purchase was. You can let followers know when they respond they are entered to win a product from your website. You can select one winner on a designated date. Then you can simultaneously announce a sale happening for all those who didn’t win the contest. This is a great way to not only interact with your followers but also great for promoting your current sale.
Photoslurp offers up some examples of excellent social media promotions for you to browse. Your followers’ responses will also help you understand who your customers are, and what they want to see from you. It’s an excellent data-gathering tool. Plus, a way to broadcast promotions, and the possibilities for fun and creativity are endless!
No matter what your business, you can reap the benefits of the summer spending mood! Take stock of your online store and what you hope to accomplish this season. Then start building your amazing summer sale!