Store owners often pull out all the stops to ensure a steady stream of customers during the festive period. Whether it’s keeping boutiques open a few hours longer, offering discounts, or running competitions to engage a particular crowd, once the thrill of the holiday dies down, the flurry of shoppers can be hard to sustain. So after you’ve recuperated from the hectic festive season, reviewed the results of the year gone by, and set goals for the next one, consider these strategies to help you start 2015 on a high note, and maintain a steady flow of clients throughout.
1. Hold pop-up sales
Since these are unadvertised, customers need to visit your boutique to know if and when you’re having one. Hence, if you have regular pop-up sales (say, once a month), clients will frequently stop by in anticipation. Make it worth their while and maximize your gains by highlighting items that need moving stat. To attract a new audience, try inviting a brand that offers something complimentary to what you are selling (e.g. bags, jewelry, shoes that go well with the clothes in your boutique) and only retails online to hold a trunk show in your store.
2. Generate some buzz
The best way to get traffic through your doors is to build up excitement around your business. If something noteworthy happens, share it with your fans and followers through social media. Consider hosting a networking or cultural gathering, and invite as much media as possible. If the event goes well, you might get a write up in the local newspaper (talk about free advertising). Also be sure to take advantage of opportunities to partner with other businesses for money-making ventures and co-promotions.
3. Amp up your advertising efforts
Although many choose to spend the bulk of their marketing budget on holiday season ads, it makes sense to really push your promotional agenda during slow periods – to beat competition to the consumer dollars. Concentrate on banner ads and social media opportunities to get the most bang for your buck.
(image via www.friendbuy.com)
4. Set up a referral program
The main goal of any referral program is to urge loyal customers to recommend your business to their friends and acquaintances in exchange for an enticing reward. How the program works is completely up to you. Some of the options include offering clients a discount or some store credit for referring a specified amount of new customers to your boutique. To make sure you’re not breaking the bank, reward your brand ambassadors after their friend makes a purchase at your boutique.
5. Revamp your store
The seemingly insignificant changes to your physical space can make customers want to spend more time browsing, and ultimately buying. Try a new wall color, play with lighting, and review your approach to merchandising. Find fresh ways to showcase items that are not selling – maybe they are hidden in places that are too high or too far. Be as creative as you can, but do remain practical, as complicated displays can deter customers. Just remember – sometimes it’s the small things that can make a big difference.