Like Everything, Start Early

For the past several years The National Retail Federation trade group has stated that over 40 percent of people begin their holiday shopping by Halloween. Launching holiday ads as early as possible gives you plenty of time to build up to the Thanksgiving and holiday rush and build awareness for your brand. If you are in last minute preparatory stages make sure that you have the basics covered for higher traffic during peak days.

Social Media Drives Sales

Social Media can help drive sales in various ways. Maintaining a presence on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus and Instagram can be extremely valuable in building brand awareness and a following customer base. Using these accounts properly can drive a measurable increase in sales and build hype for your upcoming holiday sales. This can also put you in direct contact with the types of people you should be running holiday ads towards on the social platform and let you know more about the demographics your should be targeting.

Imagery is Important

Presents, snow, wreaths–all these images inspire comfortable thoughts of the holidays and gift-giving. Using these and other holiday themes in your campaign shows customers that your business has that “holiday spirit” and also lets people know that some kind of special promotion may be going on. When applicable, video can be a massive influence since shoppers who watch some kind of video regarding a product or service are twice as likely to become customers than those who don’t. Social media is a great place to share these as long as they remain unobtrusive and short.

Look at Last Year’s Data

Take advantage of the information available to you by looking at last year’s campaign. See what kind of products and services were trending on google and when in order to plan for your business to convert as many customers as possible.

Highlight What Makes You Special

With all the sales and businesses competing during the holiday season it’s important to highlight your Unique Value Proposition, or what your company can offer that makes your business stand compared to the competition.

Make Gift Guides

Recommendations can play an important role since people are usually uncertain on what to buy. Google’s trend report from this year stated that approximately 7 out of 10 shoppers don’t know what they’re looking for while holiday shopping. That is a huge percentage of people who are looking for someone to tell them what they should be spending money on and where they should be spending it.

Optimize Your Site for Mobile

More and more people are feeling comfortable to use their phone for online shopping. Last holiday nearly half of all online holiday shopping was done from a smartphone, which means that your website needs to look good and be easy to navigate from any device. Making sure its performance is also up to speed is also crucial when nearly 80 percent of online shoppers who have an issue with a slow-loading or confusing website say they will not return again.

Use Holiday Keywords & Be Specific

This should come as a standard to anyone who dabbles in SEO, but remember that every holiday is different and the slight changes in popular keywords can provide an opportunity to capitalize on a market. Use your available tools like Google Suggest and Trends to see what’s popular throughout the holiday season as well as to predict and plan for the future.

Holiday Season Means More Than Christmas

Don’t miss out on targeting a large percentage of the demographic by narrowing your holiday ads to only those who celebrate Christmas. This sort of bias handicaps your business in terms of customer base and overall sales. Instead, focus of universal holiday season themes such as gift-giving and winter

Create Urgency

Make sure you emphasize the importance of limited time and once-a-year discounts to your customers. The reasons we get excited about sales is because they will go away, and year after year shows a high percentage of shoppers who make Black Friday purchases stating they would not have made the purchase without the sale. Be creative, but one marketing trick many businesses have been employing in order to emphasize this urgency is having a timer on their landing page counting down to the sale.