It’s almost the holidays, which means that more people will be going into stores (or heading online) to buy presents for loved ones.
Given what the whole world has been through over the last two years, it’s time for us retailers to inspire happiness in our customers and the wider community. Sometimes making someone smile can change their whole day.
There are many ways to do this, which would largely depend on your business, available finances, customer values, and local needs, but here are some tried-and-true options that can spark joy for the rest of 2021.
Decorate the store
It’s time to embrace the holiday spirit and dress your store up for the holidays. The style and type of decorations might vary based on your location and clientele, but the point is to make your store look welcoming and joyful, in contrast to the very British weather outside. Also, if you play music in your shop, prepare a festive playlist to put everyone in a good mood, with a mixture of the classics and new favourites.
Get seasonal bags
Invest in some cute and colourful holiday bags with your store name and logo for customers to carry their purchases home in. Printed cotton bags, like those seen here, will be strong enough to last multiple holiday seasons and will advertise your shop to anyone your customer meets throughout their day. You could even advise customers that they can reuse the bags as gift bags for presents.
Create gift baskets
It’s hard to shop for some friends and relatives, so make it easier for your customers by pairing together items that complement each other, like bath bombs and candles. An incredible idea would be to sort gifts according to the recipient; i.e., music lover, dog parent, sports fan, or foodie. Remember to do gifts at varying price points to accommodate different budgets.
The easier you make it for people to shop with you, the more likely they are to shop with you again.
Offer delivery or collection
Not everyone will feel comfortable coming back into stores right now, especially if infections start to rise or restrictions are increased. To help these people feel more comfortable, allow them to order via your website, online store, or social media. They can either collect their order when fewer people are expected in-store or have it shipped to them.
Alternatively, if you can’t arrange postage yourself or are low on some products, you can often arrange shipping straight from your supplier to your customer.
Support our essential workers
The pandemic has been bad for us all, but key workers have been bravely doing their jobs throughout under incredible pressure and, in many cases, risking their lives to ensure that we were safe, healthy, and fed.
If you want to show that you continue to appreciate their sacrifices, whether they’re a healthcare worker, supermarket shelf-stacker, or refuse collector, here are some simple and effective ways to do that:
Offer a key worker discount
Arrange care packages of products to help them treat themselves
Donate a percentage of sales to a local appeal for key workers
Add in an extra product to a customer’s bag if they shop in uniform or mention that they’re a key worker
Have a donation box
Supermarkets often have a box near the exit for long-life food that can be donated to food banks and this is something that can be implemented in many stores over the holiday period. Talk to your local food bank to see what non-food items they require.
Toiletries and sanitary items are a year-round necessity, but even if you sell homeware or toys, you can often still have a donation box. After all, if someone can’t afford food for their family, they can’t afford presents, which can be just as disheartening for parents. There’s no reason why people shouldn’t be able to give their loved ones a nice present that was donated by one of your customers.
Finally, we’d like to wish all of you reading this, a very happy holiday season, no matter what you’re celebrating. We hope that 2022 brings you nothing but health, stability, and happiness.