In the last newsletter we covered the basics on Gearing Up for the Holidays, and it was well read. A question arose though: how do you plan for the holidays if your business isn’t a holiday shopping hotspot?
This is a dilemma more than a few retailers may face. Fishing tackle may not seem to be what everyone wants stuffing their stocking this year – shocking isn’t it? But you can turn your otherwise unthought-of business into a holiday wonderland with proper planning and with minimal investment.
Create a Buzz
If you have never been known for a holiday hotspot, start changing that now. Work your social media campaigns and let every follower know of your holiday plans. You do have holiday plans for your business right? These should be extended hours, sales on certain items, or discounts on specialty items. Start building the buzz now by hinting at the special deals you will be offering and when the announcements will be made.
Starts sharing great gift ideas for those that many find are hard to buy for. Order your gift cards now and post pictures of them. The more excited you are about the holidays and the shopping associated with it, the more excited your customers will be as well.
Create a Santa’s Workshop
If space allows in your store, create a special section that will showcase prime gift-giving items. These should include specially packaged goods created by manufacturers just for the holidays. They can include starter kits for fly fishing or pan fishing. Don’t forget to display special combos for entry-level angling – these make great gifts for the younger generation. For more diehard anglers who seem to have everything, be sure to display higher end rod and reels and consider offering easier return policies in case the recipient would prefer a different model.
Don’t forget to display the plethora of fishing accessories and gift items that many of you carry. Wader repair kits, mugs, picture frames and apparel all make great gift items as well.
The key is to make sure this area is easy to access, stays well stocked and has a multitude of price points for every shopper. Ensure your staff is trained on selling all of these goods and know how to talk to customers who are unsure of what to buy for anglers.
Sell While You Can
If you have leftover items from years past or just items that never sold well, mark them down and get them in front of the holiday crowd. You never know what might catch someone’s eye, especially if it is at a reduced price. One man’s less desirable piece of fishing tackle is another man’s treasure. Just because you didn’t sell many of that item doesn’t mean it won’t sell at the holidays.
Offer Something Different
Many church or civic groups raise money through the holiday season by setting up in local stores and wrapping customers’ gifts. Normally these groups ask for a donation to wrap the gifts, and they generally charge the store nothing. Not only will this be a nice perk for your customers – after all, wrapping a new fishing rod is never fun – it also shows your community spirit. The members of the group coming to wrap will surely spread the word that they will be set up in your store and give you plenty of free advertising. Start asking around now what groups in your town do this and see if any of them would like to set up in your store.
Give Your Customers a Gift
The holidays are a gift-giving time and what better way to say thank you to your customers and let them know you too are in the holiday spirit than to give a gift to them. The gift to them can be as expensive or inexpensive as you like. You can offer something as simple as a coupon off of their next purchase, or a candy cane to sweeten their day of shopping. Think outside the box and consider how many shoppers you may have to give your gifts away to. Create gifts for different sales totals if you like as well. Giving something back to the customers that are helping you make this the best holiday season is also a great social media post.
While giving a small gift away to your customers is one thing, giving away a real holiday gift is another. Work with your suppliers and create an in-store giveaway that the average angler cannot resist. Work out ahead of time what the package will include and when the drawing will be held, then promote the heck out of it. Having a dream package for anglers may cost your store, but in the end is sure to bring in the customers.
These half-dozen ideas should get you started on creating a buzz this holiday season for your store. We will continue to offer you ideas in each newsletter leading up to the holiday shopping season. If you have ideas of your own that you have used in the past, share them with us all on our Facebook page or in our LinkedIn group.