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5 Ways to Rock Summer eSales

Have you already created a summer eSales strategy? Or are you waiting for your busiest time – the holiday season?

Everyone knows the holiday shopping season can be make-or-break time for retailers. Businesses focus on Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday. In Cyber Monday Madness – Is Your eStore Ready?, I talked about setting up a holiday gift guide, creating enticing doorbusters, and designing engaging holiday pictures – all good ideas to get ready for the Cyber Monday rush.

So why not try them during the other 11 months of the year? Why not create a killer sales strategy tailored for each season? What if you started drawing in new customers now so you have a larger customer base by December?

5 Ways to Rock Summer eSales

Summer is the perfect time to try something new in your eStore. Whether you have a large eCommerce website, sell directly from your blog, or have a shop in an online marketplace, you can design a fresh marketing campaign around everyone’s favorite season – summer!

#1. Add a Summer Guide (even if you’re not a summer business)

Camping, swimming, summer vacation, relaxing by the pool, biking, BBQs, and baseball. It would be very easy to create a summer guide if you sell products related to any of these activities. But it doesn’t matter if your niche has nothing to do with summer – you just need to be a little more creative.

Lauren Conrad creates summer book lists. Mashable has the 25 Apps You Need to Survive College (hitting the back-to-school market). And don’t forget that selling online means you are not limited by borders – you can promote any summer holiday you want!

Here are a few:

  • Independence Day – United States
  • Canada Day – Canada
  • Picnic Day – Northern Australia (change it if that’s not the most popular) 🙂
  • Bloomsday – Dublin

Whether or not you’re a summer business is secondary. Come up with a unique, creative, and festive way to showcase your products or your brand.

#2. Add a Discount They Can’t Refuse

Discounts are among the easiest ways to lure customers into making a purchase. It’s always easier if they believe they’re getting a good deal, and discounts are extremely effective for luring shoppers back after they’ve abandoned their shopping carts.

Online eCommerce platform Selz allows sellers a variety of discount options to use in their eSores, including a specific percentage or dollar amount off, totally free, or free shipping. Etsy offers sellers three discount choices, so sellers can create any kind of strategy they want. Just don’t forget to make it a limited time only discount, as the best discount offers create a strong sense of urgency.

#3. New Pics

It doesn’t matter what you sell – it helps a lot to add new pictures to your entire platform every season. This includes your website, email templates (if you use them), social media headers, and all other marketing material. You never want your pictures to feel out-of-date or old. You always want fresh, new, interesting pictures that showcase your products and build your brand. Here’s an example from on-demand eCommerce platform Viral Style’s homepage banner:

viralstyle banner

If you want an extremely affordable option for creating beautiful images with embedded text, try Canva. They have templates for many social media headers, and you can upload your own pictures/logo for free. You can use different pictures on each social media site – just be sure to keep the same vibe across your entire platform.

#4. Support a Cause You’re Passionate About

Have a passion for saving the rainforest? Maybe you want to help stop the dog meat festival in Yulin, China (one of actor Ricky Gervais’s favorites). Or maybe there’s a local organization where your business’s support could make a difference.

The key is to choose a cause you truly care about, never just for good PR. Stay away from politics and most controversial issues. Instead, adopt a cause that you can support for years to come. Supporting social causes is like rocket fuel for your social media campaigns. People love to share your good work, it builds your brand and makes your job much more pleasant.

How you support a cause is up to you. Have a one-time sale with the proceeds going to a certain cause. Or invest your time, not money, into a cause you love. Online magazine Startup Savant gives 10% of its profits to children’s education and has helped more than 30,000 students:

startup savant

#5. Build Your Authority with a Blog

This may seem like obvious and incredibly simple Business 101 stuff, but 60% of businesses that blog regularly actually acquire more customers. It’s great for your SEO, gives your business a voice to build your brand around, and it’s very affordable (even if you’re paying writers to create your content).

Jenny Blake, author and business strategist, uses her blog to talk about a wide variety of issues, not just business. She leans towards mindfulness and healthy living and includes topics like meditation and yoga along with public speaking and her new books. Plus, she’s always promoting other businesses and linking to their resources. This is an excellent way to create a strong networking opportunity, as the businesses you promote will most likely promote you back.

jenny blake blog

Create a Summer Strategy that Rocks

Your online store should always feel inviting and create ways to keep customers on your site longer. Designing a complete platform strategy for summer is one way to draw customers in with new products, new content, or a new look. Create an overall summer strategy that is right for your business, your eStore, and your budget.

Try something new, or attack the entire season from a new perspective. Think about your niche and what they love to do during the summer. Plus, if you play your cards right, you could find a new target market to add to your email list.

And your summer customers can easily become your new Cyber Monday customers.

Images: ”Summer sale. Yellow large-scale letters standing at the beach under a blue sky.  /Shutterstock.com

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Liesha Petrovich, co-founder of Startup University and founder of Micro Business Essentials, a blog dedicated to helping the smallest businesses make more money. In her free time, she’s working on a Doctorate in Entrepreneurship. If you're thinking about starting your own business, pick up Liesha's free course: The 7 Deadly Startup Sins And How You Can Avoid Them and follow her on Twitter http://microbusinessessentials.com

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Comments
  • Christina Giliberti

    Congratulations to all, very worthy round-up!

  • Thanks Christina.

  • Kyle Kam

    Thanks for this, Niall. I was very surprised when I saw this. Got me hyped up for my next contribution. Haha. 🙂

  • My pleasure, Kyle and well done again! 🙂

  • These are great tips to boost summer sales – or all year round as you’ve mentioned. Thanks for sharing them with our readers Liesha

  • Pramod

    This is a very nice article.

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