The holiday season, especially Christmas, is a prime time for online retailers to connect with their audience, boost sales, and create memorable experiences. In this article, we explore why it’s the perfect time to run campaigns, the advantages of early planning, and the tips to ensure your campaign shines during this festive season.
Christmas is good for running the marketing campaign
For Christmas, consumers are generally more willing to spend money, especially on gifts, making it ideal for businesses to offer attractive deals and promotions. The tradition of gift-giving during Christmas naturally positions businesses to promote their products or services as thoughtful presents, and many companies rely on the season to achieve their year-end sales goals.
Additionally, the festive nature of Christmas allows businesses to get creative with their marketing, using decorations, holiday-themed content, and special promotions to capture customer attention and engagement.
Furthermore, the competitive landscape of holiday marketing encourages businesses to execute their campaigns effectively to stand out and gain an edge over rivals.
When is the perfect time to run your Christmas marketing campaign?
The ideal time for running Christmas marketing campaigns can vary depending on several factors, including your target audience, industry, and specific goals. However, in general, many businesses begin their Christmas marketing efforts well in advance to maximize their impact. Here are some key timelines to consider:
- Early to mid-November
For many e-commerce businesses, the holiday shopping season begins in early to mid-November. This is the ideal time to target early birds who enjoy planning and shopping ahead.
You can start by introducing Christmas-themed content, teasing seasonal promotions, and showcasing Christmas product collections and gift ideas through your website and marketing channels.
- Late November (After Black Friday and Cyber Monday)
These shopping holidays have become significant events for both online and brick-and-mortar retailers. You can capitalize on the momentum of Black Friday and Cyber Monday by extending special promotions and campaigns into the following week.
- Early December
Your Christmas marketing campaign should be in full swing by early December. This is when many shoppers are actively looking for gifts and deals. You should ensure your website is festive, your email marketing is high gear, and your social media consistently delivers holiday-themed content.
- Mid to Late December (Last-Minute Shopping)
Some shoppers procrastinate and wait until the last minute to make their holiday purchases. This is the time to run last-minute deals and promotions, address shipping concerns, and provide excellent customer service.
- Late December to Early January (Post-Christmas)
The holiday season continues after Christmas. Many people continue shopping for after-Christmas sales and use gift cards they receive.
You can consider running post-holiday campaigns, expressing gratitude, promoting gift card redemption, and offering post-Christmas sales to capture this audience.
- Late December to Early January (Year-End Clearance)
This is a great time to clear out excess holiday inventory. By offering clearance sales and making space for new products, you can efficiently manage your inventory, engage with post-holiday shoppers, and promote a sense of freshness and renewal as the New Year begins.
Remember that the best time to start your Christmas marketing campaign may vary depending on your specific industry and audience. It’s also important to conduct thorough market research and analyze past data to determine the optimal timing for your business. Additionally, be flexible and prepared to adjust your strategies based on real-time results and customer behavior.
Why should you plan the Christmas campaign early?
Cyber week kicks off Christmas sales
According to Australia Post’s e-commerce industry report, Black Friday began on the 29th of November and kick-started Christmas spending, with volumes peaking in the first two weeks of December.
Shoppers are increasingly starting their holiday gift-buying well before the holiday season. This shift allows them to sidestep the last-minute rush, secure items before stock shortages occur, and manage their expenses more effectively.
Early campaign planning positions your business to meet these changing consumer behaviors, take advantage of early promotional opportunities and provide early special offers to reach shoppers.
The trend of online Christmas shopping
- According to data from the National Retail Federation (NRF), in the United States, online holiday sales in November and December 2021 increased by 14.1% compared to the previous year, reaching a total of $225.2 billion.
- A study conducted by Statista revealed that 56% of consumers in the United States planned to do most of their Christmas shopping online in 2021.
This robust growth demonstrates the escalating popularity of online shopping during the Christmas season. Early campaign planning allows you to optimize your online presence, enhance the online shopping experience, build a robust digital marketing strategy, and secure the best online advertising opportunities. These elements are vital for ensuring a successful and profitable holiday marketing campaign.
Starting your campaign well before the holiday rush provides an opportunity to stand out in a less crowded marketing landscape, increasing your chances of grabbing your audience’s attention.
Early planning enables a more refined content strategy, as you have ample time for creative development and optimization. You can also make strategic budget allocations, seek cost-effective advertising opportunities, and avoid last-minute budget constraints.
By engaging in testing and refining your campaign elements, you can ensure your messaging, creative assets, and targeting are optimized for the best results. Moreover, early planning allows for data-driven decision-making, as you can gather and analyze past holiday season data, fine-tuning your campaign for maximum impact.
10 best tactics for Christmas marketing campaign e-commerce
Redesign your landing page
A holiday-themed landing page instantly conveys the season’s spirit and puts visitors in a festive mood. This emotional connection can make your brand more appealing and encourage visitors to explore your offerings.
You can use the landing page to prominently feature your Christmas promotions, special offers, and holiday-themed products. Make it easy for visitors to find and navigate through your seasonal deals.
Additionally, incorporate engaging and shareable holiday content on your landing page. This could include holiday-themed blog posts, videos, or interactive elements encouraging visitors to interact and share with others.
Gateway Church’s landing page impresses with its captivating visuals, user-friendly layout, and a centralized repository of holiday events, making it a convenient one-stop destination for visitors seeking Christmas-related information.
What sets their approach apart is how they strategically position Christmas details on their homepage. Instead of a conventional banner placed further down the page, they opt for a more direct and eye-catching approach.
A prominent, vibrant blue button bearing “Celebrate Christmas with us!” greets visitors right at the top as the page loads, set against a rich maroon background. This unique placement immediately captures attention, offering visitors a seamless and engaging way to explore the holiday events and offerings.
Create Christmas email marketing
According to OptinMonster, email marketing is pivotal in driving holiday sales, contributing to 20% of total sales. Email marketing offers a powerful channel to connect with both existing customers and potential new ones during the holiday season.
Building a lasting relationship with your audience is achievable through a well-crafted email strategy encompassing various elements, such as sending warm welcome emails, promoting enticing Christmas offers, retargeting customers with cart abandonment reminders, providing personalized product recommendations, and introducing loyalty programs.
As MeUndies did, you can create a Christmas gift guide for your target audience. The subject line offers a solution to a Christmas pain point: find the perfect gift ideas.
The brand used emojis to help the subject line stand out in your audience’s inbox and look more fun to interact with. Additionally, leveraging bright colors and visuals makes this campaign ideal for the brand’s younger audience.
Launching special deals
Shoppers are drawn to exceptional deals during the festive season; you can create urgency through limited-time offers, and flash sales can expedite conversions and drive higher sales. Special deals can also increase the average order value, as enticing offers like “Buy One, Get One 50% Off” or “Free Shipping on Orders Over $50” prompt customers to add more items to their carts.
Tailoring your promotions to seasonal themes and ensuring multi-channel communication, including emails, social media, and your website, will extend your reach and enhance your potential for holiday sales.
West Elm runs a campaign “24 Days of Christmas” to extend the period of customer engagement, keeping their brand at the forefront of their minds throughout the holiday season. This prolonged exposure increases the chances of conversions and repeated interactions.
A longer campaign allows for a broader range of promotions and special deals. You can experiment with different offers, such as flash sales, giveaways, discounts, or daily product highlights, which keep your audience engaged and curious.
Introduce season-only bundles
Exclusive bundles featuring discounted combinations of popular or complementary products are a potent tool for driving sales and engagement during the holiday season. These bundles offer customers cost-effective, convenient options for purchasing related items, enhancing their shopping experience and adding value.
The approach also supports cross-promotion, creating urgency and appeal for holiday shoppers. Tailoring bundles to different customer segments allows for personalization, making it an enticing option for those seeking thoughtful, convenient presents.
Boots’ strategic use of bundling to help customers secure the best deals is a noteworthy example of effective marketing. By emphasizing the price advantage of bundling, Boots communicates cost savings and convenience, simplifying the shopping process for customers.
Promote new arrivals
As holiday shoppers often look for the perfect presents, these fresh offerings inspire. By showcasing these products prominently, you can position them as desirable gift options. Additionally, crafting compelling narratives around new arrivals can resonate with customers emotionally, further driving interest and sales during this crucial sales period.
Everten uses a website alert bar with compelling CTAs to draw immediate attention to their Christmas collection. Simultaneously, they offer early email access to these new products, creating a sense of anticipation and exclusivity.
Build social engagement
On social media platforms, share captivating holiday-related content, including festive imagery, gift guides, and exclusive offers, to enhance your brand’s visibility. You can engage with your audience through meaningful conversations, respond to comments, and create interactive posts like contests to encourage interaction.
Moreover, you can leverage user-generated content and authentic storytelling to build trust and emotional connections with your audience. Countdowns, teasers, and holiday-specific hashtags create excitement and expand your post’s reach.
For example, Mulberry’s enchanting ’12 Days of Christmas’ campaign captures the spirit of the season and spotlights some of its holiday standout products.
You can express appreciation with personalized thank-you messages and exclusive discounts. Leverage loyalty programs to offer bonus points, special rewards, and holiday-themed benefits. Moreover, it grants loyal customers access to exclusive deals and early access to holiday promotions, motivating them to make additional purchases.
Another way is to add a festive touch by offering gifts with purchases. Personalized thank-you notes and surprise rewards build strong relationships, while referral rewards expand your customer base.
Sephora’s rewards cards express gratitude to loyal customers for their year-round support. More than just a gesture, they encourage customer holiday to spend at every loyalty level. Incorporating similar rewards strategies into your Christmas marketing campaign can amplify customer loyalty, inspire holiday purchases, and create a win-win festive experience.
Target last-minute shoppers
To effectively target last-minute shoppers, you can offer extended shipping deadlines to reassure them, promote e-gift cards for convenience, and highlight in-store pickup options. Then, real-time stock updates prevent frustration, while urgent messaging, last-minute deals, and email reminders prompt quick action.
You should ensure a mobile-friendly experience and create last-minute gift guides to ease shopping.
Bryan Anthony’s email strategy caters to last-minute shoppers, enhancing their shopping experience and driving holiday sales.
Target those who missed out
You can implement email retargeting, offering personalized reminders and exclusive deals to motivate potential customers to complete their purchases. Remember to send abandoned cart emails to those who left items in their cart. Utilize social media advertising to retarget users who interacted with your brand but didn’t convert.
Be sure to personalize your messaging, create urgency, and continuously seek feedback to improve your offerings. By targeting those who initially missed out, you reclaim potential sales, enhance your Christmas marketing campaign’s success, and build stronger customer relationships in the long run.
Mahabis has perfected this by introducing creative concepts like “Unboxing Day.” Extending the holiday feeling beyond Christmas can retain the festive mood and keep customers engaged. The key here is to be imaginative with your messaging and create a unique story that resonates with your audience.
Feature early access
Statistically, 60% of customers have stated that early access motivates them to join a loyalty program. This statistic shows the importance of early access not only as a seasonal tactic but also as a year-round strategy for building and retaining customer loyalty. By offering early access to sales, products, or exclusive content, you can entice more customers to engage with your brand on a deeper level.
Fossil effectively utilizes early access to stimulate user engagement. Through teaser emails featuring enticing visuals, compelling CTAs, and a sense of exclusivity, they create a strong desire for early access. This strategy not only drives immediate sales but also nurtures long-term customer loyalty.
Christmas in e-commerce is more than just sales; it’s a time to build lasting relationships, enhance brand loyalty, and create unforgettable customer experiences. By embracing these strategies and planning your campaign early, you can make your brand stand out and shine brightly in the e-commerce landscape during the holiday season.