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Build Your Online Store’s Holiday Marketing Calendar:

Build Your Online Store's Holiday Marketing Calendar

The holidays are a key time to sell online thanks to the gift-giving spirit. In 2018, Cyber Monday alone broke records with $7.9 billion in online sales. Retail predictions are even higher this holiday season, with online sales increasing up to 18%.

Want to maximize your sales this year? Start with a smart marketing strategy.

Prioritize and keep track of your eCommerce marketing plan with a detailed calendar of your promotions.

To get started, build these steps into your holiday marketing calendar:

  1. Create Your Holiday Sale

  2. Prepare Your Online Store

  3. Promote the Sale

Step 1: Create Your Holiday Sale

Decide on Promotions for Your Marketing Calendar

When choosing Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals, keep your competition in mind. Remember, most stores will run BFCM sales and customers will be making comparisons. So it’s important to create an appealing offer that stands out—something your shoppers won’t want to miss.

No matter what you offer, create a coupon code for the deal. This code will help you track holiday sales. You'll be able to use the data and gain valuable insight to improve future sales.

Here are different types of holiday discounts you can offer:

  • Coupons: Percentage or money discounts are straightforward. They tell your customers: “Get what you want, and get it for less.” You can incentivize certain products by limiting the coupon to a specific category. For example, save $3 on all soaps. Use coupon codes to differentiate and track your sales.

  • Free Shipping: According to Hubspot, 24% of shoppers are willing to spend more to qualify for free shipping. Consider setting a minimum order value, like free shipping for orders over $50.

  • Bundles: Give shoppers a “buy one, get one free” deal. This is a good opportunity to promote lesser-known products or include your bestseller so it gets maximum attention.

Brand Your Holiday Sales

This one’s optional but recommended. Keep BFCM straightforward by including Black Friday and Cyber Monday in your sale name. These buzzwords will immediately catch your customers’ attention and boost your rankings on Google.

During your December sales, have some fun with it. Create a sale name by tying together your products and the winter holidays, like “The Frosted Sale” for an online jewelry store. This is a good opportunity to further strengthen your brand to make your business stand out and entice shoppers.

Understand Your Marketing Plan’s KPIs

Take a day to set holiday sales goals, or key performance indicators (KPI). Do you want more sales? Site traffic? Engagement on your social channels? If you want to increase order totals, aim to increase your average order value. If you’re more concerned with boosting sales on the whole, measure your success by total revenue during the holiday season. Have a realistic idea of the figures you’d like to see.

When the holiday season ends, look back at your sales results. If you reached your KPIs, well done. This will be your benchmark for next year. Using the same budget, set your future KPIs 15-20% higher.

If you didn’t reach your sales KPIs, reevaluate your initial goal and marketing plan. Was your goal over ambitious? Were promotional opportunities missing in your plan? Look at your email marketing open rates, ad campaign budget, types of promotions used and sale dates. See where there’s room to improve and make adjustments for next year.

Step 2: Prepare Your Online Store

Set up Email Automations

Win back customers who left your site by triggering abandoned cart emails. Send personalized messages reminding shoppers what they left behind. To incentivize checkout, feature a limited-time sale.

You can also thank customers for their purchases or set up your own automations. Keep your branding consistent and write emails using your business’ voice.

Add Live Chat

Deliver instant customer service with live chat on your site. Merchants using Wix Chat on their site increased their sales by 300%. Set up an automated message to engage first-time shoppers. You can use this message to tell them about a sale, grow your mailing list or ask if you can help with anything. During the holidays, suggest gift ideas from your product collections.

Create a Holiday Sale Lightbox

Spotlight your sale with a popup that greets shoppers right when they get to your site. Before your holiday sales, use it to collect emails and send updates to interested customers. Once Black Friday starts, create a new popup with your promotion and a button to shop the sale.

Build an SEO Landing Page

Make a landing page targeting your SEO keywords for the holiday sale season. Include additional keywords, like Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Holiday Sale and special discounts. Find more targeted phrases for your products by checking the Wix SEO Guide and Google Trends.

Before the sale, use the landing page as an email collection tool. Once your holiday sale starts, give your subscribers first access to all the deals. This is a great time to create a featured collection, showcasing your online store’s best-selling products.

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Step 3: Promote the Sale

Schedule Social Posts in Your Marketing Calendar

Generate buzz for your sale with social media marketing. Schedule 5-7 posts per week. Use images and stunning videos to capture the attention of shoppers. In your captions, specify your discount offer and include links directly to your online store. For a full holiday transformation, add themed Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest cover photos.

Set up Facebook Ads with Wix

Create a paid ad campaign for Facebook and Instagram. Launch the campaign at least two weeks before BFCM. This lets Wix’s powerful AI run A/B tests, so it can best reach your target audience. Set a reminder to edit your ad caption once your BFCM sale starts.

Run an Email Marketing Campaign

Make an extra push to collect emails before the holiday season. You’ll want as many interested customers as possible on your mailing list. Schedule 1-2 emails a week to lead shoppers to your site. Be sure to set up sales launch and last chance emails. To generate customer loyalty with a sweet touch, send holiday greetings throughout the season.

Make the Most of Content Marketing

Generate sales leads with content your customers want to read. Write blogs on your site that feature your products, show off your customers or offer practical tips. Research the top seasonal searches in your product category and craft titles around your SEO keywords.

Gift guides are a valuable search term during the holiday season. Write a blog listing gift ideas from your online store. Give helpful and specific advice so the post feels valuable to shoppers, rather than a long ad. At the same time, write killer product descriptions to convince readers to shop your site.


Prep Your Online Store for Holiday Sales

You’ve got a strong sense of your eCommerce holiday sales strategy. Now start outlining your marketing plan.

Brielle Gordon

Marketing Writer, Wix eCommerce

Brielle is a Colorado native with a passion for innovation and helping to mobilize entrepreneurs. Brielle is a marketing writer for Wix eCommerce, which powers over 700k online stores worldwide.

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