For most businesses, the holiday shopping season is their last big push to meet any revenue goals they may have set for themselves that year.
According to the National Retail Federation, holiday shopping in 2021 reached a whopping $886.7 billion — a 14.1% growth from 2020. While big box retailers account for a majority of these sales, there is still plenty of room at the table for small- to medium-sized businesses to level up and hit their revenue goals. Roughly half of U.S. consumers are willing to spend $10 more on an item to support a small business, while nearly 3 in 4 intend to spend up to 50% of their holiday budget at mom and pop retailers.
Despite this, consumers are equally likely to flash cash at major retailers and at small- to medium-sized businesses. So how can your business compete?
Ecommerce and Knowing Where to Advertise
Online and other non-store sales accounted for $218.9 billion of the nearly $900 billion figure from the 2021 holiday retail season. So, how can you build a successful small business e-commerce strategy with limited time, budget, and resources? According to SalesForce, understanding the traffic you are driving to your site is key. Knowing where your shoppers are coming from helps you focus and put more driving behaviors behind that platform. For example, if you know a majority of your clients see you on social media, double down on your social efforts and supplement with a paid ad campaign. Cater to an older generation? Your clients may be more receptive to traditional linear campaigns. Whatever the source, targeting your audience in the right ways can drive leads and revenue.
Reach the Right Audience
If you’re starting a new ad campaign or new to advertising in general — the holiday season is a great time to kickstart your marketing. However, creating demand for your business is a timely and often huge undertaking. Instead, says to focus on capturing the demand you already have. Target the customers you know are in need of what you are offering, and craft your message specifically for them. This can look like a holiday sale targeted directly to consumers who have been in your area, or reaching an audience based on their shopping habits and consumer data. Don’t be afraid to layer your targeting efforts — reaching the right audience on all levels.
Holiday Messaging
It is important to align your goals with the message you are sending. If you want to increase in-store sales, make sure to offer incentives for in-person shopping. Interested in driving online sales? Focus on digital and social efforts that lead buyers directly to your site. Holiday sales and promo codes can add value for your customers and help drive sales. In fact, 64% of consumers say holiday discounts, promos, and sales would entice them to spend at small businesses. Incentives on shipping, ease of workflow when ordering, and a speedy website also add value to a customer’s experience.
One thing is certain, with the holiday season fast approaching, businesses must quickly decide on their goals, budget, and methods to stay ahead of the game. By taking action now, you are ensuring a greater chance of success and return on investment by year’s end.

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