5 Essential Retail Strategies for the 2013 Holiday Season

The holiday season for the retail sales is fast approaching. Get motivated and prepare for it. Now is the time to consolidate sales and marketing strategies into a laser sharp, focused plan for the busiest time of the year.

Here are five essential strategies to ramp up retail sales this year:

1. Be sure to take full responsibility for the success or failure of all retail marketing during holiday time. By owning up to the fact that store owners are ultimately responsible for the ups and downs of retail sales charts, it keeps the focus for solutions where it belongs.This is not the time to criticize the local merchant group, the town, the mall, the construction signs, sidewalks or even Santa himself.

2. Consider gathering information for those rainy, snowy days ahead. With so many people purchasing in such a short period of time, it’s easy to forget to ask customers for contact information or to sign them up for future notifications of sales and events. The fantasy is that retail sales will never slow down again, right? How could it with so many people in the store for the holidays?

3. Product knowledge and customer service is not the same as sales knowledge. The store makes money when a sale is made. Make certain that the staff knows the difference between product specifications and the art of retail selling (helping people make decisions that are good for them). Superior customer service is always a necessity, but keep focused on making actual sales and gaining new customers.

4. Get out of the “museum” mode. Retail marketing costs good money. People go to a museum where they are free to look all day. Unfortunately, retailers don’t get paid for people just to look. When the staff member from behind the counter says “If you need any help, just let me know”; the store is in museum mode. Get away from the counter (unless a sale is made) and converse with your customers to find and fill their needs.

5. Don’t run from the new retail sales technology. Times are changing very fast in just about every industry. If the technological experience is not part of the solution, then the absence of it is part of the problem. Learn about retail marketing and sales online integration where retail technologies are blended with the status qua. Become aware of where the retail industry is and where it’s going in the future.

Contributed by nationally recognized retail expert Rocky Romeo, a retail sales specialist and keynote speaker residing in Brigewater, New Jersey. 

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