'Tis the season for making a list and checking it twice (a wish list, that is!). When it comes to making sales, the holiday season is truly the sweetest of them all. But for many shoppers, finding the perfect gift for their loved ones (or themselves) can be a little bitter. With so many 5-start-worthy gifts out there, how do you find one that’s just right?
If you ask any seasoned eComm expert, a gift guide is the secret ingredient to making holiday shopping easy for customers. Just like adding frosting and sprinkles to your holiday bakes, gift guides make the shopping experience a little sweeter. To help your store design the perfect gift guide, here’s everything you need to succeed this season.
Why a Gift Guide Is the Icing on the Cake
Your customers adore your products year-round and are loyal fans of your brand. But when the holiday season rolls around, it's not they who will necessarily be purchasing from your brand; it's their friends and family, and these gift-givers might not be as familiar with your product lineup. The first-timers coming to your storefront know this is your year-round shoppers’ favorite brand, but they don’t know where to start.
So, how do we ensure their browsing experience is as seamless as one of your seasoned shoppers? That’s where your gift guide comes in. Plus, your gift guide can also be a valuable source for loyal customers looking for seasonal products, new drops, holiday deals, limited-time offers, special edition designs, and more!
Here’s how to whip up a gift that will make the shopping experience merry and bright for first-time browsers and seasoned shoppers.
Step One: Select Your Products
Creating a gift guide is like crafting the perfect recipe. You want to use the very best ingredients. Begin by selecting the products you wish to feature. Typically, your gift guide should be about two-thirds of your best-selling items and one-third of those hidden gems that deserve the spotlight.
To do this, dive into your previous year's sales data to find opportunities among popular and lesser-known options. Consider the recipient and the gift-giver. Is the gift highly personal, or is it something your ideal customer would be thrilled to find under their tree? This will help you narrow down your list to a delectable dozen or so options.
Step Two: Mix (and Match)
Here's where the magic happens. Find creative ways to bundle your products together, combining the perfect ingredients to create a masterpiece of a final product. For example, if your brand sells skincare, pair products that work together, like a face wash and a microfiber facial towel. You can even introduce a new item or a free gift, such as gift boxes or baskets, to add a little extra incentive.
Decide how this bundling will affect pricing. Should you offer a discount to entice shoppers or include a special discount code for loyalty members to encourage users to sign up for rewards? The choice depends on your niche and clientele, but it's a great way to attract shoppers searching for that perfect gift.
Step Three: Flavor it for Your Audience
Like slicing a cake into perfect portions, segment your gift guide to cater to different recipients, like “gifts for dads” or “gifts for him/her.” Or, go for lifestyle segments, such as the fitness enthusiast, the adventure-seeker, or the super mom.
Depending on your industry, audience, and product range, your gift guide may involve creating several mini-guides in one. The secret is to consider who you're targeting and why they're buying these gifts.
Step Four: Whip Up Creative Elements and a Marketing Strategy
The final big creative step is creating and publishing your guide – and the piece de resistance: plan your digital marketing campaigns. Remember that the target audience might need an extra dash of persuasion to make a purchase. With this in mind, craft unique and engaging campaigns that drive them to convert.
Step Five: Let Last-Minute Shoppers Share in a Slice
Don't forget those who prefer to save their holiday shopping until the last moment. Make sure your guide communicates guidelines and deadlines for pre-Christmas delivery. No surprises here! Consider offering gift cards and vouchers as an electronic alternative for the procrastinators.
Ensure Your eCommerce Holiday Gift Guide Is a Success
The holiday shopping season is here, and getting your gift guides live now is a must. If you need a hand in whipping up your gift guide or want to explore ways to make this season a recipe for success, consult an eCommerce marketing agency. With a helping hand, you’re sure to enjoy a season that’s merry, bright, and oh, so successful!