The holiday season is over, and the dust has settled. You’re checking your bottom lines, managing any returns and taking stock of your remaining inventory.
Like many retailers, you probably stocked up on many of your most popular products, hoping to avoid the unwanted scenario of selling out. And even if your holiday sales exceeded your wildest dreams, there’s always that inevitable surplus of post-holiday stock that lingers around in your warehouse like those relatives that refuse to leave your home.
It’s time to get rid of that excess inventory and start the year off fresh. Here are a few tips to help you clean up the clutter (aka, boost your sales) this month.
1. Make it about the customer
The new year is a great time to reconnect with your newly acquired Christmas customers — as well as encourage them to buy from you again at a discount.
Send out personalized emails to recent customers and reward them for their loyalty. Identify them by their purchase and encourage them to buy similar or complementary products at a great price.
2. Make paid search work hard for you
Set up seasonal-specific paid search campaigns to clear up your stock. Experiment with keyword terms to attract the right sort of traffic, whether it’s an add-on to a Christmas present (such as a laptop cover or a cell phone charger), or an early Valentine’s Day gift.
Consider bidding on terms such as “After Christmas Sale” or “New Year’s Sale” and use long-tail search terms specific to your products. Long-tail keywords not only cost less, but they’re also more likely to convert shoppers who are searching in more detail and are further down the purchasing path.
3. Make delivery free and easy
Because of Amazon Prime and, consequently, the retailers trying to keep up with Amazon Prime, many customers have grown accustomed to free shipping throughout the year. Offering free shipping on your excess products is a great way to differentiate them from those sold by retailers that haven’t yet caught on to this trend. Dangling the free-shipping carrot can often make the difference between a shopper and a buyer.
Cut through the noise created by the rush of discounts and sales in the first few weeks of the year by making your offers stand out. According to comSore, 83% of US online shoppers are willing to wait two extra days for a package if delivery is free. Similarly, 58% of online shoppers indicated they have made an online purchase simply to qualify for free shipping.
4. Make your products available to more customers
As more and more people around the world buy online, you’re in a strong position to sell your excess items to a global audience. For example, there are many European marketplaces like Zalando, La Redoute and AllYouNeed that have large, loyal customer bases. Or, if you’re an Amazon or eBay seller, look into the many countries where they have additional marketplaces. Other useful overseas marketplaces to check out include MercadoLivre in Brazil and Tmall in China.
Need more? Check out our “10 Ways to Clear Out Your Extra Inventory” eBook for more helpful tips.