How a Retail POS Can Help Drive Sales Beyond The Holidays
The decorations are stored, the stockings are stashed, and small businesses wonder how to ring up more cash — i.e., how to increase sales in retail.
It’s easy to fall into a post‐holiday slump in January. The weather has turned, the crowds have dwindled, and the returns are looming. How can retailers keep that peak‐season motivation going and carry it into the new year? Let’s dive in.
Use Holiday Returns to Your Advantage
While no retailer likes to see a negative number pop up on their retail pos system, it’s good to remember that returns are also an opportunity to convert new sales. To encourage that; however, you have to be prepared.
Make the return process easy. You’ll undoubtedly run into gift returns without a receipt, but a good retail POS system with built‐in customer profiles lets you reference sales history quickly. It also gives you an opportunity, as you look up the information, to talk to the customer about new products they may not know about.
Keep transactions seamless. Embracing a retail POS system integration makes buy online/return in-store (BORIS) a breeze. You can reference the online order and customer profile from the store, source the return to the website, and put the inventory directly back in your retail POS. No need to reconcile inventory later.
Help your customers feel good about shopping with you. Show empathy, and ask why the item didn’t work for them. Understanding their preferences will help drive a new sale. Refrain from asking if they’d like to look around for something else; instead, be helpful:
“Let’s find something that works better for you.”
“I’ll get you the correct size.”
“Did you see that it comes in several colors?”
Even if a return doesn’t convert to a sale on the same visit, a positive experience will likely lead to continued patronage, whereas a negative one can terminate the relationship.
If the return doesn’t convert to a sale that day, fear not: A positive experience is likely to lead to continued patronage, whereas a negative one is a turnoff you don’t want to risk.
Target Customers through email campaigns based on purchase history
Whether they bought for themselves or others, segmented messaging around a particular brand or category is great for making your way back to the top of the customer’s inbox—and show that you’re paying attention. Past purchases can be identified through a customer-centric POS system.
Email personalized recommendations for other items from a brand a customer has purchased, like new clothing pieces to make a complete outfit. You can also make it content‐focused and link to blog posts or videos on your website, like “three winter recipes to try with your new stand mixer.”
Did you run a bounceback coupon promotion in December? Run a retail POS report of customers who earned them, and craft an email campaign reminding them that it’s time to spend before they expire!
Re-merchandise your retail store
Give your store a new‐year facelift: Takedown holiday decor as soon as January hits, re‐style your windows, and re‐merchandise your displays. People respond to fresh and stimulating experiences, so even if products have been lingering, repeat customers may notice them for the first time should they be styled differently.
The same goes for your integrated e‐commerce site. Refresh your homepage, update graphics and create new product collections. Try using themes based on upcoming holidays and special events.
Continue to prioritize convenience
Today’s consumer likes to have options. Sometimes they will visit your store in person, and other times they want to access your offerings online to pick up later or have their purchases delivered. Some might even be cross-border ecommerce customers. Make sure you are serving your customers no matter how they shop. Offer conveniences like buy online/pickup in-store (BOPIS), including curbside or window pickup, BORIS, private shopping appointments, phone orders, and video shopping.
Start planning for upcoming holidaysWith a POS system for retail, there’s no time like the present to start looking at your inventory and cost on hand to form your markdown strategy, draft your email campaigns and solidify your promotions for the rest of the year. Use our holiday and special events calendar below to help you start planning your retail marketing strategy around special holidays.
|January 18||Martin Luther King Jr. Day|
|February 2||Groundhog Day|
|February 14||Valentine’s Day|
|February 17||President’s Day|
|March 17||St. Patrick’s Day|
|April 9||Patriot’s Day|
|May 9||Mother’s Day|
|May 31||Memorial Day|
Super Bowl Sunday
|February 13||Galentine’s Day|
|February 16||Mardi Gras|
|March 8||International Women’s Day|
|March 14||Daylight Savings Time / Pi Day|
|April 1||April Fool’s Day|
|April 22||Earth Day|
|May 1||Kentucky Derby|
|May 5||Cinco de Mayo|
You love to hate them: It’s physical count season.
Have you conducted yours yet? Let’s take the pain out of PIs—use this guide to prepare your store and staff for a painless physical inventory!