Summer is a highly anticipated season, but for some industries, business slows down because it isn’t a major shopping period. But with proper planning and strategizing, you can make summer a prime purchasing season for your business.
Weather can affect retail sales by 23% to 40%, so you must formulate a game plan to keep customers coming back throughout the season. Furthermore, positive summer cash flow can help fund your winter inventory to ensure you can meet the demand surge during the holidays.
9 Ways to Boost Sales This Summer
Increase your sales this summer with our top 9 revenue-increasing strategies.
1. Engage Customers with Giveaways and Loyalty Programs
Running a loyalty program is proven to increase sales as it engages consumers, incentivizes repeat purchases, and improves customer satisfaction. If you don’t have an existing initiative, consider running a summer-specific points program.
Product giveaways and freebies are also a surefire way to enhance your brand image because everyone gets delighted by free stuff! Customers will feel like they received more value for their money. Receiving a gift may also help patrons develop a stronger brand affinity because they feel special and acknowledged by the company.
Want to run a loyalty program but not sure where to start? Here are six examples of loyalty programs to get you thinking.
2. Offer Limited Sales
Short-term sales can help you reduce seasonal inventory while delighting customers with more value for their money.
Weather-based sales are the way to go this summer, as temperatures fluctuate with occasional rainfall between sunny days. If you have weather or season-specific products, monitor the weather forecast for the week and plan for sunny-day and rainy-day flash sales. For example, a clothing store may offer sleeveless tops at half price on high-temperature days, leveraging the consumer's need to dress more comfortably to combat the heat. On the other hand, a restaurant may have “soup of the day” specials during rainy days when customers will likely want something warm and hearty.
Time-bound flash sales instill a sense of urgency because customers need to purchase immediately (or within a short timeframe), or else they’ll miss out on a rare deal. The beauty of flash sales is that they are fuss-free to implement, and you don’t need a reason to have one. An eCommerce retailer can hold a flash sale that’s only a few hours long, while physical retailers may need to run it for a few days to sufficiently get the word out.
3. Offer Summer Classes and Workshops
Almost every business can offer classes and workshops because whether you sell products or services, your company revolves around unique expertise. Make your business feel more relatable by offering customers a hands-on experience on your side of the fence. You can run the workshop yourself or tap a topic expert who is also skilled in teaching. As a thought-starter, a fashion brand can offer silkscreen printing classes, while a local café can provide baking lessons.
4. Leverage Outdoor Events and Weekend Spots
Summer is a busy time when everyone seems to be up and out – from school-aged kids and teenagers on summer break to adults taking well-deserved time off from work. Check if events are happening in your area and if businesses like yours can be involved. Perhaps there’s a weekend market you can sign-up to join, a festival you can participate in, or a home game where you can set up a pop-up store.
5. Maximize Holidays
There are several local, national, and international holidays that occur during the summer months. Make these special days work for your business by offering holiday-specific promotions or products. Understand the needs and mindset of your target consumers and anticipate their purchasing behaviors these days. For example, many hold get-togethers on th of July and Labor Day to celebrate the holidays, so convenience stores, grocery stores, and restaurants prepare for the rush ahead of time.
Additionally, consider the typical life events of your consumer base and explore ways that you can anticipate their needs. For instance, encourage parents to avoid last-minute buying by running a sale on school supplies or services. The sale can be done in August, but you can promote it as early as mid-to-late July.
6. Revamp Your Window Display or Homepage
First impressions matter. But in retail, first impressions can mean the difference between gaining a sale or losing a customer. For brick-and-mortar stores, revamp your storefront or window display to suit the season. Put your summer products front and center so that potential customers know what you have to offer, even before they step foot into your store.
For eCommerce businesses, redesign your homepage to highlight your summer sales and products. If you have special promos for first-time buyers or discount vouchers for certain items, make sure these stand out on the page.
7. Join Forces through Partnerships
Expand your consumer base by partnering with other businesses or organizations that are related to your business. This mutually beneficial relationship will help both parties build awareness within a new target market. For example, a jewelry brand may partner with a popular designer or local celebrity to conceptualize a new product line.
Partnerships are not limited to other businesses but may include groups and organizations as well. A café may partner with a local sports team to be the sole coffee and pastry business within the area during home games. You can also partner with non-profit organizations that are in line with your company’s values, to drive brand affinity while giving back to your community.
8. Create Summer-Specific Products
Summertime brings season-specific needs and problems that customers seek solutions for. Show customers that you have just what they’re looking for with summer-specific products and promos. Retailers can offer product bundles consisting of summer essentials, such as swimming apparel plus sunglasses or sunscreen plus moisturizer. Barbershops and salons can offer summer haircut promos for those going short to beat the heat.
Gift cards are cash to be spent solely on your business, so there’s no reason you shouldn’t have one! Make your gift cards gift-worthy by designing them with a summer theme. Allow customers to buy gift cards for the same dollar value or use them as rewards for loyal customers. Just make sure you have a POS system that is equipped to process a diverse range of payment methods, including gift cards.
As you boost your sales this summer, lean into a POS system that can scale up with your business and meet your evolving needs. Contact True POS for a free quote today!