Propel your 2018 Holiday Sales with these Marketing Ideas

Posted on

Take a deep breath, Elkfox is here to help our eCommerce merchant friends tackle Black Friday and the holiday rush.

It’s a long period stretching from the start of November right up until the January sales, we’re going to break it down into sprints and show you nifty Shopify apps to use to make the festive season less manic.

20% of the average retailer’s profits come from the holiday season, so you don’t want to be left behind. We’re not into scaremongering clients here on Elkfox, but you’ve got to be pragmatic. It’s 2018 and customers are starting their holiday shopping earlier than ever.

Put on your crepe-y cracker hat and let’s get sales optimising!

Get the elves to dress up your Social profiles

Super responsive, able to tackle the surge of customers

Shake up your social media profiles to make the most of the holiday season sales. Think Santa hats resting on logos, and reindeer scampering across your profile Facebook banner.

You don’t have to go all-out kitsch if it doesn’t fit your brand. Take this H&M spread, it oozes with personality and you can they’ve cleverly created a present hamper for the hipster in your life.

Optimise your content for mobile as 40% of sales in the 2017 period came from smartphone orders.

Twelves Days of Christmas

The twelve days of Christmas is a popular marketing campaign for online stores. From the first of December, you can offer one-day sales on a particular product for the duration of the twelve days. The twelfth of December still gives time for parcels to arrive at your customers’ doorsteps before the big day.

This technique encourages people to check out your site daily but only if you lay down the groundwork.

You’ll need to be active on all your social media accounts announcing today’s new product. Insta Stories is a great space to showcase the sale of the day and to wish your community a happy holiday season.

Be sure to market the product to the customer and not the consumer. Show them how much value their loved one will derive out of your product.

Custom Wrapping

Another option is to showcase your festive packaging. A lot of people would prefer wrap gifts themselves so if you can provide a bespoke wrapping service, you’ll find it easier to convert leads.

Free Shipping

Offer free shipping through your social media using codes. When customers stumble across a code, they’re more likely to feel that they’re getting a good deal.

During the holiday season, there’s a lot of competition. You don’t want to waste all your effort spent attaining this traffic and converting leads just to fall at the last hurdle.

Not providing free shipping during this period can have a big impact on your sales. So incorporate the shipping prices across your range instead to cover the expense.


Right, what you want to achieve here is the virtual version of donning your customer with a glass of mulled wine in front of a roaring fire while watching their favourite seasonal movie.

Think of the John Lewis ads. ‘Tis the season that brings friends and family together, it makes people reminisce on when they were teeny tots pretending to sleep while Santa left goodies under their tree.

Earn your audience’s favour by creating the warm-and-fuzzy holiday cheer. They’ll associate you with these pleasant emotions and head back to your site next year.

The best way to learn how to play on customers’ nostalgia is to learn from those that do it best.



View this post on Instagram

The countdown's begun - but what's behind door number 1? #December, we're ready for you! #fridayfeeling

A post shared by Nordstrom (@nordstrom) on


Nordstrom did the twelve days of Christmas sale beautifully in 2017, and they’ll be a good one to keep an eye on when their 2018 seasonal campaign hits the ground in a few weeks.

Hearing the sweet, sweet voice of Celine Dion is no bad marketing strategy either. She might be a little out of most eCommerce store’s budgets though!


Music has a strong part to play in awakening the season’s cheer when marketing. But also feel free to mix in a good measure of humour to make what would otherwise be a standard festive ad.

Black Friday & Cyber Monday

Now we’re onto the two major days for online stores. It goes without saying that you’ve got to be prepared for these.

They’ve already made the commitment to buy, so they already trust your brand. You can add in a funny seasonal push, such as “Go ahead, get something for yourself, Santa isn’t looking!” or another hook that fits with your brand’s voice. It’s a great way to maximise your average order value during the big sale days.

Cyber Week II was an unexpected opportunity that marketing analysts were not expecting in 2017. If you’re not familiar, this week rest between Christmas Day and New Years Day.

54% of purchases during this period were impulsive which means that customers can still be swayed to purchase products that didn’t feature on their letter to Santa. It’s essential then to have an automated social media campaign running while your team is clinking, munching and making general merriment during the holidays.

The shopping carts were filled to the bim, equal to that of Black Friday and online retailers are eagerly anticipating a similar trend this year.

Gift guides

When the holidays arrive, you’ll likely be filled with dread at the prospect of having to find gifts for at list a few loved ones on the pressie list. My father, for example, has really simple tastes and it’s tricky to wrap up anything that adds value to his life. But believe me, I am a stickler for trying and every year I dig into many a gift guide article to find that perfect gift.

And they’re not just valuable to present hunters.

Featuring in a gift guide, especially a prestigious one in your industry offers a big boost to your sales.

What most businesses don’t know is the level of input an online store can have in getting their products into these prospect-churning articles.

Search around Google for last year’s gift guides to find the one that would be a good fit for your brand.

To find out how to feature on your chosen gift guide, climb down the rabbit hole here.

Landing page no-gos

Avoid going overboard with pushy content such as autoplay videos and overloading leads with festive pop-ups. They’ve grown in frequency over the last few years to the point that it can take prospects five or six clicks before they can engage with the landing page!

If you’re going to opt for a pop-up make it simple and have a really strong CTA. Again, put people in a good mood with some Yuletide humour.

We’ll be rolling out more festive insights throughout the following weeks so have a peek into our blog for more content on optimising your store to capture sales. If you’re looking to really nail the season’s campaign this year we offer consultations for Shopify businesses. Get in touch!