SALE! SALE! SALE! Every week there seems to be some sort of sale, don’t get me wrong, I’m not against sales, I love them – but I’m getting sick of retailers telling me that this is the sale to end all sales and then three weeks later they have the same sale!
For retailers, sales are a great idea to implement – however they should be thought out and strategically planned – especially if you are a premium brand like Kathmandu who is currently having a 60% Easter sale.
Kathmandu’s sales promotion strategy has worked really well, because they don’t excessively have sales like Myer or other stores. Also, as they are seen as a premium brand, customers are willing to pay a premium and not wait for the next sale. See, the problem is, the consumer is quite intelligent and once they catch on that you have numerous sales throughout the year – any prestige goes out the window and customers will only shop when a sale is on. Which is the case for Myer – I have not bought anything full price from them for the last eight years, because I know the item will be on sale in a few weeks time!
Don’t get me wrong if you are a retailer like Big W, Target, Kmart or Harris Scarfe, sales will work extremely well for you, but, if you are wanting to be seen as a premium brand do not fall into the trap for just having sales for the sake of it.
Our tips for when planning a sales or clearance strategy is to do the following (note this advice best applies to boutique stores):
1. Notify your customer database first – these are people who are number one fans, they need to be felt that they are special, so by offering them exclusive offers you can be sure that they will tell their friends and family. On this note, you can also offer special sales to those who follow you on facebook or twitter.
2. Have a good reason for the sale – this year alone we have had Boxing Day, Labour Day weekend specials, pre Easter specials and I’m sure there will be an Easter and post Easter sale. Make the sale sound like it actually is special. Maybe the items are only available during the sale period or you have excess stock to sell. The key here is to make the sale exciting, don’t make it sound like you are trying to sell off junk nobody wants!
3. Have key staff on to handle the sale period – often sale periods are a busy time for retailers, so ensure you have the right staff on to handle the pressure, you want to make the sales process as easy as possible so customers will want to shop with you again.
4. Make it clear that this sale is ending soon – By making it clear that the sale will be ending soon, you are demonstrating the added value of buying now. By making it clear that the item may not be available tomorrow or that the sale ends at exactly 5.00pm this Sunday consumer urgency will rise! BUT do not lie, if you get caught out any trust the consumer had will be gone.
There you go! You now have some simple tips to use when implementing your next sales promotion strategy. For more tips or for information on how Vent2Me can help, please don’t hesitate to contact Vent2Me!
Cents and Sensibility
Julia Taine, Executive Director of Vent2Me, is a marketing problem solver and mentor. A mover and a shaker, Julia sees a niche in an industry, and takes it, by making it her own. Julia started Vent2Me, because people she knew were struggling with their online presence and their digital strategies. Julia knew she could help these people, and so here she is today.