How to Beat an Online Retail Summer Sales Slump

How to Beat an Online Retail Summer Sales Slump

June 17, 2022 Off By Koehler Home Decor

Does it often seem to you like as soon as Memorial Day has passed and the beach and barbeque season gets into full swing your ecommerce retail sales take a nosedive?

If so, you are not alone and it’s not your imagination. Figures across the board suggest that many online retailers sell 30% less than they do in fall or winter. Rather than simply accept this summer slump however why not use this time to make some long overdue website updates, test out new products and even take a leaf out of Amazon’s playbook and create a summer sale that really sizzles?

Here is a little more about those ideas, and others besides, that will help you make it through the summer and out into the fall, and the gear up to the big holiday shopping season, in great shape.

Commission a Mini Makeover for Your Online Store

When your business relies on the functionality and efficiency of your website 24/7, which is the case for any online retailer, then making upgrades and changes to it can be hard, as any downtime could potentially result in lost sales and frustrated customers.

The slow season however, is a good time to finally address the issues that your site almost certainly has. Begin by taking a few hours to take a proper look at your website, the back end, the front end and your analytics, to create a list of problems that need to be fixed.

Then, whether it is a site that is running more slowly than you had realized while you’ve been so busy, or pages with excessive bounce rates, broken links, or a design that is just looking really dated and needs a visual refresh, make a plan to tackle them all, knowing that a little downtime will probably not have the impact it would if you were to undertake the same project in October.

Celebrate Some Holidays

While they may not be as big sales wise as Christmas, Thanksgiving or Hanukkah, there are still holidays in the summer that are worth celebrating from a retailers point of view. Beginning with Memorial Day – a great time to encourage customers to splurge on summer basics – and then including Father’s Day Independence Day, Labor Day and more.

You can even chose to ‘celebrate’ the myriad of ‘little holidays’ that have sprung up – everything from more serious events like International Youth Day (August 12) to silly but fun events like Embrace Your Geekness Day (July 13) or National Bacon Day (the weekend before Labor Day) and many more. There are plenty of excuses for celebratory sales and clever promotions during the slower summer months if you use a little creativity.

Create Your Own Summer Spectacular

Amazon only hosts one exclusive sale offering a year. Prime Day. Which has often fallen sometime in July. Thanks to their targeted marketing push, their total sales on Prime Day competes with Black Friday and Cyber Monday. And while you might not be able to reach the same levels that they do, with the right marketing hosting your own summer sales spectacular may prove to be more lucrative than you imagine.

Do Some Experimentation

With a little more time on your hands the summer can be a great time to try out some new products or promotions that you simply don’t have the time or energy to deal with usually. It can also be a great time to take a usually online only retail business offline.

Many cities host summer festivals, flea markets, and other multi-retailer events where local retailers can set up booths or tents to sell their products. The range of goods on sale is usually hugely diverse and the events attract people from across every demographic, so a few weekends offering the goods you usually offer online offline can be an excellent way to not only make more sales and test new product lines but also to gain potentially very valuable new marketing opportunties.

Stay Socially Active

Even though they may spend less time indoors on their computers your potential customers are very likely to still be active on social media all summer long. After all, is it really a proper vacation anymore if you DON’T share a slew of updates and images across your social media channels? And will anyone really know your kid graduated/got married if your don’t share all the details online?

This means it’s important that you stay active on social media and maybe even consider a holiday themed photo contest or something similar to keep your fan bases engaged and your presence top of mind.

Take a Break Yourself

If you can find someone reliable to ‘watch the shop’ for a week, and that need not be a person, as there are an increasing number of ways to automate the online sales process for a few days, why not take a break yourself? We all know that once the fall arrives it’s all systems go in the run up to the busiest retail season of all and taking a few days to relax and recharge now will help make sure that you are ready for it!

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