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A common belief among ecommerce retailers is that the post-holiday season is an appropriate time to take their foot off the gas. They assume that customers are exhausted from the holiday shopping frenzy and have little interest in buying more.
Don’t make the mistake of going quiet after the holidays.
The reality is that after-holiday sales present a unique opportunity to continue the holiday momentum. You can keep the good times rolling by setting up the right campaigns and ensuring they’re ready to go.
In this article, we explore the best post-holiday sales strategies to help you extend the holiday spirit, drive sales, and fortify your brand for the year ahead.
The benefits of reaching out to customers with post-holiday sales
Reaching out with after-holiday email campaigns allows you to show appreciation for loyal customers who supported you through the busy holiday season. You can offer relief from the pressure of shopping for gifts and let them treat themselves a little with tempting deals and other perks.
As for all the newcomers attracted to your store by your exciting holiday deals, now is the ideal time to nurture a regular communication strategy that keeps them in the fold. With your brand fresh in the mind and your contact list boosted with recent sign-ups, post-holiday sales can help you to turn those one-off buyers into loyal customers for many years to come.
Post-Christmas sales also give you a good opportunity to clear out any leftover stock you might have accumulated over the holiday period. That means that you can kick off the New Year with fresh products and ideas while prolonging the feel-good factor of Black Friday deals and bargains.
However, post-holiday campaigns require a different strategy to the hustle and bustle of the previous months. Many customers will have developed general fatigue of promotions and shopping, so will appreciate a more relaxed, nuanced approach.
With that said, let’s look at some of the best ways to reach out to customers with your after-holiday email campaigns.
5 of the best post-holiday email campaign strategies
Your holiday sales and customer data is gold if you can successfully make use of it. The following strategies effectively leverage your valuable data so you can reach out to the right customers with the right message at the right time.
Send follow-up emails and build loyalty with new customers
Let’s begin with a follow-up email campaign. Here, you can use segmentation to reach out to different customers with personalized and targeted messaging.
For example, you can send a ‘thank you’ email to new subscribers who made their first purchase over the holidays. It doesn’t need to be anything complicated or fancy, just a polite show of appreciation for their purchase and perhaps some information about the benefits of your loyalty program. This shows that your brand is more than just a one-off grab for cash—you genuinely care and have much more to offer.
Here’s an example from brand Ulta:
Now is also a great time to reward your frequent, high-value shoppers. These can be found in the ‘Champion’ and ‘Loyalist’ stages of your customer lifecycle. Look to go the extra mile with these customers and make them feel special, perhaps by offering them a special gift or discount in your follow-up email. This ‘cherish’ strategy is an effective customer retention tactic that keeps your best and most valuable customers happy and engaged with your brand.
Hopefully, as part of your holiday sales strategy, you had browse, product, and abandoned cart automations up and running. These automated follow-up emails are triggered when visitors browse pages and products without making a purchase.
They also boast consistently high conversion rates, making these effective reminder emails an essential part of every retailer’s holiday and post-holiday sales plan.
Cross-sell with transactional emails
Despite the news that open rates are pretty much dead thanks to Apple’s release of iOS 15, it is useful to know that post-purchase and transactional emails have had the highest open rates of all automated messages for some time now.
As you can see in the table below, order and shipping confirmation emails achieved an impressive open rate of 61.1% and 63.9%, respectively, in the first half of 2022.
Enterprising retailers have realized that these highly-read emails represent an excellent opportunity to boost their sales and revenue via cross-selling. Here’s an example of cross-selling in an order confirmation email after a customer bought a trampoline:
Omnisend makes this easy by allowing you to add personalized product recommendations into your transactional emails, based on previous purchase and browsing behavior. This adds to the shopping experience by showing complementary items that can increase the value of the initial purchase. Product recommendations should feel natural and useful, never pushy.
You can also insert discount codes into these automated transactional emails. This is useful for encouraging a next purchase for first-time shoppers, and for offering rewards to loyal repeat customers.
Offer post-holiday deals that allow customers to treat themselves
If you wish to keep that positive holiday sales momentum rolling (and who doesn’t!), you’ll need to keep offering timely and relevant deals. However, getting the best post-holiday sales possible needs a different approach.
Customers have probably spent generously on gifts over the hectic holiday season and are now looking to treat themselves. Personal wellbeing products like books, exercise equipment, and other lifestyle goods are popular choices as people look to start off the New Year with a positive mindset. Take this change in customer mindset into account as you launch your after-holiday sales. Choose subject lines perfectly tailored for New Year season.
This is also a chance for you to clear out your inventory. It’s always better to have too many of your best-sellers than risk selling out early with too few, and it’s likely that you’ll end up with some leftovers from the holiday period. These are your obvious starting point for post-holiday deals and can be offered at a nice discount.
Kick off your post-holiday email and SMS marketing by segmenting your best-converting holiday shoppers and targeting them with personalized email campaigns and SMS. These are the shoppers who know your brand and have spent generously on gifts for others. Remind these customers that it’s time to buy that special product that they’ve always wanted. Many people wait until after the holidays to get a great deal for themselves, hoping for clearance sales just like these.
Promote your post-holiday sales with discounts, early clearance sale access, and other special incentives. Be sure to reset and reduce your email frequency after the holiday period though—this is not a time for aggressive promotions. A simple reminder that it might be time to treat yourself is enough.
Sync and retarget with Facebook and Google
If you want to keep your brand fresh in the mind going into your post-Christmas sales, you should be reaching out to them with personalized messaging over both Facebook and Google.
Audience syncing allows you to seamlessly and automatically sync your contact segments into Facebook and Google for more effective ad targeting. You’ll be able to retarget non-subscribed holiday shoppers and expand the reach and relevance of your ads by building lookalike audiences of your highly-converting email contacts.
Use your Facebook and Google retargeting ads to show personalized product recommendations based on what shoppers have previously browsed or purchased. Perhaps they were shopping for gifts during the holiday season and browsed products they’d like for themselves—this is a good opportunity to remind them of that.
You can also highlight deals on your best-sellers, promote your leftover stock, or simply keep your brand front of mind with interesting and relevant content. With seamless integration of your contacts to Facebook and Google, you can run your after-holiday retargeting campaigns on autopilot and deliver a consistent, sales-driving marketing message.
Try Buy One, Get One Free (BOGO) sales
Everyone likes getting free stuff. The buzz and anticipation that buy one get one free (BOGO) sales can generate is a great way to keep the holiday vibes going. BOGO promotions generally convert better than traditional discounts, helping to boost your engagement at a time when shoppers could be forgiven for having a little sales fatigue.
BOGO pairs well with your need to clear out excess inventory from the holiday period. Rather than it gathering dust in costly storage and warehousing areas, use it to boost revenue in your post-holiday sales. Simply offer your leftover products as a freebie alongside premium, but slower-moving products at regular prices.
This strategy appeals to the psychology of shoppers who love getting something for free. It also allows you to clear your excess inventory quickly while making revenue on higher-value products.
Other common variations of this strategy include Buy Two Get One Free and Buy One Get One 50% Off. An excellent example is this campaign by Goshen Coffee Roasters.
Ultimately, BOGO is a win-win post-holiday marketing strategy that consumers will love. It’s a chance to show your customers how much you appreciate them by giving them the thrill of a free gift. This will also give a big boost to your customer loyalty and retention efforts. Try it out on your after-holiday sales this season, especially if you find yourself with stock left over.
The holiday season is gloriously hectic and profitable, but it only comes once a year. To maximize the impact of the higher engagement and revenues you received, you should look to supplement it with some timely and tempting after-holiday email campaigns.
However, you might be a little tired after such a busy period, especially as everyone else has been enjoying time with friends and family. Understandable!
That’s why Omnisend makes your post-holiday sales a breeze, giving you all the tools you need to create, automate, and execute your email campaigns with speed and confidence. Start free today and keep the holiday spirit alive for as long as possible!