This is a guest post by Cornelia Ortega discussing how retail sales have risen by 1.2%, encouraging hope for Christmas, plus 5 simple ways to boost your sales. Targeted primarily at the offline retail sector but some very relevant points for an online shop as well.
Facts and Figures
The Commerce Department noted that October ’10 sales for the retail industry jumped 1.2 percent from the previous month, the biggest gain since March. The rise was driven by a 5 per cent spike in auto sales, which analysts said was particularly encouraging because it showed consumers were ready to tackle big-ticket purchases. Additionally, September’s sales gain was revised upward from a 0.6 percent increase to 0.7 percent. Still, people remained choosy about where they spent their dollars. Furniture stores and electronics retailers each suffered a 0.7 percent drop in sales. Variety store sales also declined 0.7 percent, while health-care stores dipped 0.1 percent.
Instead, consumers returned to restaurants and bars, sending sales up 0. 3 percent. On-line retailers, which have held up a lot better than their bricks-and-mortar counterparts, registered a 0.8 percent jump. Consumers also bought more clothing, a 0.7 percent boost. Excluding autos, retail sales rose a decent 0.4 percent, in spite of the mixed performance across sectors. Retailers are hoping the momentum will fuel the all-important winter holiday.
According to a survey from the National Retail Federation, an industry trade group, nearly 11 percent of consumers have finished at least half of their holiday shopping, up from just a lot more than 9 percent a year ago. The group predicted shopper’s average spending would inch as much as $688.87 in 2010, a 1 percent increase over last year.
The NRF’s annual holiday survey found more shoppers are expected to purchase gifts for family and friends – as well as themselves. The amount of consumers who said they planned to indulge themselves rose eight percentage points to 57 percent this season. But the forecasts, coupled with the newest October data, paint an image of consumers treading carefully on their way back to the mall. Economists say that expenses are unlikely to rebound with no corresponding improvement inside the job market.
The unemployment rate remains stuck at nearly Ten percent, data released from the Bureau of Labor Statistics showed hope. Mass layoffs have declined in dimensions and frequency. And private-sector employment rose 0. 3 percent through the third quarter, in comparison with last year, the first increase since 2008.
How to increase add-on sales throughout the Holidays?
Here are some ways to boost the units per transaction, and boost the average transaction as a result.
If you like this, you should purchase that – Creating feature areas in your store who have a few major things you want to push for holiday surrounded by complimentary products helps sell more than simply that one item. Use signage and where applicable have your employees communicate with customers to help them know how the items interact.
Stuff the Stockings – Push stocking stuffers for holiday as customers will always be looking for those unique, fun little items that round out their holiday gift giving without breaking the bank. Create an entire stocking stuffer display and make it interactive, being a stocking stuffer smorgasbord to have customers to buy a number of additional items.
Sample products – When they test it, they may buy it. Make sure you’ve got products intended for testing everywhere and use signage, or have your employees interact to get customers to test different products. The possibility for a sale rises significantly if you possibly could put the product inside customer’s hand.
A warm drink will be the way to make them stay – offering a warm beverage like coffee or apple cider gets customers to linger longer. It adds time to scope out more of your store as they walk around enjoying their beverage. And which means they might find more gifts than that they had planned on, leading to increased sales.
Wrap the Cash Wrap – You’ve made a number of different ways inside your store to acquire your customers to acquire more, and the cash wrap may be the final opportunity. Make sure you have impulse items at your cash wrap that customers can grab and go. Products under $20 usually perform best. Bonus points for products that may be sampled in addition to 8-10 ones available for purchase.
So you? What exactly are your favourite sales techniques to increase Holiday sales?
About me: C. Ortega is writing for the retail sales training tips blog, her personal hobby blog devoted to recommendations to aid retailers to practice sales employees and keep our economy healthy.