How to Sell to Christmas Shoppers (Backed by Stats!)

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Considering how much time we spend staring at Facebook and Instagram on our smartphones, it’s no surprise that those technologies play a huge role in our buying habits.

Facebook recently analyzed global usage data from the 2015 holiday season to understand how its platform, Instagram, and mobile devices influence the habits of Christmas shoppers.

It’s a pretty cool report with lots of rich data. But what good is data without action items?

I broke the data down by date and added my tips for taking advantage. Think of this as your game plan for the final two weeks of the Christmas shopping season.

Ready? Let’s sell!

December 20ish. If You Can Ship It, Sell It.

The data: Online sellers are understandably focused on Black Friday and Cyber Monday, but 54% of consumers in the study do most of their shopping in December.

  • No wonder 72% of online shoppers consider shipping times when buying.

After all, you don’t worry about shipping time if you order in November.

Action item: It’s not too late! As long as your logistics operation (aka, you and your spouse stuffing FedEx boxes) can keep pace with demand, keep communicating your deals and shipping times to rope in last-minute Christmas shoppers.

December 24. A Day for New Year’s Resolutions… ?

The data: Some consumers complain about the seemingly seamless retail transition from Halloween to Christmas, but sellers aren’t the only people who get caught looking ahead.

  • It’s on Christmas Eve that Facebook sees its first spike in chatter about New Year’s Resolutions.

Action item: Christmas Eve is probably not the right time to bring up New Year’s resolutions. That said, it’s clear that you don’t have to wait until New Year’s Eve – especially if your company sells health, nutrition, or exercise products.

December 25. Airplane Mode? Yeah, Right!

The data: Online shopping stops almost entirely on Christmas Day, but people don’t exactly put their smartphones on airplane mode.

  • Facebook users published 800 million posts (86 percent of which were on mobile devices) on Christmas last year.

Action item: If you haven’t already, stop selling! You’re too late to close that one last deal. You shouldn’t go dark though. Craft a warm holiday message for your fans, schedule it using Hootsuite, and then please turn on airplane mode. It’s family time!

December 26. Offer Discounts to Move Surplus Product.

The data: Americans must be lousy at picking out gifts, because online shopping spikes again from December 26 to December 28. And a LOT of the shopping is done on mobile devices.

  • In fact, Facebook says shoppers are 1.39x as likely to shop on their mobile devices in this period than on Black Friday or Cyber Monday.

Action item: OK, turn your smartphone back on. It’s go time! Even if you were meticulous about holiday planning, you probably have a few great items that were overlooked. Slap a discount on ‘em to get them out of your warehouse and into the hands of post-Christmas bargain hunters.

December 31. Resolutions and the Moms Who Break Them.

The data: New Year’s resolutions become a topic for social media as early as Christmas Eve, but 34 percent of all resolution chatter occurs on New Year’s Eve itself.

  • Interestingly, parents were 1.59x as likely to say that they made resolutions and 1.31x as likely to say resolutions are made to be broken.

Action item: Does your target audience include a lot of moms? Align your product with her likely New Year’s resolutions, then slyly give her permission to cheat. She’ll appreciate the honesty.

How are you selling to Christmas shoppers?

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About the Author

Matt Simpson

Matt is a freelance writer for The DRIVE blog with expertise in digital marketing, social media, and copywriting. He's active in the #yesphx startup movement and has been recognized by AdWeek, Mashable, and more for digital innovation. Visit Matt's website or follow Matt on Twitter.

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