How Big Box Retailers are Marketing for the Holidays

Robert Wheat

PPC Strategist

The holiday season is upon us! People are scrambling to buy the perfect gifts for their loved ones, driving more traffic to big box retailers. This is a crucial time, as many physical stores have struggled to keep their sales up with the rise of online shopping. According to Fung Global Retail and Technology, store closings have tripled to 6,700.

If you’re looking for ideas on how to effectively position your brand for the holidays, take a look at what the big box retailers are doing. You might think that these stores dominate and don’t have a need to advertise, but they too are feeling the pressure. Consider that for the first time, shoppers plan to shop online rather than stores like Walmart and Target.

What does this mean for you? With the right advertising and promotions, you can secure new business for the holiday season right alongside your big competitors. Here are some ideas to get you started.

Get Customers into the Holiday Spirit  

You’ll notice that all the major retailers are getting shoppers into the holiday spirit by doctoring up their online presence. Now is a great time to get your website and social media profiles looking their best, too. Start by reviewing your website and updating it with your latest holiday promotions.

Social media is a central platform for large retailers, so don’t ignore this channel either. To ensure that you’ll have plenty of content over the next month, try something fun like a “25 days of promotions” campaign. The more engaging you are, the more likely customers will stick around after the holidays.

Give Back to the Community

You might notice that retailers are making more of an effort to give back. One of the most common ways to do this is by donating a percentage of each sale to a specific cause. Shoppers like knowing that when they make a purchase, they’re also making a difference.

Consider some of the ways that you can have an impact on your community or support a great cause. Last year, the SEMGeeks team collected food for a local food bank for lower income residents in Monmouth and Ocean counties. The experience humbled our team while also making a difference in the community.

Offer Something that Others Can’t

With the ability to shop online, score great deals, and get free delivery, many people are happy to turn to the internet for holiday shopping. This is forcing businesses of all sizes to distinguish themselves. In other words, you need to find your lane and own it.

Do some research and determine how you can separate your brand from the pack. If you can't compete on price, maybe you can compete on return policies, extended warranties, free personalization, free gift wrapping, and so on. The big box retailers are doing this. Consider Walmart’s convenient Store Pickup, free shipping and returns until 12/23 from Target, and layaway for $1 down from Kmart.

It’s never too late to kick your holiday marketing campaign into gear. December is a crucial month, so get ready to review your website, amp up your social media profiles, and plan how to compete with other retailers. Everyone’s going hard this holiday season - even the big box stores!

About the Author: Robert Wheat

Rob was born and raised in Freehold, NJ and is currently a PPC Strategist at SEMGeeks. He holds a B.S. in Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing from Ramapo College. Rob is experienced across all PPC platforms, including Adwords, Facebook, Amazon, and more. During his free time, Rob can be found on the golf course yelling at his golf ball to cooperate, but it never listens.

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