Is Your Pet Store Holiday Season Ready?
"According to a recent study, more people are prioritizing their pets’ needs and considering them as part of the family."
You look out the door on the way to open up shop for the day and there’s frost on the lawn. A tell tale sign that winter is upon us, and for a retailer, that only means one thing. Holiday Season.
With the Holiday season comes the added stress of gift shopping, decorating, and deciding which side of the family to visit first. According to a recent study, more people are prioritizing their pets’ needs and considering them as part of the family.
Because of this, we expect that there will be more pet parents going ahead of the wintertime rush and more pet products gifts granted.
So, let’s do this! Here are ways on how your pet store can be ready for the holiday season.
Festive decor. This mainly marks the beginning of the holiday high. Decorations help bring the merry mood inside your store and create a happy and fun environment for your customers to shop in. This will also instill in them that the holidays are near! Here are some ideas on what you can do to create a fun, jolly environment for your customers (and drive sales):
Put up a Christmas tree inside your store near the entrance. Hang ornaments with surprises on/in them (a percent off coupon, a free with purchase item, etc.) that customers can grab
Hang some Christmas lights all around your store. Consider using different colors or flashing lights around products you really want to draw attention to
Crank up that Christmas music! Customers can’t help but smile and sing along, keeping a cheery mood all the way to the register
Offer a meet-and-greet with Santa at your store for your customer’s and their pet families to snap that perfect Christmas card photo. They’ll come for Santa and stay for your awesome products.
Remember that your efforts with this shouldn’t be wimpy and so-so. This is your time to attract and impress more customers so use your holiday spirit and go all in to make your pet store as Christmas-y as possible! This will help make your store the go-to store for their holiday shopping.
Appropriate walking space. The holiday season may bring a higher number of customers through your doors. This means you may have to rearrange your store for a few months to make room for the extra bodies and carts moving through the aisles. Nobody would want to walk around on narrow walking spaces, bumping shopping carts with other people.
To do this, keep aisles in a proper distance from each other. It is recommended that your aisles are wide enough for customers to stand back and see all the products you are offering. A typical shopping trolley is about 2' wide, so for maneuverable space for two trolleys going in opposite directions 5'-7’ is typically comfortable.
Hassle-free checkout. Christmas time requires a more systematic and seamless checkout experience for your customers (since they will be in a rush or there’ll be a lot of customers lining up). You don’t want to run the risk of customer’s dropping items and taking their business elsewhere due to long lines and too many steps in the check out process. Here are a couple alternate checkouts to try:
Mobile Stations. There seems to be a new app or payment process everyday. Invest in some tablets and look into apps that make check out a breeze. You can use things such as Square, Venmo, QR scanners, and Apple Pay to help customers checkout no matter where they are standing in the store.
Increase Station help. Have more than one checkout station and have more than one person per station. This will help the efficiency. You could have one person scanning and checking items while the other bag the items and talk with the customers about their purchases and holiday plans.
Holiday incentives. Make sure you are able to include special discounts and giveaways to entice your customers, such as a percentage off of dog diapers/antler chews, free pet treats or an in-store drawing for prizes! This will encourage them to visit your store and purchase items because they can save more $$$$$.
Get the word out. You want your whole town to know what is up in your pet store and that you want to be part of people’s holiday experiences. That’s why press releases, blog content on your site and social media platforms, and campaigns all related to winter, Christmas, and the holidays are so timely during this time of the year to let people know what you’re up to and what you have in store for them!
The better the experience and the more fun your customers will have, the more likely they will be to spend time in your store and subsequently purchase more products. No matter what kind of holiday fun you are planning for your pet store, remember that the focus should be on everyone - your customers and their pet families - all having a great experience!
"The better the experience and the more fun your customers will have, the more likely they will be to spend time in your store and subsequently purchase more products."