Though brick +mortar shops are ghost towns right now, online shopping is surging amidst the economic uncertainty. And while jigsaw puzzle companies, natural home cleaning brands, and anyone making hand sanitizer is seeing the lion’s share of the uptick, all brands stand to benefit- if we play our cards right. We’ve rounded up six strategies to boost sales during the COVID-19 pandemic along with a slew of other helpful posts on the topic. We hope you’ll roll up your sleeves and put them to good use!
STRATEGIES TO BOOST DIRECT-TO-CONSUMER SALES
Tell your community how to help you. The impact of the shutdown on small businesses around the world is on the hearts and minds of consumers thanks to the national media. But have you told them your story yet? Now is the time to swallow your pride and share from the heart about what this outbreak means for your future. I’ve shared messaging from a few brands I think are doing this exceptionally well- I hope you find them inspiring, too.
Ask them to make a purchase right now if they’re able to do so. Encourage them to tag three friends and tell them about your business if they’re not in a position to spend right now. Request that they leave a review of their favorite product- it takes just 60 seconds, and it will help you launch out of this shutdown with more spring in your step. Our communities want to help us- they just need a little nudge and direction. Don’t be afraid to give that to them.
Enable a “buy now, pay later” (BNPL) option on your website. These services enable shoppers to instantly apply for a small loan at checkout on your site. Essentially, a third-party vets the applicant, makes a quick lending decision and manages the loan in its entirety while shielding your company from risk. You enjoy immediate payout in full, which means cash in your pocket now, and more accessible payment arrangements for those who want to support you. Check out these popular BNPL services:
Create discounts for essential workers at this critical time. Employ some smart technology, and this can be an easy way to reward the community we’re all counting on while tapping into new audiences that you likely weren’t reaching. We love VerifyPass for instant, automated verification checks for military, first responders, and teachers.
Offer gift cards. During any crisis, there’s inevitably a population who feels the impact less acutely. Those demographics have money to spend, and they’ve proven that they’re happy to contribute in support of causes they’re passionate about. Ask them to vote with their dollars and make a small loan to your business through the purchase of a gift card. You can bank the revenue now, and they can treat themselves later! Shopify recently enabled gift card functionality on all of their plans to help small businesses. This is one of the best ways to boost direct-to-consumer sales during this COVID-19 outbreak.
Push subscription options. What’s better than converting a casual browser into a $40 transaction? Turning a casual browser into three $40 transactions! That’s the power of offering subscriptions: customer acquisition costs plummet while average lifetime values soar. They provide a nice boost to your bottom line at a time when revenue is desperately needed. The secret to subscription management lies in sound technology, and we recommend ReCharge.
Get creative with existing raw materials and finished products. This is an incredible way to boost sales during COVID-19. We’ve watched in awe as brands turn this pandemic into an opportunity to liquidate discontinued stock or surplus raw materials, injecting cash into their businesses. Other brands are offering special kits or bundles designed especially for those trapped at home. A few of our favorites:
- Through Sophie & Lili, Jennifer Vallez has turned her popular illustrations into sew-at-home doll kits. Unsurprisingly, they sold out in record time.
- Bryr Clogs opened their leather archives for limited runs of gorgeous clogs in discontinued-but-still-coveted colors. They rolled our a fresh color every day of the week, with accompanying Instagram videos to promo the big reveals.
- Australian designer Kathryn Green literally broke her website when a throng of shoppers flooded her Inkling website to score remnants of long-discounted stock in her “Fun Things for Sad Times” sale.
- Cait & Co.‘s founder Caitlin Abshier dispatched a heartfelt email sharing that she’d laid off her production staff. She asked her audience for help putting them back to work through the sale of her new “Delight Boxes.” You can score $100 worth of self-care products for just $49.
- It’s a Sweet Life– a local bakery in the hometown of Lucky Break HQ- assembled DIY cookie kits: pre-baked sugar cookies in fun shapes, tubes of ready-to-use icing, and colorful sprinkles. Parents looking to keep the kids busy can score the package for just $25 with curbside pickup at the bakery. They completely sold out of kits in their first week, and the bakery plans to offer a new themed kit each week.
Implement free or flat-rate shipping. In the age of Amazon Prime, high shipping fees are a deal-killer for online shoppers. At the moment, they’re looking for deals that stretch their dollars as far as possible, and you’re keen on protecting your brand amid a global pandemic. Reduced flat-rate or free shipping offers are a win-win for you both!
HOW ARE YOU PROMOTING D2C SHOPPING RIGHT NOW?
If you have an ace up your sleeve, a fresh idea you’re chewing on, or a market trend you’ve seen, we’d love to hear about it! Drop a comment below to put it on our radar.
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