How-To Use Signs During Black Friday and Holiday Shopping

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For many retailers, Black Friday is the biggest shopping day of the year, and the Christmas holiday season is sometimes more profitable than the rest of the year combined. Shoppers have to come to expect long lines, crowded stores, and out-of-stock merchandise, none of which keep them from pursuing the “perfect” gift. To make sure the holiday season is a success for your store, you need to promote your sales. One of the best ways to do this is by using retail signs.You’ll want to plan ahead to decide what your Black Friday and holiday sales will look like. For chain stores, this information likely comes from the corporate office, but for independent stores, it’s up to you to decide. Identify key items to push that you think will be great sellers for the holiday season. Craft a plan for your sale(s), determining the “hook,” whether it’s a percentage off, a Buy-One-Get-One deal, or even a gift with purchase. Just having a holiday sale isn’t enough-you need to create some sort of content or description of the sale to drive customers through your doors in search of bargains.Once you know what kind of sale you’re going to have, it’s time to promote it. Since Black Friday is set as the Friday after Thanksgiving, customers will be expecting it. It can be effective to tease them with ideas of your upcoming sales. Print window clings for your store windows which show just a glimpse of your sale, be it the name of the sale, a picture of a product, etc. You don’t want to give away all of the information yet, as your competitors might under-cut you, but you do want to excite customers and create a buzz in your store.Plan well in advance for the day of the sale. Many stores run print advertisements in the Thanksgiving Day newspaper, and if this is an effective marketing strategy for you, go for it. After all, when your customers are stuffed full of turkey, they’ll want to relax and look through the paper for the next day’s great deals. You’ll be closed on Thanksgiving, so make sure the night before you close that you have staged your store appropriately for the sale (or come in early the morning of Black Friday). Hang a banner above your entrance that lets customers know you have Black Friday bargains. In addition, add bold window graphics to your storefront that show customers how much they can save. Inside the store, clearly­ mark which items are on-sale, be it with vinyl stickers or even by grouping them in one section which is identified with banners. The store is going to be bustling, so to avoid a customer service nightmare, customers will need to easily locate your bargains.Another important note is to include a time frame in your signs and advertisements. This sale won’t go on forever, so by adding a deadline, you’re encouraging customers to get in early to get the best deal. Note the time you open for business and when you close. In addition, many retailers stagger their sale, offering greater discounts early which lessen throughout the day. Die-hard bargain shoppers will be crafting their strategy on Thanksgiving Day, so make sure you’re their first stop.