fbpx
Retail Marketing: Halloween Marketing Ideas

Retail Marketing: Halloween Marketing Ideas

Retailers are beginning to prepare for the holiday shopping rush. 

And considering this year’s estimated spending of $8.8 billion, Halloween presents the perfect opportunity to kickstart your store’s marketing before the holidays.

Halloween by the Numbers

shopping inspiration graph

Based on the National Retail Federation’s (NRF) Annual Halloween Spending Survey, 68% of shoppers plan on celebrating Halloween this year – spending an average of $86.27 per person

And the top places that shoppers are gathering Halloween shopping inspiration are from online searches, inside physical retail stores, and through friends and family

The post popular items that shoppers are planning on purchasing include candy (95%), costumes (67%), decorations (72%), and greeting cards (34%)

NRF Halloween Survey Results

With these numbers in mind, we’ve put together a list of Halloween marketing ideas. Keep reading to find out how you can take advantage of these insights and sell more this Halloween season!

4 Halloween Marketing Ideas to Help you Sell More

1) Halloween Merchandising 

Halloween outdoor merchandising

28% of shoppers plan on gathering Halloween shopping inspiration from inside physical retail stores. 

So get shoppers through your door by displaying your Halloween merchandise (whether you plan on using an entire aisle or a single point-of-purchase display) at a prominent location. Ensuring that you have proper signage and a clear path leading shoppers to your Halloween-themed merchandise and displays, will also make them more likely to purchase.   

Even if you’re not in the business of selling costumes or other Halloween products, you can still spook out your store with some festive decorations and visual merchandising. Think about creating a window or point-of-purchase display that showcases products that you already sell – but with a Halloween twist. You can use spider webs, jack-o-lanterns, leaves, and Halloween colours (black,orange,red etc.) to spook things up. 

halloween window display

2) Halloween-ize your Online Presence 

halloween decorations

35% of shoppers site online search as their source of Halloween shopping inspiration. So in addition to dressing up your physical store for Halloween, it’s also a good idea to add festive elements to your online presence as well. 

Completely revamping your store’s website is time-consuming and in some cases, it can be expensive. But adding a Halloween touch to your website can go a long way in getting shoppers in a festive spirit. Including Halloween images on your homepage (download free Halloween stock images here), fixing themed add-ons, and adding pop-up designs are all cost-effective and easy ways to add a spooky feel. 

You can also drive more shoppers to your website by creating a separate page (a landing page) dedicated to Halloween. Here are a few tips: 

  • Create a Halloween gift guide for your shoppers that features all of your Halloween merchandise. If you don’t sell Halloween merchandise, consider posting helpful Halloween content. Some good content or blog post ideas include: “Halloween costume ideas for children”, “Halloween decor ideas”,”DIY costumes for adults”, and “tips for hosting a Halloween party”. 

  • Use Halloween keywords (this will help your store appear higher up in search). 

  • Promote any Halloween discounts or promotions that you are holding. 

Don’t forget to decorate your social media and email marketing campaigns for Halloween as well!

3) Google Local Inventory Ads (LIAs)

Google LIAs

Considering that the majority of shoppers are planning to use a search engine as a source for shopping inspiration, it is also a good idea to run local inventory ads on Google. These ads are tailored to users based on their location. So when a shopper searches for Halloween related merchandise, they will be shown in-stock product of local retailers in the area. 

Running Google local inventory ads (LIAs) is an effective strategy that many retailers have leveraged to drive foot traffic. In fact, Best Buy drove over 1 million shoppers to their stores with Google LIAs. The ads also resulted in a 44% increase in clicks to their website. 

Here are a few tips for optimizing your Google LIA campaigns: 

  • Target mobile shoppers: shoppers are searching on their phone before visiting physical stores – to ensure that their trip is worth it. In fact, 86% of Canadian shoppers said they will go to the store to buy when that store has an item they need or want immediately. You can target mobile shoppers by placing a positive mobile bid adjustment to your campaigns. It’s best to boost ad groups/campaigns that have strong mobile performance. 

  • Adjust for high traffic hours: while you want to keep ads active 24/7, it is a good idea to boost ad performance during high traffic hours. This includes the hours that your store is open and when your shoppers are most likely to search. 

  • Consider physical location: It is probable that shoppers from all parts of your city are interested in your products. But users closest to your store (20-35 km radius) are much more likely to visit. Target local shoppers by increasing bids for users that are closest to your store. 

For more information on how your retail store can easily implement Google LIAs to increase foot traffic and sales, click here

4) Add Halloween Products 

Halloween treats

If your store doesn’t sell any Halloween merchandise, you may want to consider selling seasonal items to boost your store sales. After all, Halloween is a billion dollar industry. 

To help you decide which items to sell/what would work best for your store, think about referencing last year’s shopping trends (shown above). 

The following are some good examples of how retailers can add in popular seasonal offerings: 


Happy Halloween and happy selling!

We will be posting more holiday related articles in the upcoming weeks. Keep an eye out on our blog or subscribe for more holiday marketing tips. 

#halloween #retail #increasesales #retailmarketing #marketingtips #builtforretail #retailpos #cloudpos 

Sell More: A Google Integration for your Retail POS

Sell More: A Google Integration for your Retail POS

A point-of-sale system is an essential tool for retail stores; from speeding up the checkout process to simplifying inventory management, store operations become more efficient with a retail POS software.

But a good retail POS system can help you do much more than just manage your store operations or track sales history – it can also help you sell more. 

Selling More on Autopilot

More people are searching online prior to buying (or “pre-shopping”) than ever before. According to Google: 

  • 3 out of 4 shoppers use a search engine to find a business

  • 7 out of 10 people made a purchase from a business they found using a search engine

Which means that getting your retail store to show up on Google is necessary in order to drive foot traffic and increase store sales. This is where integrating Google to your retail POS comes in.

3 Benefits of Integrating Your Retail POS with Google My Business

1) Be Found on Google

Google My Business profile

Building a strong online presence on Google starts with your store’s Google My Business listing. 

Google My Business (GMB) is a free online listing service. It ensures that your store shows up in online local searches and lets you manage how your retail store appears in both Google Search and Google Maps.

Here are a few reasons why GMB is so powerful:

  • GMB listings dominate the first page of Google search results 
  • ​They appear based on a viewer’s actual location
  • They appear in local searches for business types on both Search and Maps (for ex: if a user searches for “pet stores”)

A direct GMB integration allows you to set up and manage your Google My Business listing right from your retail POS software. Not only does this reduce the time and effort required to set up a listing, it also helps your store appear higher up in Google Search and Google Maps when local shoppers make relevant searches to your business.

2) Advanced Targeting with Google Local Inventory Ads (LIAs)

With automated POS integration to Google, retailers now have the power to reach out to shoppers when they are near one of their stores.

By running Google Local Inventory Ads (LIAs), stores are able to drive in-store sales with online product ads that allow retailers to attract nearby shoppers at the right moment – when they are ready to buy!

Not only do LIAs only show when local shoppers are within a certain distance from a store, with an automated POS integration, LIA ads run directly from your POS and only show when products are in stock. This means that LIA ads automatically turn off when products sell out to help minimize your marketing costs. LIAs even encourage urgency by letting nearby shoppers know that stock is low and that they need to act.

According to Google, shoppers prefer and act on location-based ads:

While LIAs were only available to national retailers in the past, with the TAKU-Google LIA integration, even independent stores can now run

high-performing and affordable ads for all of their products. TAKU POS will handle the entire basic campaign – which means that merchants can start running products online with only a few clicks. Set your daily budget and the geographic area you wish to target and you’re set! There’s no need to manually input or upload product information to Google.

3) Free Online Product Showcase

Even if you’re not ready to buy digital ads yet, the TAKU-Google integration helps you showcase what your store sells online to shoppers. By using Google’s “See What’s In Store” feature, your in-stock products will be visible underneath your GMB listing. This feature is automatic and completely free to merchants using an integrated POS. 


Give shoppers an additional way to discover what your store sells.

Join the beta for TAKU POS today to see what it’s all about.

#googleintegration #retailpos #cloudpos #marketingintegration #posintegration #sellmore #retailmarketing #foottraffic 

What is a Retail Point of Sale System and why your Store Needs One

What is a Retail Point of Sale System and why your Store Needs One

A point of sale system is demonstrably the most important tool you can have when running a retail business. 

In fact, retail stores that invest in a strong POS system are quick to see a huge return on investment. 

A retail POS can help you save time and money by streamlining repetitive tasks, maintaining business records, and reducing human error. Even better, it can even help grow your retail business with useful data and marketing integrations.

Keep reading to find out more about how your retail business can benefit from a POS system.

What is a Retail POS?

grocery store checkout

Traditionally POS stands for “point of sale” – which refers to the place where a customer transaction occurs. Or in simpler terms, the point at which a customer hands over money in exchange for a product that they’ve purchased. 

For many retailers, this usually means the area surrounding the checkout line. For retailers who adopt cloud POS or mobile POS solutions, their whole store essentially becomes a point of sale. 

What is a Retail POS System?

pos system

To better manage in-store checkout, retail POS systems were created. The original POS systems were a combination of hardware and software that retailers used to manage their sales operations. Because POS systems are the only source of all detailed store sales, they eventually expanded to include everything from tracking customer history and taxes reports to advanced marketing and inventory management. 

Retail POS Software

Today, there are 2 main types of retail POS systems in the market: on-premise software and cloud-based subscriptions.

On-premise POS software: This type of software is installed on specific devices and usually does not rely on the Internet because the data is stored on the same devices. Because the database is stored “locally” in a specific server computer in your store, you can only access the data when you are in the store.

Cloud-based POS software: Cloud software stores data in an off-site cloud server (often hosted by a major cloud hosting service such as Google Cloud or Microsoft Azure) and is accessed via the Internet. You can compare it to writing a report on Google Docs. As long as you have an Internet connection, you can access your report from anywhere. While there may be some limitations without Internet access with cloud systems, there are major gains in remote accessibility, cost-savings and real-time data accuracy. Click here for more information on the benefits of cloud-based retail POS software

There is also a 3rd type of “hybrid” retail POS system which combines a hardwired local connection with access to data in the cloud. While this type of solution reduces the reliance on Internet, it is often a more complex system to maintain and more commonly used by larger operations. At the same time, because it is designed to allow for longer offline use, there is greater potential for issues with data quality during “synchronization” of online and offline data.

Expert Tip! It’s also important to note that offline usage and “data integrity” actually work against each other. While it is key for operations to have usable salesscreen functions (or alternative ways of processing sales) when the internet or network is down, the quality of the pooled data is lower and less accurate the more often the stations in a POS are “offline.” So if getting accurate, accessible business data from anywhere is a major priority, it’s important to consider a system which prioritizes real-time data accuracy with fast and reliable data sharing and considers offline usage for emergency scenarios only. Systems that prioritize offline capabilities over the data sharing functionality will be designed for infrequent synchronization. While this may not be a concern for certain types of businesses, the reality is that omnichannel retailers that need real-time stock quantity and even restaurants that take online orders need accurate POS data to make better operational decisions. After all, customers now expect real-time information when they intend to shop or order something. It’s another reason why smart POS is now able to automatically help merchants update correct store information or product stock levels in real-time.

cloud POS

Retail POS Hardware

POS hardware includes all of the physical components of your POS system. It is usually comprised of the following items:

1. POS terminal: This is the hardware or device (computer, laptop, desktop etc.) that the POS software runs on.

Traditional, on-premise systems have limitations when it comes to hardware. This is because most on-premise solutions can only operate on certain devices and operating systems (such as Windows or Mac). 

To use on-premise POS software, a license must be installed on each device that a merchant wishes to operate on. At the same time, licenses are often tied to the hardware they are installed on and can be difficult or costly to transfer to other devices.  

For newer, cloud-based POS software, merchants can use any device with Internet connectivity to access their data – laptops, tablets, desktops and even mobile phones. Cloud POS software does not require merchants to pay per device, rather merchants often pay per active station (or users logged in at the same time). Transferable access offers multi-channel merchants a lot more flexibility when managing store operations.  

2. Cash Drawer: A cash drawer is an important yet simple part of a retail POS system. This piece of hardware provides both security and organization to retailers. It is where cash, coins, checks and credit card receipts are stored. 

The receipt printer will send signals to the cash drawer, prompting it to open when necessary.

cash drawer

3. Barcode Scanner: Barcode scanners are an important part of most retail stores. Compared to restaurants, retailers carry a lot more inventory and need to use barcode scanners to make checkout an easier and faster process for both store employees and shoppers. Scanners use lasers to read barcode numbers unique to each SKU and enter these numbers immediately in the POS software.

While most retail POS systems should be designed specifically for barcode scanners, it is important for there to be other search methods should barcode tags get damaged or lost. Without scanners, cashiers should be able to quickly search by product codes or keyword for each item in the store.

Expert Tip! Unless a retail store has a very low number of inventory items (e.g. coffee shop), the default salesscreen mode should be designed for barcode scanners. The picture gallery touchscreen mode commonly found in tablet-based POS was traditionally designed for restaurants where the number of inventory items is very low and is generally not efficient in retail stores with more than 500 unique SKUs. While some POS providers will serve both restaurants and retailers, if the default salesscreen is designed for touchscreen picture gallery, most likely the company that developed the original software started with a restaurant POS and later retrofit it for retail.

barcode scanner

4. Receipt Printer: Once a customer pays for the items that they have purchased, cashiers will usually hand them a receipt to confirm payment. While email receipts are increasingly popular, the majority of receipts are still printed based on the data received from the POS software. 

receipts

5. Credit Card Terminal: This is the hardware that store staff use to accept debit and credit card payments. Increasingly, shoppers prefer and make the majority of their purchases with credit and debit cards. 

There are three ways that credit card terminals can accept credit or debit payments: 

1) Using chip & PIN cards: Where shoppers insert chip & PIN cards to make a purchase. This type of payment is EMV-compliant and the most secure of the 3 types.

2) Swiping card magstripes: Where shoppers swipe their cards in order to make a payment. This type of payment is not EMV compliant and opens the merchant up to chargebacks on all payments processed.

3) Near-field-communication (NFC): Where shoppers use their devices (Apple or Google Pay) or simply tap their cards to pay. This type of payment is the fastest of the 3. While tap is not as risky as magstripes (it is generally only allowed for individual payments of up to $100), in a busy store, this can be costly as the merchant is still fully liable for any chargebacks.

credit card terminal

3 Reasons Why Your Retail Store Needs a POS System

1) Faster Checkout 

checkout line

Slower checkout speed often leads to abandonment. In fact, long lines and poor checkout experience are major contributors to low shopper dissatisfaction.

Adopting a POS software that is designed for checkout speed will help speed up store operations and improve shopper satisfaction. This is especially important for busy multi-lane stores as they often deal with long line-ups.

Faster checkout is also key to increasing revenue during high season or rush periods. The longer your customers wait in line, the slower your turnover and lower your sales.

Here are some checkout features to look out for when choosing a retail POS software designed for fast checkout:

Easy navigation: Look for a software that is designed for checkout speed and minimum clicks. You shouldn’t have to leave your salescreen in order to complete a transaction.

Fast scanning speed: Retail POS software should be designed for quick barcode scanning with easy recall of your last search. Make sure that the system you’re looking at is able to handle multiple barcodes per SKU as every retail product commonly has an internal code, a shortcode, a vendor code, a manufacturer code and possibly several carton codes.

Advanced inventory search: Besides barcode scanning speed, a retail POS software designed to handle high volume inventory or a large number of transactions quickly needs to be able to have smart search functions including keyword search by description, barcode or tag should labels not be scannable, etc.

If you want more information about adopting a line busting retail POS software that is designed for checkout speed, click here

2) Increased Mobility 

POS mobility

Retail POS systems – cloud POS software in particular, provide retailers with more flexibility and mobility. As data is stored in the cloud, store owners can access their business information around the clock from anywhere – even if they are not physically in the store. They can view inventory levels, tax reports and sales data right from the comfort of home or even on vacation. Well-designed cloud POS software can also function on any device – from tablets, laptops to smartphones. 

3) The Ability to Use the POS Data for Retail Marketing 

POS data

POS data is critical to the success of any business. This is because data provides retailers with the tools to effectively manage inventory, sales, and finances.

Besides standard sales and inventory reports, modern cloud-based retail POS systems help store owners sell more using their own POS data. Because cloud POS are particularly good at integrating with other cloud solutions, real-time store data can be shared other solutions such as e-commerce platforms, shipping services or listings such as Google My Business, which help improve SEO and drive more local foot traffic to stores.


We will be posting more POS tips in the upcoming weeks. 

Subscribe to our blog to stay updated on the latest retail marketing trends, POS tips, and industry updates.  

#pointofsale #posdefination #pointofsaledefination #benefitsofpos #retail #retailstore #builtforretail #cloudpos #retailpos

Holiday Marketing: Free Halloween Stock Photos

Holiday Marketing: Free Halloween Stock Photos

The holiday season is approaching! And we know how busy this time of the year can get for retailers.
 
So to help you save time, we’ve put together a collection of royalty-free Halloween stock photos.
 
Feel free to use these images in your Halloween marketing campaigns.
 
Click here to download the images for free.
 
Happy Halloween and happy selling!

#halloween #royaltyfree #stockimages #retail #marketing #halloweenphotos 

Sell More: 3 Thanksgiving Marketing Ideas for Retailers

Sell More: 3 Thanksgiving Marketing Ideas for Retailers

Fall is fast approaching, and for Canadian retailers this means gearing up for the Thanksgiving long weekend. 

Although Canadian Thanksgiving isn’t as closely associated with shopping (compared to the U.S. holiday), retailers can still create a unique experience for shoppers. 

Keep reading to find out how you can gobble up your fair share of sales this Thanksgiving weekend. 

3 Thanksgiving Marketing Strategies to Help you Sell More

1) Have an Attitude of Gratitude 

Retail sale

Thanksgiving is the ideal occasion to express your gratitude to shoppers. At the same time, it’s an opportunity to excite them with upcoming Thanksgiving promotions and discounts. 

So thank loyal customers for their business by offering them something in return – in the form of special deals, coupons, or gifts! The following is a list of possible promotions you can run during the weekend: 

A Free Gift with Every Purchase: This promotion type encourages shoppers to make a purchase by offering more value for the same price. In order to create a sense of urgency among customers, retailers should stress that the promotion is limited and exclusive. Meaning that the gift is only offered for a certain period of time and until stock runs out. For example, think about using the words “while supplies last” or “offer valid from October 6-14” on your promotional materials. 

Percentage Discount: This is the most straight-forward and popular promotion type. Seasonal discounts help attract new customers and get rid of slow moving or seasonal stock. 

Buy One, Get One Free: Studies show that offering shoppers something for free is oftentimes more effective than a discount. You can pair high-margin items with slow moving stock. Or, you can increase the amount of items required in the promotion. For example, “Buy 3, Get 1 Free”.  The Body Shop is a retailer that frequently and effectively employs this promotion strategy. 

Once you’ve gotten your promotion strategy in place, make use of digital marketing tools to spread the word about your’s store Thanksgiving promotions. An email marketing campaign and social media are both effective tools that will help generate a buzz and increase foot traffic for your store. 

2) Thanksgiving Email Marketing

thanksgiving email marketing

Email marketing is a cost-effective way to reach shoppers and drive store sales. According to Hubspot, email generates $38 for every $1 spent

Listed below are best practices to follow for creating an email marketing campaign that converts subscribers to shoppers: 

  • Include an incentive in the subject line. Many business owners overlook the importance of email subject lines. If your email headline does not grab the attention of shoppers (even if it is drafted to perfection), it is unlikely that anyone will open it. By including an incentive in the subject line, you can improve your email open rate. An example of a compelling, incentive-driven subject line is,”35% Off Thanksgiving promotion starts tomorrow”. 

  • Get the timing right. Thanksgiving is a busy time for most shoppers. On top of that, most people are expecting a bombardment of holiday emails (Halloween, Black Friday, American Thanksgiving, Cyber-Monday etc.). That’s why retailers can expect lower than average open and click through rates in November. So it’s important to start your email marketing campaign at least a week prior to the Thanksgiving weekend. Earlier in the week is also proven to be better for email campaigns – with Monday having the highest open rate

  • Personalize the email. You can do so by including the shopper’s first name in the email or subject line. Personalized subject lines are 26% more likely to be opened

3) Give Back to Your Community

thanksgiving marketing through charity

There are many ways to give back to the community this Thanksgiving season. 

One way is to partner up with a local food bank by holding a canned food drive at your physical storefront. Not only does this showcase your store’s community support, it also helps drive foot traffic to your store. Create incentives for shoppers to donate by giving a % discount to every shopper who drops by your retail business with canned food. 

You don’t necessarily have to partner up with a food bank either. Think about teaming up with a local organization that is related to your business. For example: 

  • A pet food store could partner with an animal shelter. 

  • A women’s clothing store could team up with a domestic violence shelter in the area. 

  • Health food stores could work with local homeless shelters.  

Supporting a cause that both you and your shoppers believe in will help you build brand awareness and create new marketing opportunities for your retail business. 

Get Ready For Halloween and Black Friday

Remember, Thanksgiving sets the stage for Halloween and Black Friday – two of the biggest shopping days of the year. So it’s a great opportunity to generate a buzz and get shoppers excited for upcoming promotions and deals! 


Did you find this article helpful?

We will be posting more holiday marketing tips in the upcoming weeks. 

Subscribe to our blog to stay updated!  

#thanksgiving #marketing #ideas #holidaymarketing #retail #sellmore