How Builders’ Merchants Can Boost Winter Sales

With a few smart marketing tactics, you can boost your sales and beat your expectations for this winter.

05th December 2017

Shorter days and cold weather put DIY projects on hold, and even trade custom can drop as work is delayed by wintry weather.  You’ll know from experience (and your retail management software) that trade can take dips during winter, and you probably make adjustments in staffing levels, stock management, and opening hours accordingly.

 

Targeting trade

You probably stock a whole range of lighting solutions for building sites, such as LED site lights and headtorches, as well as gear for dealing with snow, frost and ice like shovels, tarpaulin, and heaters.

 

If you send out marketing emails to trade customers, be sure to promote these products heavily just before winter. Increase revenue by offering multi-buy deals instead of discounts on single products.

 

Remember that marketing is most effective when you identify a problem that your customers have and provide a solution. Frame these sales in terms of the time savings and safety benefits the products provide, instead of just the monetary savings themselves.

 

DIY customers

Winter home and garden maintenance is the key to unlocking DIY trade in the winter months. Gutter cleaning, draught proofing and roof repair are just some of the tasks your products could help with. If you have a website and/or social media channels, use these to explain how to complete these key home maintenance tasks and recommend the tools to do so.

 

Be ready for cold weather

Draft a series of sales-oriented social media posts about products like rock salt, de-icer, and fuel. Include photos of the product and, if possible, short clips of them in use. Publish these posts as soon as a cold snap looks imminent, so that you grab the attention of potential customers just at the right moment.

 

Show some Christmas spirit

You may not have huge Christmas sales like other shops, but builders’ merchants can get into the Christmas spirit in many other ways. You could build a partnership with a local charity and hold fundraising events, or hold a raffle to raise money for them. Make a big donation to the local food bank or homeless shelter, or simply give away products to your most valued customers.

 

Learn from last winter

Every builders merchants customer base is unique, so there’s no guarantee that all of these winter sales tactics will work for you. The best source of information is undoubtedly your own sales data from previous winters. Look back through the archives to discover which discounts achieved their objectives, and which failed to. Find out which products you ran out of at critical times, and stock up on them this year. Of course, buying patterns will change - but last year’s figures are a strong starting point.

 

Summary

During winter, freshening up your marketing strategy can help you offset some of those inevitable seasonal lows. With the help of your retail management software, you can tailor your marketing communications and discounts to help you maximise sales and achieve your objectives.

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