Heat Up Your Sales this Summer with Creative In-Store Promotions

Revised 4/8/2014
As the weather gets warmer, it can be challenging to attract customers into the store. However, by marketing a compelling in-store promotion, you will encourage your customers to stop by and spend money during a specific timeframe.
Here are five store promotions that you can use to drive more traffic this month:


1.   Free gift with purchase–Whether it’s a clever inexpensively priced gift such as a plastic beach ball that ties into a summer-themed event, a votive candle, or a complimentary rose, free gifts with purchase will entice your customers to come into the store.


2.   Offer a free service, no purchase necessary–One retailer told me that she offers a free mini manicure to every customers on Monday.  She calls the in-store promotion, “Manicure Monday”.  She partners with a local nail school which sends over students who are need of training time.  She does not have to pay the students, but tips are encouraged.  In addition to leaving a tip, most customers spend at least $10 in the store before or after they receive their mini manicure.


3.   Buy One, Get One (a.k.a. “BOGO”)–A BOGO promotion can be a very effective tool to pull people into the store, particularly when you’re marketing a brand that has a loyal following in your store.  In addition to marketing this offer to your entire list, also consider marketing this offer to customers who have purchased the brand in the last six months.


4.  Customers buy now, receive discount later–A new trend that has been spreading in chain stores is a promotion that offers the customer a discount on future purchases in exchange for making a purchase today.  For example, if they spend more than $25 in the store during the promotion, they receive a 25% off coupon to redeem at a later date (2-3 weeks later).


5.  Free samples–Everyone loves something for free.  Marketing a free sample gives a reason for your customers to come into the store, and it enables them to test out the product.  While in the store, many will spend money on additional items to reciprocate the thoughtfulness of you giving them a free gift.


Get creative this month and test out a new store promotion that you have never tried, or bring one back from a previous year that was very successful.
Patricia Norins is the founder and publisher of two national trade magazines and two trade shows. Specialty Retail Report, the voice of the specialty retail industry (carts, kiosks and temporary in-line stores) has a readership of more than 75,000 and GIFT SHOP, the magazine for independent gift shop owners, has a readership of more than 80,000. She also serves as spokesperson for Small Business Saturday, a national iniative to encourage consumers to shop locally, and is an internationally renowed speaker who focuses on delivering savvy business strategies to help retailers grow their businesses effectively and inexpensively.

Seasonal Display Ideas from Around the Country

We love our retailers! And we love when they share their great pictures of their store displays. Here we share a few inspiring displays pictures that we hope spark some displays ideas for your store. And be sure to check out our link at the bottom to the OneCoast Facebook album for more display ideas.

A. Dodson’s – Suffolk, VA
Here’s a big focal display using two large pieces – buffet table and ladder. Both are great to display a variety of products and they used every bit of space from top to bottom.

Amber Marie & Co. – Oklahoma City, OK
Feel close to nature with this earthy display. Using galvanized tin containers below the table give you more space to display your products. Incorporating the mix of white, black, green and browns creates a cohesive display that is eye catching.

Christopher’s in St. Louis, MO
Got a variety of different size tray or even odd shaped trays? Instead of stacking them one on top of another, try displaying them using a wood display rack for a nice look.

Gertens Garden Center – Inver Grove Heights, MN
Here is a clever use of a wagon and bike. This retailer used both pieces to create a garden themed display.

Victoria’s Armoire – Coral Gables, FL
We love the use of the ladder to display the Mud Pie linen towels. Also take notice of their use of a variety of different tables and how they are stacked on top of one another.

Apple Store in Medina, TX
Take two rustic hutches and place them side by side to create a strong display. Featuring the Food Network candle collection from Boulevard, the white containers do pop against the displays.

White Palm – Ocean City, NJ
White is beautiful even all on it’s own. The product does stand out when incorporating a few neutral products like wood and silver.

Paper Affair – Alpharetta, GA
Got some bags? Here’s a neat idea. Stuff your bags with colorful tissue paper to help keep the shape of the bag, but also creates an amazing display that will catch the customer’s eye.

The Cottage Shop in their Duck and Nags Head locations (Outer Banks, NC)
Here are two great examples using nautical and beach products that include Mud Pie. Each display makes a statement and works well together with the mix of variety products and sizes.

Stay connected all the time with the OneCoast Facebook page! Check out your new album entitled “Our Retailer Friends” – Click Here. We truly love our retailers and we created this special album to feature their good-looking displays featuring our products. Check back often as we will add new retailer pictures from time to time.