24th November 2015
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Use gift guides to boost sales this Christmas

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With Christmas fast approaching, and the American import of Black Friday, you might have noticed Gift Guides popping up in marketing material – online, in newsletters, in magazines and newspapers. They’re usually a collation of gift ideas for people with specific hobbies, gender, age etc. But, just what purpose do they serve and what benefit can they do for your business? Well, there are a number of ways that you can go about this depending on what type of business you are and what your market is.

  1. Find people creating gift lists.

Lots of magazines and newspapers (in print and online) will start creating gift guides in various sections of their publication from October onwards, bloggers will start creating relevant gift guides for their target audiences and service providers may do the same in the hope that people find them through better SEO for their target audience. If you want your product to be included then you’ll need to get in touch with these people before these lists are published (although digital media can be amended, you’ll probably miss the initial surge of traffic). For this you will need to find relevant blogs and journalists that are likely to be in your market, or that have done previous gift guides for your target customers. For example, if you sell cycling merchandise you’ll likely need to target fitness bloggers, sports journalists and lifestyle publications, and people/publications that have run previous cyclist gift guides. The best tool for this – Google and Twitter. Then you need to get in touch and put your case across, you may need to be prepared to offer some sort of affiliate benefit.

Christmas gift guide for cyclists

  1. Create your own gift list.

Do you have a company blog, news feed? If not, then why – read here to find out why you should? Well, here is the perfect platform to publish your own gift guide. Remember, it should be specific, targeting a niche area. If you’re a company that sells garden supplies, it shouldn’t be “The ultimate gardening gift guide” because that would cover far too much of your stock. Something like “The vegetable gardeners’ gift guide” or “Ultimate gifts for greenhouse owners”. Then choose some quality stock to put in, and make sure you add good descriptions of the products and why they’re in the guide, this will also help to improve your SEO.

  1. Spread it on social media.

Whether it’s your gift guide or you’ve had input into someone else’s, you know the drill – share, share and share again! If the link is someone else’s then they’ll probably be expecting you to do this if you’ve requested to be included. If it’s your own, then you should always be aiming to share your own content anyway, other why bother creating it. And share with other people; send emails to relevant companies or people that may share the link for you, use relevant hashtags on Twitter, post on other Facebook pages – don’t spam, but do try to build up some reciprocal sharing action across the internet.

Don’t ignore gift guides this Christmas if you want to try to increase your eCommerce sales. It’s been proven that personalised purchase suggestions can have a really significant impact on people’s conversion rates. If you want a hand writing a gift guide then let us know: hello@webfwd.co.uk

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About the Author

Emily keeps the office organised, makes sure the clients are happy and is always in charge of the tea round. When she’s not designing websites or drinking coffee, you’ll find Emily knitting, reading or accidentally setting her Sims on fire.

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