We’re already deep in the trenches of the holiday season. If you’ve been here before, welcome back! First time? Just follow our lead and we’ll help you navigate through the chaos of running an online shop during the busiest time of the year. There’s a lot to do to ensure your holiday season is successful, from refreshing the look of your shop to strategizing promos to mapping out your social media schedule. We want to make that to-do list less daunting for you, so we brought back an updated version of our Holiday Checklist.
The strategy? Divide and conquer. We split the Holiday Checklist into four sections in order of priority: 5 Things You Have to Do, 5 Things You Should Do, 5 Things You Could Do, and 5 Things to Drive Traffic. This allows you to concentrate on the most essential stuff first before moving on to smaller, but still important tasks.
Once you’re finished reading this post, download the desktop-friendly PDF version of the Holiday Checklist and keep it handy as a guide throughout the holiday season.
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1. Tell everyone about FREE SHIPPING. ✅
Through December 14, 2021, your customers get free US shipping and $10 flat-rate international shipping for all orders over $99. Don’t keep it a secret! Free shipping can be the difference between a sale and an abandoned cart.
2. Plan promotions and sales in advance. ✅
By now, you should know which of your products you want to go on sale and when. If you don’t have a game plan for the holidays yet, no need to panic! Opt into Managed Pricing and we’ll automatically run sales and promotions in your shop for you. Our team of marketing professionals has already planned holiday sales that’ll excite shoppers looking for a good deal.
3. Update your product lineup. ✅
Regular T-Shirts are the top-selling product across Artist Shops, so it’s always a good idea to promote them as giftable items. But don’t forget about the other stuff shoppers typically look for every holiday season. We’re talkin’ Hoodies, Blankets, and affordable stocking stuffers, such as Mugs, Stickers, Buttons, and Zip Pouches.
4. Schedule promotional social media posts. ✅
The more scheduling you do in advance, the more time you can spend actually enjoying the holidays instead of staying glued to social media. Create promotional images, write out captions about gifting and shopping early, and build out your calendar.
5. Tell your customers about holiday shipping deadlines. ✅
Global supply chains are still impacted by the pandemic, causing shipping delays worldwide. Your customers must shop early—like, right now—if they expect to receive their orders in time for the holidays. Share the shipping deadlines below with your customers so they know when the last possible day is to place an order for the holidays.
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1. Add Threadless Causes designs. ✅
With Threadless Causes, you can donate a portion of your earnings from the sale of any design you select in your Artist Shop. Choose which Causes and charities to support, and what percentage you’d like to donate. This is your opportunity to make a difference with your art during the holidays! That’s what the Season of Giving is all about.
2. Switch up your shop banner. ✅
It’s one of the first things your visitors see when they visit your homepage. A festive, holiday-themed banner will make your shop look like the perfect spot to find a gift. Plus, you can use it to share information about free shipping and promos.
3. Set up your About page. ✅
Your About page lets you tell your story and connect with your audience on a human level. It also allows Google to index your site and make it easier for customers to find you. Incorporate SEO-friendly keywords and add links to your website and social media pages, where visitors will see your promotional posts.
4. Create a Gift Guide Collection. ✅
The Collections feature in your Artist Dashboard lets you create a unique landing page in your shop for designs and products that share a common theme. Build a general holiday collection, or use this feature to make gift guides that’ll help your customers find what they need quicker. Themes you might consider: “Secret Santa Gifts,” “Gifts for Creatives,” “Stocking Stuffers,” etc.
5. Post shop updates on social media. ✅
Every time you add a new design or product to your Artist Shop, you have yet another opportunity to share exciting news with your followers. Using the Shop Update feature, you can easily set up a Facebook status or tweet without ever leaving your Artist Dashboard. Keeping your fans in the loop is critical, especially during the holidays!
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1. Order product samples from your shop. ✅
Did you know you can purchase product samples from your own shop for just the base cost? Order items that are most relevant to the holiday season and take pictures of them so you can…
2. Snap holiday-centric lifestyle photos. ✅
Use those samples you ordered to shoot lifestyle photography with seasonal gift-giving vibes. Lifestyle photos help your customers envision your products as gifts. Plus, you can get many uses out of them! Feature them in your homepage collection and email newsletter, and post them on social media.
3. Create an interactive social media post. ✅
Likes, comments, and reshares on social media can help you reach a wider audience and learn more about what your followers like about your products. A fun, easy way to drive engagement is putting up a poll. Post a holiday-related question like “How soon is it okay to listen to Christmas music?” or “Is Die Hard a Christmas movie?”
4. Send an email newsletter. ✅
One of the many perks of Artist Shops is that you get access to your customers’ emails. Send them email newsletters with gift guides, details about your promos, previews of upcoming designs you’re going to add, and more!
5. Add a limited-time design. ✅
This is a great way of building urgency. Take to social media and let your followers know that once the holidays are over, your limited-time designs will POOF—disappear forever. (Or at least until next year.)
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1. Add new designs as often as possible. ✅
If you make it into the Threadless Marketplace and regularly add new designs to your Artist Shop, you’ll boost your visibility in Threadless search queries filtered by “New.” This will also increase the likelihood of new customers discovering your shop!
2. Launch a Facebook ad campaign. ✅
It doesn’t hurt to reinvest a little cash into your Artist Shop to get more eyeballs on your products during the holiday season. And you might be surprised to know that a little goes a long way with Facebook and Instagram ads. Even just $5.
3. Run a social-media giveaway. ✅
People. Love. Free. Stuff. Social-media giveaways are a great way to capture your audience’s attention and gain new followers. If you’re looking for the right prize, start with the product samples we suggested ordering earlier. OR, you can send the winner a promo code. Periodically, we email select shop owners promo codes that we recommend using for this purpose. Check your inbox. We might have already sent one to you!
4. Share works-in-progress. ✅
Nobody wants to see how the sausage gets made. Unless the “sausage” is your art. In that case, yes, we all want to see. Share sketches or time-lapse videos of you making your designs. Then, direct your followers to your Artist Shop to reveal the final product(s). Need an example? Watch these awesome videos created by TikToker and shop owner Ink Tuesday.
5. Reach out to an influencer. ✅
If you can get an Instagram influencer, TikToker, or blogger to talk about your products, you have an opportunity to tap into a larger audience that may be unfamiliar with your work. It may be tough to actually secure an influencer during this busy time of year, but it’s worth a shot! Here are some tips on reaching out.
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