Your Holiday-Selling Crash Course: 10 Tips to Increase Sales and Get Prepared



We’re still in the month of October, but the time to get started selling your wares during the holidays is now! For years I’ve hosted last-minute holiday sales locally to great success and learned a lot along the way. Check out my 10 tips to increase sales and get prepared for selling this holiday season.

1. Get Started Now! Not Later, Not Tomorrow, Right Now.

Most businesses are preparing for holidays sales by summer at the latest. You still have time, but the operative time is this moment! As soon as you finish reading this article, that is!

2. Stock Up on Your Merchandise Today.

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Get new items photographed and ready to go for your online shop. (Check out my DIY backdrop.)

3. Do Something Fresh for Your Christmas Photography

I added some details to my new shots for Christmas that created a lot of interest, like tinsel and little Christmas trees. The extra effort only cost me $3 to 4 with objects from the Dollar Store and it was a great investment, resulting in an increase in sales. Think of something creative to make yourself stand out.

4. Conduct a Black Friday Sale.


Your Black Friday sale will be the best time to promote new items with the fresh shots. Make the discount enticing, and do a teaser at least a day or two before your sale to generate anticipation and interest.

5. Be Prepared with Gift-Wrapping and Packing Materials.

Extra sales mean extra packaging and shipping! Have your boxes, tissue paper, bags and everything else you need ready before any big sales, and before December in general. Have it organized so packing is a breeze.

6. Use Social Media to Your Advantage.


Social media sales are going to rise exponentially after Black Friday, so keep posting reminders about your new items, your Christmas sales and gift ideas. If you have a blog, write posts on how to use your items. Promote your items on Krrb and other independent business platforms.

7. Host a Giveaway.

Hosting a giveaway on a bigger blog or social media platform is a great way to get exposure for your shop’s gift ideas around Christmas time. Start e-mailing people today and see what happens. The worst they can do is say “no.”

8. Work Smarter, Not Harder and Find Short-Cuts.

Preparing for the holiday season—and then the holiday season itself—is a go-go-go busy time! There tends to be little room for mishaps and the time it takes to find solutions. For instance, my outdated image software was killing me when it came to uploading new items to my online shop. Luckily, I was able to speed up the process with Photoshop Elements, a program that automatically applies multiple edits to multiple images at once and frees up hours and hours of time. It resulted in having more beautiful images that were up more quickly than before, which customers loved. If you’re a small business whose Achilles’ heel is fast shipping, perhaps look into one of the many shipping-help services to help you save time and energy.

9. If Possible, Throw in Some Impulsive “Smalls” with Every Purchase.


Even if you’re a vintage seller, consider customizing small postcards, printed mirrors, or pens. Including something small and branded that people can regift during the holiday season is a great way to get your name out there!

10. It’s Not Too Late to Make Money from Christmas Shoppers.


There was one year when I spent the first half of Thanksgiving Day frantically taking product photos for a Black Friday sale that did pay off in big sales the following day. Don’t procrastinate. Do what I recommended in Step 1 and get prepared. However, don’t let it discourage you if you haven’t started yet and feel overwhelmed. If I did it in half a day, you can do it in 6 to 7 weeks!

Vanessa's blog, Vanessa Alvarado, provides goods and guides for a healthy, creative life outside of the status quo. Online and in person, she puts her eclectic mod-loving soul to work curating mid century modern, kitsch and retro wares for the people who love them.