Retailers: Here are 5 Ideas to Boost Back-to-School Sales


Consumer data indicate a solid back-to-school retail season this year. Still, marketing experts advise small businesses to use discounts and other promotional tactics to attract shoppers looking to save money.


The back-to-school season is one of the most significant retail moments of the year, with 65 percent of the general population intending to shop during this time, reports a study by the creator-guided shopping platform LTK. 


"And despite economic concerns, 81 percent of shoppers plan to spend the same or more as last year with purchase decisions driven by price and quality,” says the study, according to a Yahoo Finance article.


Here are five ideas for boosting your back-to-school sales as consumers shop for the upcoming elementary, high school, and college academic year.


Offer discounts

A seemingly “per usual” piece of advice, but it’s particularly relevant this year as higher prices influence how U.S. households shop their back-to-school lists.


Offering promotions and discounts is more critical than ever, explains a post by Adadapted, a digital engagement and insights platform for CPG brands and agencies.


“Brands can appeal to cost-conscious consumers by highlighting the value of their products, emphasizing the long-term savings that come with choosing high-quality items that last longer and require fewer replacements.“  


Build omnichannel experience

Back-to-school consumers will check and shop a variety of   

channels looking for the best deals, so cross all touchpoints with your marketing, whether you're selling e-commerce, brick-and-mortar, or a third-party marketplace.


An omnichannel marketing approach is designed to deliver a seamless and consistent customer experience across channels, including physical stores, websites, email, social and mobile—anywhere a brand is present, explains a Sproutsocial article.


“Delivering relevant content consistently across channels can drive emotional bonds that keep customers coming back, even when faced with alternatives,” says the blog by Ronnie Gomez.


This type of strategy helps you build trust with customers for high quality, and “that trust encourages customers to return and spread the word, bolstering your brand reputation.”


A Q1 2023 SproutSocial pulse survey showed that more than two-thirds (77%) of customers are more likely to increase their spending with brands they feel connected to.


Toward this strategy — which requires consistency — small businesses will need reliable business internet to deliver seamless connectivity across channels and their POS systems during this back-to-school season.


Use shoppable videos

Small businesses have an excellent opportunity to connect with consumers through shoppable videos.


“Shoppable video combines the power of video advertising with the convenience of online shopping, allowing consumers to purchase products seamlessly without ever leaving the video,” explains the post by Adadapted. 


Recent research shows that 40 percent of digital buyers exposed to video ads engaged with the ads, highlighting the effectiveness of shoppable video as a marketing tool, the blog said.


Intent-based marketing

 This hyper-focused marketing approach leverages customers' intent data signals to create customized experiences — to build targeted messages and encourage buyers when they are most likely to make a purchase decision.


Targeted ads are an example of intent-based marketing, which produces higher conversions than demographic-based targeting alone.


Partner in the community. Consider partnering with an organization or other local business for a back-to-school event or a cross-brand promotion.


For example, by sponsoring a school or other community initiative, you'll draw attention to your business and your back-to-school deals.

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