It often feels like autumn is a soft whisper that mingles with the sounds of summer's end until warm summer breezes eventually give way to fall's brisk wind. Temperatures drop slowly, perhaps rise again slightly, then plummet to the depths of winter. However, there's always a weekend or two during autumn where the weather is just right: sunny enough to be outside during the day and cool enough to sleep comfortably.
Once your back-to-school sales and promotions end, it will be time to embrace and prepare your store racks for the rest of the season. These ideas could be just what your store needs for the stretch of time between summer deals and holiday specials.
Although football season begins during the summer and ends in late January, autumn is the main time to celebrate this classic American sport. You don't need to be based in a town that goes crazy for football or even a state that boasts a competitor to run these promotions so they can be applied to any region.
One way to offer discounts is by randomly assigning deals to NFL teams. Shoppers can pick from the teams and receive the associated sale. It might get a little out of hand if you try to use all 32 NFL teams, so you can mix-and-match based on preference. You can promote local and neighboring teams, decide what discounts you want to run and match the two. For example, you could sell New England Patriots gear for 30 percent off, or offer New York Jets fans a buy-one-get-one-free.
If that doesn't appeal to you, consider running a weekly deal based on one of the big games going on. At checkout, ask each customer if he or she wants to predict which team will win the next weekend. You can keep track of responses in a notebook or on a spreadsheet if there is a computer nearby. Once the game airs, shoppers who guessed right can receive a special discount.
FALLing in love sale
It may seem corny to launch a promotion that uses the season's name as a play on words, but the benefit comes from the title's memorable phrasing. While many stores tie the word "fall" into the premise of dropping prices, this is a bit more unique. The idea is that you feature an item for discount, either on a weekly or monthly basis. Each time a new item goes on sale, your company can promote it as the "FALLing in love with [product] sale." Using social media, word-of-mouth and cross-promotion with related local businesses can help raise awareness of the featured deal. Showcase the chosen item with display fixtures placed in a central location.
A colorful deal
Because autumn is traditionally a season of changing colors, you can incorporate the classic hues into a promotional sale. The bright shades of fall foliage inspire photography, painting and tourism as people seek out the transitioning leaves. One way to use the attraction to foliage to your advantage is by running a sale based on the color of your merchandise. After choosing a shade to focus on each month, you can mark down all of the products that are available in that hue. Perhaps the three main colors associated with changing leaves are red, yellow and orange, but you can expand the palette as you see fit.
You can also use the colors in a different way. Consider buying sale stickers in fall foliage shades and run a sale by marking down whatever you wish.