How to sell seasonal goods in "off-season"

The activities of many types of business vary greatly within a year. This phenomenon is called "seasonality", and it has many reasons:
  • In summer, the turnover of trade in non-food goods often falls to a minimum, and in winter (especially closer to the New Year) - increase to fantastic rates.
  • In the tourism business, large sales fall on the period of summer and winter holidays, and for the rest of the time, companies have to be satisfied with the minimum number of customers.
There are a lot of such nuances! As a result, traffic is distributed unevenly. In "quiet" periods, websites are almost not visited, and this is not good, because a simple one costs too much for modern business.
How to be? What Internet marketing tools are used to make the business live and develop out of season?

Case number 1. Internet shop of winter clothes with outlets

The client's business is selling thermal underwear for men, women and children (including newborns), as well as hats and scarves. The material of production is merino wool. The store works with warm things that perfectly protect against the winter cold, but are practically useless in the summer.

Buyers begin to show activity in August. The peak is in December and January, and by February, the decline begins. The store depends not only on the season, but also on specific weather conditions. For example, January 2017 was quite warm, which reduced sales by about 30%.
How to cope with the problem? It is recommended to use substitute products. Instead of exclusively winter clothes, you can focus on things for sports. This direction is also relevant in the summer, so that it will be possible to attract the audience and not lose sales.

Specialists of Webcom Group held the following events:

Search campaigns for conversion keywords. A sufficient amount of statistical information is collected, so that you can determine the necessary keywords. If there is no demand, you will not have to spend anything.
Remarketing and retargeting. Particular attention is given to those customers that were interested in products, but did not buy it. We offer summer goods to those who bought in the winter. Those who bought goods for newborns are advertising options for grown up children.
Social networks. We communicate with the target audience, we study the brand, we increase the involvement of users.

Case number 2. A customer's case that sells seasonal demand products (building materials)

The company's products have a pronounced seasonal demand. For example, bicycles usually buy in the spring and summer, and sleds - in the winter, with building materials the same story. The greatest activity of visitors is observed from May to October-November.
To attract customers outside of the season you need to start on the trick. For example, offer a discount when buying construction materials in the winter. This is much more profitable than just keeping them in stock. You can introduce additional services associated with the seasonal goods - storage of construction materials and other items in the winter.
Excellent effect demonstrates the offer to buy the goods now, and pick it up from the warehouse later. Advertising with such offers helps attract more users out of season. The increase in the number of conversions from contextual advertising containing such an offer off-season amounted to 28%. Competitors saving on advertising, and our client received a thoughtful strategy and effectively prepared for the new season.
Another effective method is to offer a discount for a large purchase. The action can be called "Buy a gift to a friend" or "Buy for future use". With the right approach, this method helps sell large lots.

Case number 3. Online store of large sports equipment

In summer, these customers experience a traditional decline. At this time it is recommended to work out an image for creating deferred demand. Excellent results demonstrate the increase in traffic to the site, in groups and social networks, so that during the season, effectively convert visitors to buyers.
In the "quiet" period, our employees promote the site for information requests, form the need and translate the audience into customers.
The period of active demand for such companies is observed from October to April. Before you - the statistics of fluctuations in the demand for goods:
Thanks to the actions of specialists Webcom Group managed to smooth them quickly:

What methods did we use?

They left exclusively marginal directions and selling keys.

  • Do not forget about the wholesale direction, because even one large purchase can bring huge profits.
  • They attracted subscribers in social networks. Time off-season is great for increasing brand loyalty and recognition.
  • Used near-mathematical queries. It is important to offer users an alternative. For example, in August, the demand for gyms is growing. You can give potential customers an alternative - the opportunity to effectively engage at home. Have paid attention to consumers who are fond of proper nutrition.
  • Place ads alongside product reviews. The consumer reads the review and is interested in the goods. A nearby ad makes it possible to buy the desired item in a short time.

Case number 4. Customer from the service sector

The sphere of services is also seasonal. For example, according to statistics, the popularity of educational services is reduced during the New Year and Christmas holidays, as well as during summer holidays.

We managed to stay active by using the following methods:

  • Tools for returning the audience. Excellent results are demonstrated by the offer of additional services.
  • Expansion of the audience. You need to find a new audience, similar to your customers. Thanks to this, it will be possible to expand the boundaries and increase the brand recognition.
  • Remarketing on the customer base. Improves sales, increases loyalty.
  • Studying books, webinars and seminars. You can place ads in places that provide information about the field of activity.
  • Work with social networks. Expanding coverage, attracting a new audience to the group. Attracted through sotsseti people in the future will become active buyers.

Tips for surviving out of season

  • We need to think wider!
"Quiet" time is suitable for bringing to the market related goods, expanding the range, selling related products. Perhaps it's worth to dilute the catalog with something unusual? Customers are looking for relevant products and services. For example, if your specialty is making business cards, in winter you can offer customers a print of calendars. Do you sell paving slabs? Offer her a good discount in the winter! Many customers will want to redeem the stock at a reduced price. To "hook" the buyer, offer him the services of storing the goods until the right time.
  • Use discounts and promotions.
In the off-season period, "price wars" are usually exacerbated. However, many make mistakes, believing that the only way to influence the customer is to reduce prices. In fact, a low price does not always make an impression. It is better to add creativity to attract attention to goods and services. Just do not overdo it!
  • Focus on the most effective tools.
Perhaps you should temporarily use only contextual advertising of Yandex and Google? Focus on statistics. How much money is spent on this or that instrument? What effect can you get? In the "dead" season is better to abandon tools with a high cost of clicks and low conversion. It is better to choose other channels and tools to attract.
  • Improve your content.
In addition to textual information, you can post videos, as much as possible illustrations, reviews. Feedback from real clients demonstrates tremendous effect and contributes to a positive perception of your proposals.
  • Work on the site.
Delete outdated items from the catalog, update the offer. Prices must correspond to reality, otherwise users will start to give negative feedback. Engage in texts. Let them answer the questions of potential customers. Describe the benefits of the goods and the benefits that the user will receive from their purchase. Update your photos and other graphic elements. Particular attention should be given to pictures of goods. The more they are, the better!
There should be current events, news and special offers. If a visitor sees that the latest news is dated to 1998, he hardly wants to buy anything from you.
  • Develop an information section.
Add a section with articles to the resource. This helps to promote the positions in the issuance of "Yandex" and Google. In articles you can place links to the catalog of goods, which will increase the probability of buying.
  • Work with groups on social networks.
In the "dead" season, you can increase the number of subscribers and keep in touch with the existing customer base. Pay attention to VKontakte, Facebook, Classmates, Instagram. This will not only attract new customers, but also help to better understand what is needed already available.
  • Attract an audience that was interested in the product in the season, but did not buy it.
Customers who visited your site, looked at the goods, but did not buy them, the "hot" audience. Make such visitors an offer they can not refuse!


Time off-season is great for a creative. Include fantasy, work with the client base, put in order channels of communication with consumers. By following these rules, you will make the "quiet" season active!
The material was prepared under the direction of Natalia Verkeeva, Deputy Head of the Content Advertising Department of the Webcom Group® of Companies.