5 Copywriting Tips for Holiday Promotions and Sales

Temperatures are dropping.

Leaves have fallen from the trees.

Family and friends are finalizing flights and holiday travel plans.

People are dusting off basement boxes labeled “holiday decorations.”

Yes, the winter holidays are right around the corner, and everyone’s preparing to celebrate.

…and if you’re a business owner, it’s the perfect opportunity to reach or exceed your sales goals.

Ideally, you should have completed your holiday plans early fall.

But, as is the case with many companies, it’s not uncommon to get a late start on the holiday promotions.

No shame in that–no one’s perfect. And better late than never, right?

If you’re behind and desperate to kick it into gear now before the holidays come and go, keep the following five tips in mind when crafting your holiday sales copy and promotional messaging…

#1: Understand your audience.

You’ll find that your customers will be more eager to investigate what you have to offer if you speak their language.

In addition to ensuring that the tone and verbiage used is in line with how your demographic communicates, it’s also important to keep in mind that the winter holidays can mean a lot of things to a variety of people.

From Christmas to Hanukkah, take into consideration which holidays your target demographic celebrates and how they celebrate them–if at all.

For example, if your customer base was made up of artistic hipsters in their 20s and 30s living in New York, San Francisco, and Los Angeles, you probably want to avoid religious overtones in your marketing copy.  

This is why it’s important to utilize your customer avatar to determine how your customer thinks about and sees the holiday shopping experience.

#2: Use actionable words and phrases.

A large part of effective sales writing comes down to psychology and the power of suggestion.

Aim to use a variety of action words and phrases to propel your customers forward to the point of purchase.

From “act now” to “make your purchase today,” your copy can help overwhelmed prospective customers feel encouraged to make decisions.

They may even consciously or subconsciously appreciate this “nudge” during a stressful and rushed online shopping process.

If you need examples of a few great action words, take a look at the list below…

  • Create
  • Discover
  • Compare
  • Hurry
  • Improve
  • Trust
  • Learn
  • Understand

Whether shopping for Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, or beyond, your prospective customers may need that extra bit of encouragement and “hints” to take action.

#3: Create a sense of urgency.

“Hmm, maybe I’ll come back later” versus “Oh, I better buy this now.”

One customer thought process gives business owners anxiety, and the other induces feelings of victory.

If you want your customer to jump to the latter conclusion (feelings of victory!), then you’ll need to create a sense of urgency.

Don’t hesitate to let your prospective customers know that this sale won’t last forever or that you have limited stock.

Make them feel like now is their one chance to claim the value that you’re offering them.

One effective way to get this message across is to add an exit pop-up specifically designed for your holiday promotion period.

Checkout Boost is one such app that you can use to create an exit pop-up. See the screenshot below as an example of Checkout Boost in action.

Give your prospective customers a reason to buy now–not later. “Later” could very well mean “never.”

#4: Make your content scannable.


With so much noise and so little time, shoppers are often overwhelmed when making their gift selections online.

That’s why less is often more.

Aim to use short, clear, and concise language to communicate the features and benefits of your product or service.

The goal is to make it easy for your prospective customer to scan everything from the content on your landing page to your product descriptions and know the value immediately.

In the example above, ModCloth’s product description is short and sweet, with only two sentences of text and skimmable bullet points under the product details section.

If you notice that your product descriptions are blocks upon blocks of text, it may be time to make a change.

#5: Call Out Popular Gift Benefits.


Got free shipping? Easy assembly? One-size-fits-all?

Buying gifts for others can be tricky, so it’s important to make it as seamless as possible for your customer to receive the order, feel confident giving it to others, and return it if needed.

Make these advantages known and don’t wait until the end of your email or landing page to call it out.

Whether this info is featured front and center, bolded, or in a larger font, do what you need to do so that you don’t risk your prospective customers missing out on these details.

Find this article helpful? Check out more tips on how to create a customer avatar.


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