School’s Back In Session: It’s Time For A #Retail Refresh

retail-refreshThe summer’s winding down and parents everywhere are on the hunt for the best deals on back-to-school shopping. You know what that means: Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas are right around the corner. Back-to-school is the perfect time for small businesses to get a jump-start on their holiday marketing – especially when 15% of consumers start their holiday shopping as early as July.

Here are some ways you can get an A+ on your back-to-school marketing:

Don’t miss the first day of school. As you’re reading this, your customers have already started shopping. In fact, according to Google Trends, “search interest started trending up a week earlier than last year and a whole three weeks earlier than 2013.” Make sure your online properties – your website, Google My Business listing, and social media profiles – are updated to showcase what you have to offer.

Do your homework. Remember when you had to do summer reading homework to prepare for the first day of school? As a small business owner, your summer assignment is to study what your customers are searching for on Google Trends. This will help you stock and advertise your products accordingly – and even help you get ahead of the curve for the holiday season. For example, according to Google Shopping Data search results, combat boots are out and Disney Vans are in. 

Use the right tools to make the grade. With mobile searches related to “back to school shopping” already up to 50% this year, compared to 40% in 2014, the power of mobile for retail is clear. Our latest survey reveals that “more than half of back-to-school apparel shoppers use a smartphone while shopping to get price comparisons, inventory availability, or directions.” Additionally, during our Local Meets Mobile Hangout, we learned that four in five customers want search ads to be customized to their local surroundings.

For more on retail marketing, check out this video with our highlights from our interviews with Etsy, Square, and Shopify. Further, throughout the month of August, we’re doing a #Retail Refresh in the Google Small Business Community to help you prepare for the upcoming shopping holidays, starting with the back-to-school season.