The holiday season creates a buzz in retail like no other. Most stores add some decorative flair that brightens up the environment; more traffic means higher levels of energy for the sales teams; and customers are (generally) in good spirits. The stores feel different, which means retail and corporate leaders have permission to change things up a bit—like adding a bit of cheer! You probably already have your run-of-the-mill bonus incentives for hitting monthly or quarterly sales goals, but you can use the extra volume to drive even greater results during holiday shopping.

The Retail Leader Mindset

You know the holiday season isn’t the time to make significant changes to your store. You want to ensure your retail team is set up for success and is laser-focused on the customers who are coming through the doors. Coaching can reinforce this focus, but you’re always looking for other ways to keep your team engaged.

The Corporate Mindset

You know this is the busiest season of the year and you know the best retail support means anticipating the stores’ needs. The better you anticipate, the smoother they will run. That said, you also want them to have a little fun and avoid burnout—after all, when the holiday season ends, the stores still need to be operational.

Bring on the cheer

There will always be some employees who enjoy the holiday season more than others, but giving the retail teams permission to have a little fun can go a long way—for them and for customers. To spread some cheer, here are a few incentives to try:

  • Incentivise the quantitative. A little now can go a long way. For sales goals, instead of incentivizing your team by month, set weekly goals. Create individual productivity goals, such as sales per hour, then announce a weekly winner to the team. If you know that you have a big weekend or even a big sales day coming up, add an AOV or daily sales goal (or other quantitative metrics of your choice). Whether you choose to set team goals, individual goals, or both, your approach will become a point of conversation and excitement for your employees, which drives better in-store results.
  • Incentivise the qualitative. Higher traffic and higher sales mean more customers are experiencing your brand—some of them for the first time. With this in mind, you should balance sales-focused initiatives with customer-experience focused ones. These are admittedly more difficult to measure so get your team involved to mitigate subjectivity. You can implement a weekly “customer focus” award and have team members vote on the peer they believe went above and beyond for a customer that week. Or, create a bingo card with behaviors you want to reinforce: Find a customer with the same name as you or Gift wrap five items in one day. Team members will sign-off on each other’s behaviors, which will also help reinforce excellent service as they observe each other interacting with customers.
  • Foster (friendly) competition. Any of the above initiatives can be shared across individual stores so they can implement the same initiatives. But sometimes a little (friendly, of course) store-to-store competition can create the most excitement—especially when bragging rights are on the line. Stores can compete on sales goals, the highest UPT for a given period, or the highest customer satisfaction rating—if you can measure it, you can use it! Much like with the bingo idea mentioned above, as stores share results, they will also share best practices, which will benefit all locations and could lead to long-term mentoring relationships amongst retail leaders.

There’s always something you can do to increase your Double//Vision.