Halloween isn’t thought of as a “major sales holiday”. But you might be surprised...
Just take a look at these stats:[*]
Halloween spending in the U.S. reached a record-breaking $9.1 billion in 2017 (up from $8.4 billion in 2016) — and it will match or surpass that in 2018.
Consumers spend $3.2 billion on costumes and $2.7 billion on decorations.
The average household spent $86.13 on Halloween in 2017.
11% of pet owners plan to dress their animal up as a pumpkin. (Yes, a pumpkin.)
In today’s guide, I’m going to show you how to capitalize on the growing ecommerce Halloween market with seven Halloween marketing tactics.
If you have a physical store, it makes sense to put up Halloween decorations to “get in the spirit.” But chances are, if you’re reading this, you’re in ecommerce and only have a digital property.
That doesn’t mean you can’t decorate!
Adding some fun Halloween touches to your online store can put your customers in the mood and show that you’re a fun-loving brand.
Note: This tactic isn’t backed by data — it’s just a fun way to get into the holiday spirit!
Here are some design tips you can implement without hiring a developer:
Create Halloween banners using Canva to show off your special Halloween products & bundles (more on that in tactic #5).
Hire a designer from Fiverr to create a Halloween-themed version of your store’s logo.[*]
Use spooky font pairings, like Creepster and Open Sans or Eater and Roboto Light.
Better yet, use some simple code to add a Halloween flare to your logo whenever someone hovers over it! (See example below.)[*]
Want to add some Halloween animations to your logo (like the example above)? Go to this link, and then copy and paste the CSS to your stylesheet.
After you’ve done that, include the following class name on your logo link or logo container to add the animation:
<a class="halloween-animation" href= "#"> <img src="yourcompanylogo.svg" alt="Company logo" > </a>
Easy, right? Now you’re in the spirit! Next, let’s get into some real Halloween marketing tactics.
The phrase “Halloween crafts” gets over 100,000 searches per year, with a third of those searches happening in September and the other two thirds happening in October (according to Ahrefs).
Note: It says 11k per month because they divide the total number of searches throughout the year by 12 to come up with a monthly figure. But if you look at the trends graph (in green on the left) you see almost all the searches are from September and October.
And that isn’t even including the people who search for “Halloween crafts” on YouTube and Pinterest, or the people searching other keywords like “DIY Halloween crafts” or “Halloween DIY crafts”, etc.
In other words, people LOVE crafts. And you can capitalize on that fact.
How? By building your own Halloween crafts (preferably using your own products in some way), then creating blog posts and/or videos with step-by-step instructions.
For example, Martha Stewart created this blog post to teach people how to make cool floating ghosts, and in the “materials” section she recommends her own products.[*]
Pro tip: Want to make a little extra cash from this project? Set up an Amazon Affiliate account and include affiliate links for any products you don’t personally sell, but people can buy on Amazon.[*]
In addition to an article or video, you can create a printable worksheet with the steps to help your readers do everything without needing their computer or phone. (This works as a great content upgrade to capture visitors' email address.)
Once you’ve made your craft guides, don’t forget to:
Send it to your email list (with a Halloween-themed email template, of course).
Share it on social media 2-4 times leading up to Halloween (starting in September).
Consider spending some money on ads to get it in front of more eyeballs.
That’s all there is to it! This marketing tactic is a bit more involved than the others, but it’s worth the extra effort.
Halloween discounts are a no-brainer. Of course you’ll want to create some sales to go with the holiday (complete with a discount popup, of course).
But if you really want to capitalize on the spooky fun, you need freebies.
For example, you could offer some free Halloween-themed products using a popup like this one:
Some ways I would improve on this particular offer:
There are some minor grammar issues. Always check for spelling and grammar.
Shorten the big white text. “Get a FREE Halloween Gift!” would be better.
Make the image bigger and remove the white space beneath it.
In this example, they use the free gift offer as an exit-intent popup deal to reduce abandoned carts. Pretty smart!
Don’t have any Halloween-themed products yet? Move on to tactic #4...
When it comes to Halloween marketing, you need some Halloween-themed products. Chances are, you don’t have any right now.
So what should you do?
Well, the answer depends on your industry. If you sell home decor, for example, adding some spooky products is pretty easy.
But what if you sell something that has nothing to do with Halloween — like, say, urban plant growing kits or truck parts?
Then it’s time to get creative. I can’t really help you there. I can give you a few seed ideas, though:
Dropship decor or clothing products — like pillows, wall art or t-shirts — using a service such as Printful or Printify. This is low-risk and easy to do.
Sell unique costumes that relate to your business somehow. (Like zombie plant costumes for an urban plants business.)
Create Halloween versions of your current products, such as Halloween labels or items shaped like pumpkins, ghosts, etc.
Add trick or treat bags, pumpkin carving stencils, or Halloween vehicle stickers with your logo on them.
If you’re not into the whole Halloween products idea, you can create special holiday bundles. Even if the products in the bundle aren’t related to Halloween, you can still create a Halloween sale around them to attract more business.
Not sure what products to bundle? Here are two methods:
Create a bundle that makes sense. Accessories that go with a main product, or refills for something consumable.
Put together your best sellers. Check your analytics to see your top 2-5 best-selling products and put them all in one package.
Better yet, bundle new Halloween packages with your existing products to get the best possible average order value —a win-win.
To tie it in with Halloween, use fun wording like “Don’t be scared you'll run out of X” or “Don’t be left in the dark this Halloween — get our new spooky product bundles while they last!”
But if you don’t care to add new products or bundles, there’s another option.
Your products themselves may not have anything to do with Halloween — but you can always change up your packaging to be festive.
With a simple Google search, I found a few companies you can reach out to get Halloween shipping materials:
Jakodan (Denmark, Europe)
Oriental Trading Company (Nebraska, USA)
Wholesale Central (Connecticut, USA)
SoOPAK (Ontario, Canada)
Of course, if you already buy your shipping boxes wholesale, you can call your manufacturer and ask if they offer Halloween boxes. If you’re dropshipping, you can likewise ask your dropshipper if they have Halloween packaging.
Everyone loves a good giveaway, especially when it involves Halloween. Want to have one of your own? Follow these steps:
Obviously, if you’re going to do a giveaway, you need something to give away. This is a great chance to use some of those new Halloween-themed products and bundles you made in tactic #4.
To get more eyeballs (and create a better prize pool), consider partnering up with a non-competitor like AppSumo do with their giveaways. They can give away some of their products and share the giveaway with their following.
For example (while not Halloween related), Shopify store Colourpop teamed up with Hello Kitty to create some awesome collaborative products and giveaways.
Don’t have a partner on hand? Finding one is easy enough — just Google keywords related to your niche to find bloggers and other companies with a decent following.
Going back to the urban plant growing business, I would search something like “urban gardening tips”.
Avoid the big news sites, since they’re unlikely to get back to you. Stick to single-author blogs or businesses with small teams, as they’re the most likely to work with you.
Create a spreadsheet of people you think might be a good fit based on:
Their social media following.
The quality of their website.
Their post engagement (comments and shares).
Start with the best fits and simply send them an email. You can send something like this:
I was doing some research on [topic] and found your site. You have some awesome [content, products, something else cool about their business].
I’d love to help send traffic your way!
My name is [your name] and I run [your business site]. We’re [explain what your business is/does].
I’m reaching out because I’d love to partner with you on a giveaway we’re doing for Halloween!
When are you free for a quick five-minute chat? I can do [offer three dates/times].
Looking forward to hearing from you! :)
Pro tip: Not sure where to find their email? Use a tool like Hunter.io or Viola Norbert to find emails quickly and efficiently.
Will this be a photo contest or simply a “share to win” type contest? Will people have to make a purchase to enter? If so, is there a minimum purchase price?
There’s no right answer to these questions. They’re just things to think about before you dive in.
No giveaway is complete without a hashtag. They can help you track the results of your campaign, spark some virality, and collect user-generated content.
Check to make sure your hashtag isn’t already being used. Just search for it on Twitter/Instagram.
Make it short, easy to spell, and memorable, if possible.
There’s a lot more to giveaways than what I’ve outlined here, like social media sharing, a point system, etc.
Luckily, KingSumo handles all that for you. If you just do steps 1-4, KingSumo does the rest — including generating your terms and conditions for you.
Below is an example from Groove Candies that got 2,777 entries using KingSumo. For their giveaway prize they offered a Halloween Ultimate Treat Mix with 10 lbs. of trick-or-treat candy:
The last Halloween marketing strategy I have for you is simple: Pinterest.
Pinterest is one of THE best places to be as an ecommerce store owner — whether you’re into Halloween or not. Pinterest can help you year-round.
If you haven’t already, go sign up for a Pinterest business account. Then fill out your account with 5-10 boards with 5-10 pins each (so you don’t look like a spammer).
Pro tip: Those 5-10 pins should be of OTHER PEOPLE’S content, not your own. You can create a special “Best of [Your Business Name Here]” board for your content and products.
How should you use Pinterest for your Halloween marketing? Here are some pointers:
Create eye-catching Pinterest graphics for every page, post, and product you want to share on Pinterest (especially those Halloween craft guides you made). You can do this for free with Canva, or hire someone on Fiverr to make them for you if you’re not into design.
Join Pinterest group boards. You can find them by going to a competitor’s Pinterest account, clicking Boards, then looking for the circle with multiple profile pictures attached to them.
Reach out to the board owner via email and ask if you can join their board.
Pin your content to your best of board and to each of the group boards you joined ONCE (many boards have a one-pin rule). Keep in mind the group boards may have other rules, and if you don’t follow them they may kick you out.
And that’s all there is to it. You’ll now be getting eyeballs from Pinterest. This is a powerful strategy — one of my sites gets over 500 visits per day from Pinterest alone using this strategy!
You’re now armed with seven crucial Halloween marketing tactics to squeeze the most out of this fun holiday.
Are you ready to get started?
Click the button below to get access to the Halloween marketing checklist.
Halloween is fun — and people don’t mind paying for fun.