Measure Your Holiday Sales Performance in 3 Steps

January 11, 2017

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The holidays are behind us. The retail industry planned ahead, pushed the creativity to the limit, planned the best audiences, and executed in the most efficient way to maximize success. January is going to be the time to see the bottom line! Let’s summarize how to evaluate our marketing efforts in this ‘generous’ time of year.

1. Measure overall holiday business

We all know revenue is the most common business performance indicator for all industries. For retail, there’s a lot more indicators. Uncover the performance by measuring these primary metrics, to start with:

  • Revenue, in particular for the peak days (Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, etc.)
  • Margin (watch it carefully, you may be sacrificing too much of it just to get more holiday sales)
  • Average Order Value (check if you could drive your customers to buy more)
  • # of customers
  • # of new customers
  • # of returning customers
  • # of reactivated customers
  • (for E-com) Website traffic
  • (for E-com) Holiday deals landing page views

Just to know these numbers would not tell you anything alone, but compare these figures with previous years’ performance to see how you did, and do your best to identify the underlying factors for the differences.

2.  Measure your campaigns

Campaign performance is another key identifier of marketing success. As I know you are a great marketer, I assume you already set your KPIs for each campaign. I would check

  • redeemed coupons for holiday deals
  • open rates for the strength of the subjects,
  • click-through rates to see if the deals were tempting,
  • conversion to see if we could drive our customer to purchase,
  • revenue per click/per thousand impression
  • (email) revenue per send/margin per send

Of course, you can derive more metrics from these simple yet insightful ones. Also, since there are a lot of campaigns running simultaneously in all channels, avoid duplicate attributions which will buff up your campaign results erroneously.

3.  Enrich both with other verticals

Say you were able to identify how your revenue changed compared to last year, or you saw remarkable conversion rate in some of your campaigns. This data may not give you enough data to repeat the success in the following years.

Add some verticals to your analysis. My favorites are

1-   Product detail: Not all products are equal. Understand which products/product categories that contributed to your success and find out why.

2-   Geography detail: Customers in different geographies buy differently and respond to your campaigns differently. Identify where you performed better, find out why.

There is a lot to say on this subject, but I would like to keep it simple and specific. I appreciate more ideas; here are some questions to the ones who would like to contribute:

1-   How do you measure your overall business performance for the holiday season?

2-   What are your KPIs for your holiday campaigns?

3-   What other details you use for further analysis, in addition to product and geography?


Planning for the 2017 holidays already? It's never to early or late!

Take a look at our Holiday eGuide! It supplies you with best practices and creative campaign ideas that will help you have your best holiday sales ever. 

Don't Stop there! In this webinar, marketing leaders from Ashley Stewart, John Varvatos, and Jonathan Adler share exactly how they prepare for the holidays, what campaigns are most effective, and how they creatively retain customers after the holiday rush.