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Prepare your E-Commerce Business for January Sales

January sales are a huge time for e-commerce, to get people to spend after Christmas. Here's how to prepare your online store for January Sales.

Prepare your E-Commerce Business for January Sales

Whilst after Christmas consumers are often feeling their wallets burning, they can’t resist getting a bargain on something they’ve been eyeing up but thought too expensive before, or an impulse purchase of something they didn’t think they wanted.

January sale season is also the time a lot of consumers start thinking about the year ahead, even going so far as to take advantage of buying discounted birthday gifts for friends and family way in advance.

With this in mind, there’s a lot to think about when planning your after Christmas sale and we’re here to help you get prepared…

1)  Decide when to Start your Sale

Traditionally, post-Christmas sales always started either Boxing Day, the day after Boxing Day or New Year’s Day when consumers only had the option of going to physical stores but times have changed.

As eCommerce started to become popular, many retailers realised they could take advantage of Christmas Day itself and start their sales early.

The average adult will spend nearly 7 and half hours online on December 25th  which is a huge opportunity for eCommerce so we would recommend starting your sale a couple of days before Christmas at least.

With a dedicated sale app on a good e-commerce platform like Shopify or BigCommerce you’ll even be able to schedule it in advance to start when you’d like if you plan on taking a couple of days off.

2) Decide when your Sale will End

An end date is also an essential part of planning your January sale and something you can promote so consumers know how long they have left.

Many larger brands will select and promote an end date and then give their sales a false extension into February 1st to capture consumers after the first pay day of the year because remember, January is a long month with many people getting paid before Christmas.

3) Decide Which Products to Discount

When selecting products to discount in your January sale it would be easy to take a broad look at your stock and decide to just discount stock that you want to shift, or stock that is going out of season.

Of course, discounting out of season or overstocked items is a no brainer but you also need to take a broader look at items you’re stocking and what’s selling well.

Looking at your supplier lists to see which items they’ve discontinued or which items have new editions or variations being released, as well as items that have been selling and would be profitable even at a discount.

Also look at seasonality and upcoming events. There’s no reason you can’t get people thinking about Valentines Day early by listing Valentine’s Day items in your sale.

Having the highly desirable items in your sale will of course help people buy the overstocked or out of season items that you want to shift to make room for the new.

Once you’ve decided on the products you want to discount, put them in a spreadsheet so they’re easily organised as you build your sale.

4) Set your Discounts

Now you’ve decided on which products you’re going to discount you can get to work on setting your discounts for each product or product category.

We would never recommend offering a blanket sale discount and instead work on a sliding scale, thinking about the maximum discount you want to offer and then work backwards.

Look at what you can afford to discount from certain products, discounting those that aren’t big sellers the most and discounting popular products the least.

Once you’ve got your discounts and products in a handy spreadsheet, you can start thinking about how you’re going to promote your sale.

5) Plan your Promotion

One of the most important aspects of having a sale is promoting it and to do that you need to prepare visually appealing graphics and a plan of how you’re going to promote it.

Social media and email marketing are great for getting the word out there but the way you need to communicate it needs to be visually appealing.

Our favourite tool to use to create graphics is Canva, and there’s a free version available so you don’t need to spend any money.

In Canva, you can create social media posts, email headers and website banners that will help attract attention to your sale and there are plenty of templates so no design skills are needed!


On your website, you’ll want to add your January Sale items to you regular sale collection or category if you have one but change any banners or graphics that advertise it to say “January Sale”, “Boxing Day Sale” or however you’d like to word it.

Social Media:

Just posting product images with some ad copy above them won’t grab people’s attention. Create some bold and bright graphics to promote your sale to your followers and customers. It doesn’t need to be complex, it just needs to stand out!

Email Marketing:

If you’re using email marketing, it can be one of the best and easiest ways to get customers to click through to your website and buy! All you need is a simple header graphic to advertise your sale, feature a couple of products and send it out!

6) Scheduling

Depending on your e-commerce platform, you may not be able to schedule your banner images which is part of why we recommend starting your sale early. Nobody wants to be up at midnight on Christmas eve working!

Scheduling social media and email marketing is easy though – you can send things at the time you want it to go out but set it up in advance.

Email Marketing

Whether you’re using Klaviyo, MailChimp, Constant Contact or any other email marketing platform, you’ll easily be able to set posts to send at a certain time.

We’d recommend sending on Christmas Day morning at around 11am because customers will have eaten breakfast, opened presents and it’s not too close to lunch.

Social Media

Scheduling posts on social media is easy in 2022 because there are tools such as Hootsuite you can use to schedule, and it’s absolutely free.

All you need to do is write some text for your ad, upload your images, post a link and choose the time and date you want to send.

There used to be “rules” around the best times and days to schedule social media posts but it’s not strictly true anymore with social media changing the way they serve organic content.

We’d still recommend scheduling social media posts either mid morning or late afternoon on Christmas day as it is when most users are likely to be online scrolling.

With a good e-commerce platforms and the apps and integrations that are available, setting up and advertising a sale is simple and doesn’t have to be too time consuming but if you’re short on time and need some help, get in touch.

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