Packages, bundles, gift bags, getaway kits — call them what you want, but grouping complementary products is an effective and inexpensive way to boost sales and cross-promote your inventory. Bundling products also makes the shopping experience much easier for the customer, especially first-time buyers. Think about the customer who sees the lube wall for the first time and imagine what’s going through their head — more often than not it’s probably something like, “Where do I even start?” That’s when your sales associate comes in, points to your new “Lube Starter Kit” on the wall and says, “Right here, Mr. Senator.”
We all strive to make things easier for our customers and one of the best ways to do that is by simplifying the overall shopping experience. In addition to a well-trained and pleasant staff, there are several methods to achieve an easy shopping environment. Eye-catching displays, professional signage, in-store videos, color cues, interactive design, slick merchandising, even clever wall murals can all contribute to a simple shopping trip. But another way is to unburden the customer with needless research and decision-making by providing some simple direction with your product offerings.
Product packages are not just a great way to break in new customers; they’re extremely effective when it comes to launching a brand that’s new to your shoppers.
Enter the product bundle, a supremely efficient way to break in newcomers, win the sale and generate repeat business. We’ve seen several manufacturers put out their own beginners kits, value packs, weekend getaways, etc. but you can and should put together your own. Creating custom packages targeting specific customers is a lot easier today with so many different products and customer segments now in the marketplace.
Put yourself in the shoes of your new customers and take the confusion out of the equation while they shop your store for the first time. Let’s start with an example of a significant customer demographic and build a “Big Gay Bundle.” Think differently, remember, your gay bundle doesn’t just have to be a value pack of cock rings and butt plugs. Incorporate some male lingerie or jockstraps, lubricant, condoms, hard-on pills, and/or restraints into your bundle. If you have top sellers, bundle them with slow movers that need a push and sell them together.
Are the majority of your customers single males? Does your store have a DVD section? Put together a “Whack Pack.” A few DVDs, a stroker, a high-end masturbation cream and some personal wipes completes the pack. Bundle it together, put it on the shelves, promote it and watch it sell. There are enough niches and fetishes in the video and pleasure products world to create packages for every sexual demographic under the sun.
If you run a luxury boutique and your primary customers are couples, create a “Romance in a Box,” “Decadent Nights for Two” or something similar to target your lovebirds. Sexy lingerie, sensual oils, candles, couples vibrator and of course, the blindfold. This saves the shopper from having to pour over every item so they can make their selection quickly and…move to their next purchase. Romance and couples bundles generally set up a real nice upsell at the counter as well. “I see you’re going to try the Decadent Nights, would you like to add a rose, card, or romance game with that?” A simple and pleasant first-trip to the “sex shop” paves the way for return visits.
Product packages are not just a great way to break in new customers; they’re extremely effective when it comes to launching a brand that’s new to your shoppers. Piggybacking as it’s sometimes referred to, and it’s pretty much what it sounds like — taking an established brand and using that name and reputation to segue customers into trying a new brand; all by simply packaging them together. For you musicians, this is like giving a local band an opening gig for an established national act. Just keep in mind that you certainly want to make sure the products are complementary and make sense to the existing audience who is going to be trying them for the first time.
Another huge benefit of these bundles and packages is that it gives your associates ammunition for talking to customers. “Have you seen our Anal Newbies Kit? It has everything you need to get started with anal play. Not for you, how about our Tasty Delights Package? This is for couples who want to incorporate body toppings into their lovemaking.” Conversation starters are always a good first step towards a sale and anything and everything you can do to create those for your staff will increase your profits.
As always, do your research. Know who your customers are and group your products based on that data. Give your customers more value, increase sales and effectively cross-promote products — all it takes is a little cellophane and creativity.
Brian Sofer currently serves as marketing ninja at Eldorado Trading Company. Sofer joined the Eldorado team in 2010. Brian is a creative, results-oriented marketing professional with extensive experience across his career utilizing digital media.