You still have time to pull this off. Christmas is still 48 days away. Do something Over-the-Top for your customers this season.
Is parking a problem for your store? Offer Free Valet Parking. Get some young motivated drivers to move the cars to the distant lot (hire the local cross-country team – they don’t mind running in the cold and their season just ended).
Offer a seating area with comfortable recliners. Coffee and doughnuts in the morning. Water and fresh fruit in the afternoon.
Do a coat-check.
Have servers walking the store with samples of local treats. Bonus – have them dressed in formal black tie outfits.
Forget the piped in music – have live performers from the local symphony. Get a trio or quartet every Saturday – pay them well (some of them will work for gift cards).
Give them labels to go with their giftwrapped packages.
Give out helium balloons free to every child. (As Winnie the Pooh said, “Nobody can be uncheered with a balloon.”)
Do a Santa Wish List – even for the adults – and keep it on file for spouses, parents, grandparents, aunts & uncles.
Offer a free sample, free inspection, free add-on, free trial, free upgrade, free whatever. Don’t advertise it. (Please don’t advertise it.) Just do it. Freely and with sincerity. Let your customers advertise it for you.
Have a couple doormen carry their packages to their cars – no matter where they parked!
Think about what your customers expect from you, then do something way unexpected and over-the-top. They will talk about you. A lot. To everyone they know.
PS Every fine restaurant in New York has a coat check, usually tucked away in the corner past the crowded bar. When I went to a Danny Meyer restaurant in NY fabled for amazing customer service the greeter took our coats without us having to shuffle through the crowd to the hidden coat check. Better yet, when our party got up to go, the greeter was already waiting with our coats and knew exactly who got which coat. That was unexpectedly cool. And I’m talking about it.