How Offering Weekly Specials Can Increase Your Sales

by Gail Oliver, Online Marketing Consultant

When I was working in the head office of a major grocery store chain I remember the president asking one of the store managers how sales were going and his response was, “The only thing that sells well are the specials”.


So, if your sales are hurting, have you thought about adopting the grocery store model of offering weekly specials? Now I don’t mean a weekly special across your whole shop, that would defeat the purpose. I mean just a few select products that are “on special” that particular week.

“On special” is little different from something being “on sale”. When something is “on sale”, it makes it sound like it has been permanently reduced in price. Therefore, unless there is a limited stock available, customers still don’t see the urgency to buy, and may wait to see if the price goes down further.

A “special offer” makes it sound like it is just for a limited time and it doesn’t always have to be just a price reduction. It can be a free gift, free shipping, free personalization or a free service.

Some Examples of Weekly Special Offers:

  • The Body Shop likes to offer specials such as, “Get any 3 Mini Body Butters for $10 ($18 value)” or “Complimentary Body Butter with your $60+ Purchase”. 
  • Old Navy likes to offer specials such as, “This Week Only $15 Dresses”
  • J. Crew likes to offer specials such as, “30% off all jewelry” (in other words, just a particular shop section is on special).
  • Payless Shoes is known for their BOGO special, “Buy One, Get One Half Off” that they only offer every now and then.

Plus, if your customers see that you make a habit of offering weekly specials, like the grocery stores do, they may be more likely to check back with your store more often to see what the special is this week. Offering weekly specials will not only potentially increase your sales, but also your return customer business, so give it a try.

My Weekly Special!

october-online-coverAs we are already half way through the month, my October Marketing
Plan for Online Shops
(or Etsy Shops) is on special for $7 (regular $12) but only until October 20th when November’s Plan
comes out.


Author: Gail Oliver, Online Small Business Consultant

I'm Gail Oliver, an online marketing consultant. Welcome to my blog, chosen one of the Top 10 Small Business Blogs to Follow in 2014 by American Express Open Forum. If you need help with your e-commerce business, be sure to see MY SERVICES, above.