October is rapidly approaching, which means you need to get your Halloween marketing in order! This is the time of year that many of my clients are getting their lingerie-adjacent costume section set up, so I’ve had lots of experience helping them.
Halloween product listings are one of those things that can be delightful and magical or totally terrible depending on some key factors. Today I’m going to try to help you navigate some of the bigger pitfalls so you can rack up more sales! We’re focusing on the plus-size side of things today but most of these tips are applicable to core size costumes as well. I’ve also included pictures and links to companies who are doing things right so you can see some good examples in action.
Don’t ever use a picture of a core size model when a plus-size model photo is available.
This used to be a major issue when it came to stocking plus-size lingerie and Halloween costumes! Many smaller retailers were forced to use pictures of the standard size models or re-shoot each piece on a plus-size model (on their own time and with their own budget). Luckily, the landscape of available imagery is much better now!
There are definitely advantages to re-shooting costumes on your own models if you have the time and resources, but that’s not your only option if you’re short on time or on budget. Thankfully, the popular costume wholesalers now usually offer plus-size photos alongside the core size ones. Usually it’s simply a matter of taking a few extra seconds to pull the right one and add it to your listing.
This may seem like extra work, but it will make a huge difference when it comes to sales! Customers will be more likely to buy something that is displayed on a model who looks like them. If you don’t do it, customers may not only pass you by but assume that you don’t actually want plus-size customers – thereby turning them off your company altogether.
Choose your stock wisely.
Halloween should be full of fun and not full of bad feelings! Think about how your stock choices would make a wide range of customers feel when viewed as part of a whole. There are the obvious bad choices that make the news each year, but there can be more subtle issues as well. Is your entire site full of white models in Halloween costumes but the ‘sexy convict’ costume is shown on a black model? That’s an equally serious issue.
Don’t make customers search for size charts.
Customers may be willing to go to extra trouble to make sure an expensive t-shirt bra fits, but they won’t put the same time or effort into picking out a quick Halloween outfit for a party. Since costume sizing varies wildly from company to company, make sure that each size chart is front and center! Don’t assume that shoppers will follow a link to a generic size chart either. Many will miss it completely and you’ll miss the sale.
Teach your customers how to accessorize.
Halloween is all about having the best outfit, but many customers don’t know how to create one! If you carry accessories, this can be a great opportunity to up-sell a variety of additional products. If you do want to re-shoot some pieces on plus-size models then use it as an opportunity to create a unique look that customers can buy from you. Since there’s lots of overlap in the Halloween costume category, this can be a great way to help your boutique or business stand out from the crowd. You can also use these images for social media and Instagram shopping features.
Be clear about what comes with each costume.
This is incredibly important when it comes to selling Halloween costumes! They’re often styled as full outfits, but come with fewer pieces than the image shows. Make sure you’re crystal clear about what parts of each outfit are included in the costume (and make sure to link to appropriate accessories to complete the rest). Your customers will appreciate the clarity and you’ll lower your return rates for the season.