November 24, 2022
People will be looking at ‘affordable luxuries’ this festive season, and Luke Mckenna, content marketing administrator at Eco Vape, explains how retailers can win big with vapes.
Christmas is always the busiest time of the year for the retail sector, as consumers across the country rush to buy gifts, food, drinks and more for the holiday season.
However, unlike the UK retail market as a whole, the vape sector doesn’t always see the same boom in sales through the December month. Instead, the vape industry traditionally focuses more on “Stoptober” and January, when demand increases as smokers across the country attempt to quit tobacco and search for a safer alternative.
In past years, custom vape mods, coil decks and DIY vaping were still a large part of the vape market, presenting an easy opportunity to sell mods with bespoke holiday designs, Christmas-themed accessories and DIY kits.
However, DIY vaping now makes up a tiny percentage of the vape market, which is becoming more focused on convenience and FMCG products like disposable vapes. The majority of consumers now purchase simpler devices like vape pens, vape pods and disposables, alongside the bread and butter 10ml e-liquids.
This presents a new challenge to the vape sector during the holiday season, one that requires new thinking and strategies to make the most of the Christmas period.
Why does the vape sector not see a boost in sales over Christmas? Though there are several reasons, it’s at least partly because it is hard to buy e-liquids for someone without knowing their preferences, strengths, flavours and device beforehand.
What strength will they need? What flavours do they like? What device do they have and what e-liquids does it work best with? If they don’t have a device yet, which device would work best for them?
This creates a higher barrier to entry for gift buying than other retail products, and the vape sector has had to adapt to this. It’s important that retailers lower the barrier to entry for consumers who have no knowledge about vaping and to make it as accessible as possible.
One solution has been to focus on selling a limited range bespoke “Christmas flavoured” e-liquids, brought out specifically for the holidays.
Another option is to promote simpler and lower cost options, such as single use hybrid disposables (a relatively new development in the vape sector), which require little product knowledge, no maintenance and are available in tried and tested flavours. They’re a great “low-risk” option and universally useful to all vapers as a convenient, on-the-go device.
That being said, there are still plenty of opportunities to create excitement around the vape sector at Christmas! As we mentioned above, one of the most common vape-related Christmas presents are seasonal flavoured e-liquids.
Each year, many vape brands release exclusive Christmas themed e-liquid flavours, such as the Psycho Bunny Candy Cane or Christmas Cookie Shortfills. Since these are “novelty” flavours, they are a quick and fun gift for vapers that ticks all the boxes. They can be sold as zero nicotine shortfills or as TPD 10ml liquids.
Selling seasonal flavours with a compatible device is a great way to push sales over the holidays and increase your margin, whilst encouraging customers to come back to the store in the future to restock on e-liquids, coils and more!
With over 23 retail stores across the North of England, we’ve found that bespoke, limited edition flavours, as well as vape pods and hybrid disposables, are the most popular Christmas gifts for vapers. In particular, sweeter flavours such as desserts and candy flavours, such as Cherry Bakewell or Apple Pie, tend to be the go-to gift flavours.
As we mentioned, an effective way for retailers to push Christmas-themed e-liquids is by selling them as a bundle, alongside a compatible device that works out of the box. From selling an Iore Lite pod with five free e-liquids to a Voopoo Argus pod kit with a selection of nic salts, the choice is yours!
On the other hand, you can keep it simple by focusing on hybrid disposables. These are low cost, can last up to two weeks (depending on vaping style) and are a safe gift option for those who don’t know much about vaping.
The BEAR + Aspire R1 is a 3500 puff hybrid disposable vape available in 24 popular flavours, and is the first compliant 3500 puff device in the UK. Costing around £10, it is relatively low cost, requires no maintenance and can be an ideal last minute Christmas present!
Bring in loyalty
There are lots of ways to boost your vape sales at Christmas, even though the holiday season isn’t traditionally a big month for the vape sector. From bundle deals to mix and match offers, small discounts are a proven way to catch your customers’ attention.
However, this comes at the expense of profit margin on the products, so it is best to use a loyalty system such as a stamp cards or coupons which encourage customers to keep coming back after the holiday season is over. This helps you simultaneously push sales over Christmas whilst building a long term and loyal customer base.
Lastly, we shouldn’t forget marketing. Eco Vape provides its wholesale customers with bespoke product stands, marketing A-boards, posters, leaflets, digital marketing packs and more so they can successfully promote their products to their customers.
Make sure your marketing is clear, in multiple locations, placed at eye level and includes an eye-catching price. Customers won’t buy if customers don’t know!