The results are coming out on the online shopping season, and no surprise – it's up a reported 24% from last year according to comScore. Walmart.com couldn't take the web traffic on Black Friday, so that should tell you something about where shoppers are spending time.
So why isn't radio in on the act? As shoppers try to save money, why shouldn't stations with great brands be offering great merchandising on their websites – shirts, caps, morning show CDs, and whatever logo products you can think of? And with a megaphone like every station has – its own air – there's no way that listeners wouldn't take advantage of the opportunity, and pick up on station-branded stocking stuffers.
Before online shopping, it was difficult for stations to sell their wares. Many hooked up with retailers who didn't have the station's best interests in mind. But now that the Internet has become a great shopping machine, radio should be cashing in, along with all those other retailers out there.
This is an easy, simple, and effective way for stations to add several thousand dollars to their December billing – without having to do a whole lot to make it happen. Unlike so many other products, consumers still love to display their favorite stations logos on their bodies, and yet, we make it so difficult for them to do so.
As I continue to be bombarded by emails from my favorite sports teams trying to sell me their logo merchandise, I wonder why the radio station clubs I belong to keep telling me about their holiday programs or contests, and not offering me the chance to buy some of their cool wearables and trinkets.
A simple PayPal account, or credit card set-up, and some easily purchased/installed software can get you going, and give your station an opportunity to cash in on Christmas. And, if the upfront expense of buying the items and handling fullfillment seems like too much hassle, you still have no excuse – there's a bunch of places that can handle the heavy lifting for you.
Hey, if that's not American, what is?