You have made the decision. It’s time to close your retail business. In most cases the primary reasons you have made that decision is that business is declining. Your customer count is way down.Your advertising is not working.

So, how are you going to sell your entire inventory and fixtures in just 60 to 90 days.You need to have a concise, well thought-out marketing plan. You not only need to get them in the door the first time. You need to keep them coming back throughout the sale. And you have to do it as inexpensively as possible.

Your advertising budget should be determined by your customer list. The better your customer list the smaller your promotional budget needs to be. If you have a good customer list with both email addresses and snail mail addresses your promotional budget can be 3% of estimated sales or less. If you have no customer list you should plan on a promotional budget of 8% – 10% of estimated sales.

Below are some of the marketing tools that I use when developing an effective marketing plan for my clients that have decided to run a Store Closing Sale.

Exterior Sale Signs – often creates more traffic than any other means, depending on location

Press Releases – the best free advertising you can getDuring the next several weeks I will cover each of these tools in a separate blog. The balance & timing of using these tools vary by each stores unique situation and not every tool is used for every sale.

Email Marketing – least expensive way to reach your customer

Direct Mail – letters or postcards, used for initial and follow-up marketing

Social Media – Social media like Facebook, Twitter and Google + is beginning to popular tool

Prize Drawing or Contest – incentive to come in initially/captures contact information for follow-up

Web site marketing/pay per click campaign – can be target at local market

Newspaper Ads– weekly paper that covers primarily local news usually produces best results