Why You Need a Holiday Catalog or Lookbook

By Stephanie WarnerNovember 30, 2016Last updated on September 20, 2021Editorial, Content Marketing, Tips

Why You Need a Holiday Catalog or Lookbook

September is more than halfway over and now is the time to kick your holiday campaign planning into high gear — if you haven’t already! Holiday shopping will start by the end of October and you want to have your entire holiday marketing plan set soon. Planning is only the first step, of course, then it’s time to build all of the marketing content, design assets, and messaging that you identified in your marketing plan. Retailers, small businesses, and other organizations should include a holiday catalog or lookbook in your marketing plan. In fact, the holiday catalog should be the centerpiece of all the content you create to promote your products or offerings. And by planning ahead, you can create a stunning, well-designed holiday catalog including e-commerce links that will drive business this holiday season!

The iconic holiday catalog

The holiday catalog is an icon, with roots back to the Sears Christmas Catalog, which originally launched in 1933. Today, consumers still love to sit back and flip, scroll and browse holiday shopping collections — whether delivered in print or digitally. Tap the power of the consumer’s nostalgia and love for beautiful displays by creating your own holiday catalog to delight your customers.

It is often the case that the cost of printing a catalog is prohibitive for many businesses, but thanks to digital publishing, there is no longer a need to print your catalog. Publishing a digital catalog saves money and saves trees! Publish a sleek digital catalog that you can share on email, social media, embed on your website, and so much more! 

Seven ways your business can benefit from a digital catalog

1. Professionalism. Your business may be small, but that doesn’t mean you can’t play along with the big dogs. Successful businesses create catalogs and lookbooks to share their wares while adding a level of professionalism customers appreciate. Publishing your catalog on a digital platform like Issuu.com will also look more professional than simply linking to a clunky PDF or emailing a large attachment. 

2. Proof of product. Show off your products to potential buyers with your catalog or lookbook. A picture speaks a thousand words, so you’ll be saying a lot with a nicely designed and photo-heavy publication. Digital catalogs can also add exciting levels of interactivity that will enhance the customer’s experience. Embed a product video, a 360-degree product image, or link to live reviews to further demonstrate proof of your product. 

3. Simple click to buy. Digital catalogs make purchases super easy for your customers with one-click shopping links. Gone are the days where we need to circle items we want, wait on hold for who knows how long, and put in an order over the phone. While perusing your beautiful digital gift guide, customers who are interested in your products can click through to buy with ease. Catalogs are now their own revenue-driving content, another reason they are so important for your holiday marketing!

4. Wide distribution. The fact of the matter is, customers are online. The average person has doubled time spent online in the last year. Don’t limit your small business by its location. Use an online catalog or lookbook to hit every possible consumer base out there. Where there’s internet, there’s a potential new customer. 

5. Upgrade your website. Transform your website for the holiday season by embedding your catalog right on the homepage or as an introduction to your shopping section. The holiday-designed catalog will make your website look festive and encourage site visitors to get into the holiday spirit and start shopping. 

6. Cement your brand name. Associate your logo and brand name with a beautiful publication customized just for the holidays. This will help to build a solid reputation around your business.

7. Holiday cheer. Everyone loves the addition of festive colors or graphics in honor of the upcoming holidays. Customize your catalog for the holidays and your customers will be in the right spirit every time. Now that you’re convinced a holiday catalog or lookbook should be central to your holiday marketing this year, it’s time to start the planning and development of the catalog.

Lights hanging between two buildings with people walking underneath the lights.

Create a holiday catalog to delight and drive sales

The first goal of your holiday catalog or lookbook should be to create excitement for your brand and products or offerings. The second goal for a digital catalog should be to drive reads and revenue with easy access to tracking, one-click shopping, and catalog stats. Issuu is the perfect digital publishing platform to power your holiday catalog and will help you meet your goals in addition to offering even more enhancements to your catalog content and publishing.

Issuu offers everything you need to create and transform your catalog into a digital sales engine. Wondering if it would be more beneficial to create a catalog or a lookbook? Check out our handy dandy guide on the difference between a catalog and lookbook. Not sure where to start? Check out the Issuu catalog template to download and customize with product images, custom text, logos, and more. Once you have the Issuu template finalized you can upload it directly to Issuu, or upload your catalog in a PDF, Powerpoint, Word, and other accepted file formats. In just a few clicks, Issuu produces a sleek digital flipbook of your holiday catalog that is ready to embed on your website, share easily in email, on social channels, or via mobile. Did you know that Issuu also optimizes your holiday catalog for search engines? Now your content can be discovered by an even wider audience.

The Issuu flipbook doesn’t just wow with its tactile page-turns, but your holiday catalog content is made interactive with the ability to add web links, embed video, and more. The most powerful interactive elements are the e-commerce links, which turn your holiday catalog into its own revenue-generating sales engine. In just one click, readers become customers as they buy directly from the catalog!

Preview of holiday catalog pages on a tablet, mobile, laptop and desktop screen.

Your catalog is the centerpiece of your marketing

We understand that a holiday catalog is already a huge undertaking that will require many hours of work and resources, but when you consider how it can be the centerpiece of your holiday marketing activities, all of the efforts will be worth it! When you use Issuu to publish your holiday catalog, Issuu also makes it easy to turn your catalog content into unique and engaging derivative assets to use in email, social media, as mobile-optimized articles, and GIFs. Don’t stress about needing even more time and resources to create custom assets for each channel. Instead, let Issuu pull out all the awesome catalog content to make tons of derivative assets such as social stories to distribute on Instagram and Facebook. Or use an engaging GIF in your email that links to your catalog. Perhaps your catalog groups similar products together, make those sections into mobile-optimized article stories to share with specific messaging about the product type.

Your beautiful holiday catalog or lookbook will become striking derivative assets for an omnichannel holiday marketing plan! Create more and sell more on Issuu.

Holiday catalogs to inspire

Still not quite sure a holiday catalog is right for your marketing plan? Get inspired by what other brands and creators publish to promote their holiday offerings and drive business during the biggest shopping season of the year.

The Etsy Holiday Lookbook 2021

Etsy is all set for the 2021 holiday season with a perfectly curated lookbook featuring perfect gifts for her, him, kids, and the home. Not only does this lookbook have awesome photography, but the product images are linked directly to the individual Esty shops, so readers can purchase as they flip the pages!

Sugarfina Fall and Holiday Catalog 2021

Sugarfina, everyone’s favorite luxury candy boutique has all your sweet gifting needs covered! Whether you need a custom gift for an event or as a holiday corporate gift — Sugarfina can customize the package, candy, and quantity to fit your needs. The beautiful catalog showcases all of the gift options, with stunning photography of the colorful and sweet treats they offer!

Zabar’s Holiday Catalog 2020

This catalog is the perfect example of a local business that needs global reach. Zabar’s has been on 80th & Broadway since 1934 where they’ve welcomed and grown with their neighborhood. Zabar’s has always been built on traditions and family and “Zabar’s Holiday Traditions and Gifting Catalog 2020” offers new ideas to make the season special from a fresh look for their gift boxes; favorite Hanukkah gifts; plus new, warm and welcoming foods to choose from!

The holiday season is right around the corner and Issuu can help you create a beautiful holiday catalog that will drive sales and wow your readers. Sign up for Issuu today to create your catalog and get your holiday campaign underway!