Is Your Brand Prepared For The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale?

If you’re a high-end retailer, the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale will inevitably impact your DTC site and your advertising campaigns. DTC brands need to implement strategies to maximize their acquisitions during this period. Using strategic messaging and promotional tactics, brands can maintain relevancy and even increase conversions.

Competing Against Retailers with Multi-Week Discount Campaigns

While we're focused on Nordstrom for this article, the following tactics can be used whenever industry specific retailers run large discount campaigns. Examples would be Amazon Prime day, or even the holiday season.

Communicate Your Value

Recognize what Nordstrom does well, and if you can offer the same things to your shoppers, communicate it. Nordstrom has a reputation for: variety, an unparalleled in-store experience, quick shipping, hassle-free returns, etc.

While most DTC brands, especially one that is growing, can't offer everything that a big retailer would, you can focus on specific values. For example, if your brand can deliver on free shipping and an exceptional online shopping experience, speak to it in your organic and paid messaging during the sale. 

Differentiate Your Brand

Lean into what you can offer that Nordstrom can’t. On the opposite end of the spectrum, there are benefits to being a brand that is smaller than Nordstrom.

Do you have SKUs on your DTC site that they don’t carry? Highlight them in your emails, ads, text messages, etc. during those weeks. And, of equal importance, message the scarcity of those products through phrases like “available only at [your website]” or “limited production quantities available at [your website].

Create Value Adds

Offer a different type of added value to your customer. Many high-end brands try not to discount, which is a good thing for healthy brand growth. However during Anniversary Sale they may be required to.

While it’s important to offer consistent pricing for similar products, if you are really trying to limit the occasions and opportunities for markdowns, you can offer shoppers a different type of added value like Gift with Purchase or free two-day shipping to earn the transaction.

Many times, whether conscious or not, shoppers are more attracted to added value than discounting, especially those who are luxury brand consumers. 

Scale Your Ad Budgets

Scale your ad budgets. It is difficult to fight off inflated CPMs due to the demand during those weeks in the marketplace. When demand for ads increases, so does the cost of your placements. That means, if you want the same results you’ve been seeing in the weeks and months leading up to the sale, your budgets will have to grow.

If you don’t want to put pressure on your campaigns, scale back and take the weight off your lower funnel. Take advantage of the heightened consumer activity and run awareness campaigns that are traditionally less expensive. You may not see an increase in ROAS right away, but if executed properly, you will ultimately see longer term gains and broader brand awareness. 

Lean On Organic Content

Keep your organic content calendar loaded. Consumers will be shopping during the weeks that Nordstrom runs its sale, that means more eyeballs will be online. Keep your content fresh and full so when users are scrolling through the various social media platforms, yours is what gets their thumb to stop. 


The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale preview begins on July 6th; the sale will be accessible to all shoppers on July 28th. Be ready.


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