The Christmas rush is looming. Black Friday is just around the corner. Are you ready for it? Now is the perfect time to sprinkle a bit of extra magic across your website to maximise your sales potential.
What’s our number one tip for any e-Commerce website? Preparation! Take a look at where you should start.
Learn from last year
Data is your best friend when it comes to preparing for Christmas. Although you can’t see into the future to know exactly how your customers will behave, last year’s data will provide a good insight to make smart estimations. But what do you need to know?
- Busiest times – For most e-Commerce businesses, the lead-up to Christmas is the busiest time of year, but knowing when in particular your traffic could spike is useful. This can help to make sure you have enough products to avoid disappointment, enough resource to get deliveries out on time and know when to optimise offers, etc.
- Bestsellers – What were your biggest hits last year? Although consumer trends change, it’s likely that your bestsellers will do well again, so make sure you have enough in stock.
- Consumer behaviour – Understanding how customers navigate around your site, what products interest them or what types of offers encourage them to make the purchase, can help optimise your design and increase conversions.
Improve the user experience
It’s more important during the lead-up to Christmas than ever to ensure your website runs as smoothly as possible. Many consumers find Christmas shopping stressful, so if your site isn’t meeting expectations, you could lose sales to your competitors.
- Checkout experience – The checkout can often be where e-Commerce websites lose their customers. Why? There could be many reasons, but the big ones are that they don’t offer alternative payment methods, they require too much information or insist on an account being created, or the customer doesn’t trust the website enough to insert their payment details. Making your checkout as clear and simple as possible can help boost conversions.
- Mobile commerce – Mobile shopping has become increasingly popular, especially amongst the younger generations. If you ignore mobile commerce, you could lose a huge consumer base. Check out our blog for tips on how to optimise your website for mobile devices.
- Site speed – We all know how frustrating it is to be browsing a website and have to watch the loading circle go round and round. If your website isn’t quick enough, your customers won’t wait around. You may experience heavier traffic during the Christmas shopping period too so you need to make sure everything in the backend is up to scratch to avoid any crashes. You can check your site speed to see if improvements are needed here.
- Navigation – You also want to make sure your customers can easily find what they’re looking for, right? Well, then your website needs to be completely functional. Make the most of filters and categories, test your search bar so that it creates useful results and fix any broken links.
Personalise your content
By making the most of your data, you can segment and personalise your marketing strategy to really make your customers feel special this Christmas. When tailoring your content you can include the customer’s name, the products they’re interested in, a relevant message, target the channel they’re most likely to use, etc.
Here are a few channels you could personalise:
- Email marketing
- Retargeting ads
- Product recommendations
- Special offers
- Loyalty programmes
Optimise social commerce
Social commerce is another way of buying and selling that is gaining traction. Being able to purchase online the latest trends that popular influences are promoting without leaving the app is a huge appeal. By not optimising your social media channels could result in your business missing out on big sales to your competitors who are evolving with the latest developments in e-Commerce.
Abandoned cart strategy
Abandoned cart rates are already an issue with nearly seven out of 10 shoppers leaving their items behind. The closer it gets to Christmas, this rate tends to spike even higher, especially once they find out their item won’t arrive before Christmas. But all is not lost. If you have a good strategy in place, you could still entice your customers back and reduce your abandoned cart rate.
Improve your returns policy
The last thing you want is for your customers to return their items. But if you don’t provide a smooth experience, they may not return to your site in the future. Christmas is rife for returns so it’s important to get the process as simple and quick as possible beforehand.
Take our tips on board to be better prepared for Christmas than your competitors and boost your Christmas sales. If you need more advice on how to improve your checkout experience, get in touch!
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