Depending on your industry, the summer months can typically be a slower season for eCommerce businesses. This is a perfect opportunity to begin getting your house in order for the upcoming holiday rush.
Every year, a large number of merchants inevitably wait until the last minute to figure out their marketing strategy for the holidays. Some will even try to fit an entire website redesign or platform migration in before the season hits. All of this adds an unnecessary burden onto an already jam-packed schedule.
In 2018 we published an article titled, 5 eCommerce To-Do’s for a Successful Holiday Season. It’s a great starting point as you look to begin formulating your marketing plan. You can read the article for more detail, but here are the 5 items it suggested getting started on:
- Finalize product promotions, discounts, and specials.
- Refine your shipping policies and cost.
- Optimize your site for speed and anticipate a major increase in traffic.
- Redesign pages to cross-sell and upsell products.
- Confirm your marketing strategy.
We’ve added a few additional items to add to your list of prep work for the 2019 Holidays.
Optimize for Mobile
Mobile experience is already top of mind for most merchants, as it keeps gaining popularity and trust with consumers. According to Adobe Analytics, sales from mobile devices on Cyber Monday last year saw an impressive 48.1% growth from the previous year.
A HubSpot study asked a group of respondents across the US, UK, and Canada how they conducted their holiday shopping in 2018 and found that 33% did the majority of their shopping in brick-and-mortar stores. While this accounted for the largest single tally, combining the respondents that shopped primarily online via desktop (23%) and those that used mobile (11%) reveals an undeniable trend. eCommerce continues to gain popularity as more of the population becomes comfortable trusting the online shopping experience.
- Make sure that your on-site promotions and marketing strategy are optimized for mobile.
- Any ads that you run need to be designed to work in mobile feeds.
- If your website itself is not mobile friendly, you need to seriously evaluate if you have time to make any sweeping changes in time for it to be QA’d for the holidays. Don’t rush anything, or you’ll have worse problems to contend with.
Buy Online, Pick Up in Store (If you have one!)
In the same study by Adobe Analytics, they noted that consumers buying online, and picking up in store increased a whopping 50% from the previous year. Offering the ability for consumers to order from your website and pick up in store allows you a competitive advantage for your local shoppers looking to get their purchase quicker and avoid shipping costs. This also brings more attention to the fact that you have a physical location that local customers may not have previously been aware of. However, implementing a pick-up-in-store policy. It won’t be as simple as adding an option in the checkout process of your website. The last thing you want is to not have the product in store when the customer arrives to pick it up.
- Make sure you have the inventory management tools in place to help you track what you have in stock at the store to be able to fulfill the orders placed online.
- Clearly display on your website that you offer an in-store pickup option.
It’s critical that the ads you create to drive people to your website are consistent with the experience that the customer is receiving when they land on your website. Organizations can tend to operate within silos. One team creates ads and brand awareness, and another is responsible for the website. If separated, these two parties need to be in constant communication.
For example, if you create an ad that features a specific product, make sure that the copy or promotion attached to it is prominently displayed on the product page the customer is landing on. If you do a larger sale, consider creating a specific landing page that features the products and copy you used in the ads that the customer is seeing or clicking on. If the messaging is disjointed or you create more questions than answers for the customer when they land on your website, you will inevitably lose sales and hurt your conversion rates.
- Map out your holiday campaigns well in advance.
- Coordinate with all parties involved to make sure the same messaging and aesthetic is delivered across all touch points.
We encourage you this year to get ahead of the curve and lock down your holiday strategy. You will be less stressed as they holidays approach and you will see more success by having an actionable plan ready to go! If you need help developing your marketing strategy or want to update and optimize your website to capitalize on the holidays this year, the team at EYStudios is ready to help!
Give us a call at 678-402-6378 today or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to start the conversation.