For e-commerce, Christmas is about much more than presents, decorations and eating turkey. For online retailers, the lead up to Christmas is the season that brings in much of the year’s revenue. But what is the best way to hook customers at Christmas? What strategies work best to ensure this holiday season is the best one yet for your eCommerce business?
Considering SEO, design and impulse buying, I’ve configured a list of 6 of the best tried and tested sales strategies for a very merry Christmas.
1. Be prepared for the last minute rush
Depending on your own gift-giving style, you may think that the majority of people get their shopping done weeks, if not months prior to the big day.
But studies by Salecycle found that peak Christmas spending happens between the 12-15th of December, with another huge boost as late as the 20th!
How to react?
With consumer trends suggesting customers are leaving their shopping until later, to make the most of these last-minute sales your online store better be prepared:
Have plenty of stock for the whole of December — Including after Christmas
Provide speedy, competitive delivery, sure to be there on time
Increase marketing closer to Christmas to target last-minute shoppers
2. Create time-sensitive offers
With the mounting price of Christmas, most consumers are on the lookout for the best deals and offer to save them cash when buying gifts.
That is why when trying to attract customers to your online store, it pays to be competitive.
Consider introducing unlockable deals that entice your consumer to spend a little more. Discover what your average spend is via your Google Analytics tool then offer those who spend 25% more free delivery. Perhaps even a free gift for customers who spend 50% more.
As well as unlockable deals, consider running time-sensitive offers that encourage your customers to buy quickly to avoid missing out. There’s nothing like a ticking clock to get people moving quickly, just check out this time-sensitive sales case study from shoe store Meat Packer.
3. Boost your sales with lead generation
With lead generation software, you can find the email addresses of decision makers and the phone numbers of relevant businesses who would be interested in what you have to offer. Aeroleads leaves you with a processed list of prospects with valid emails IDs, so you can start pitching to a targeted audience right away.
Studies show that you are 6x more likely to get a click-through from an email campaign than you are from a tweet (Source). In fact, email marketing drives more conversions than any other marketing channel, including search and social (Source). So what are you waiting for?
4. Find Christmas-specific keywords
To really make the most of your eCommerce site this Christmas you need to be investing time in some seasonal SEO.
With customers on the lookout for gifts for all their loved ones, it only makes sense that there would be a hike in Christmas related search terms. Use this to your advantage by researching keywords with tools such as Keyword Tool and Google Keywords relating to what you sell and fitting them naturally into your product descriptions.
Some general terms, which are a great place to get started are:
Gifts for her/him
Christmas ideas for mum/dad
Hanukkah or Kwanza
5. Streamline your checkout process
Ensure against abandoned baskets by making your checkout process as easy as possible.
Whether you are an established business or a startup, providing an easy to use secure payment page is the ultimate way to encourage your customers to follow through with their purchases. While utilizing integration techniques, such as adding Paypal to express your checkout is another great way to get your customers buying this Christmas.
When it comes to getting your customers through to the final stages of their payment, a good rule to live by is: Ask for less so they buy more. Kissmetrics have a great blog on other ways to streamline your checkout process.
6. Deck the halls
Sometimes getting your customers in prime Christmas buying mode is as simple as updating your theme to reflect the holiday season. By adding festive touches to your eCommerce site your shop will stand out from the crowd and may turn casual browsers into buying customers.
Shopify has a range of responsive Christmas themes available, while their blog features plenty of advice on how to inject your store with the festive spirit.
If you’d like to go a step further, consider creating a Christmas landing page. Specific landing pages really improve your user experience and help direct your customers to the products you know they’ll love.
Christmas can be a stressful time for anyone, but no one more than the e-commerce business owner. With the potential to up your selling by 100%, Christmas is the time to run your online store to the best of your ability. By being prepared, streamlining processes and creating deals your customers can’t resist, your eCommerce sales are sure to sparkle this Christmas.