Online sales are set to rise this Christmas. Is your website ready for the rush? Check out our handy guide to eCommerce for the festive season.

- Netbiz Guide To Ecommerce for the festive season

Much like winter in Game of Thrones, Christmas is coming. And making sure your business is prepared with a solid eCommerce website is one of the most important things you should be focusing on right now. 

Why? Because your customers are almost ready to shop until they drop online. And if you want them to hand over their hard earned cash, now is the time to get into their consciousness so you can strike while the iron is hot. 

Online shopping is more popular now than it has ever been. And your potential and existing customers have come to expect a certain experience when buying on the internet. For that reason, to snag those all important sales and conversions, your website needs to be primed and ready, alongside a strong marketing strategy. 

There’s Still Time – But Be Quick!

Christmas isn’t just about the 25th December anymore. Which presents more potential for sales across the coming months. There’s Black Friday (29th November) and Cyber Monday (2nd December), both of which are hugely popular for online sales. And then, after the big day itself, there’s the expectation of Boxing Day promotions. 

The good news is, you still have a little bit of time to spare to prepare for the upcoming festive period. Even better, we’ve put together a quick guide to Christmas eCommerce to give you an idea of what you need to do to boost conversions and win those all important sales in 2019. 

Optimise The Basics 

First thing’s first – prepare your website. Before you even begin thinking outside the box about promotions, design, email marketing or anything else, your site has to optimised to bring in the right kind of traffic, handle high volumes, process payments securely and deliver a seamless and quick user experience. 

That starts with a responsive design that works just as well for mobile users as it does for desktop. More of us are buying, on the go, from our smartphones. And the number one driving force behind buying online is convenience. For that reason, if your site is slow to load, difficult to navigate and restrictive in the types of payment methods accepted, you stand a good chance of losing a lot of potential customers, regardless of the quality of your product. 

67% of shoppers are more likely to buy from a website that is compatible with mobile devices

At the very least, when it comes to optimising your website for a better user experience, have a think about what prompts you to buy online. And if you find that your website isn’t meeting one of your criteria for buying, you can bet that it’s the same for your customers too…

Stand And Deliver 

Successful sales at Christmas time rely on timely delivery. And for that reason, it’s important to be transparent about shipping. If you offer delivery options on your website, ensure these are front and centre, alongside last order dates for delivery in time for Christmas. 

When visitors to your website see this, they are more likely to buy from you if they are given a guarantee they will get their products in good time. As we all know, there’s absolutely nothing worse than waiting anxiously for a gift to arrive or having to explain to a loved one why you’ve arrived empty handed. It doesn’t make for a great customer experience, either, which means no repeat business for you! 

While you’re at it with making your shipping details accessible and easy to understand (we recommend a banner on your homepage with last order dates for Christmas, at the very least), make sure your returns and exchange policy is easy to find, too. Both of these will overcome a lot of worries your customers may have about shopping with you and give them the confidence to click ‘Buy Now’. 

Decorate Your Shop Window 

When you’ve got the basics down – the fun really begins! Getting your promotions out there and in front of your customers is absolutely essential for generating awareness about your business. Of course, social media marketing will pay a huge part in this. But don’t forget to give your website a bit of a Yuletide makeover in anticipation, too. 

Banners and graphics on your homepage are essential to communicating special offers to your customers. And we recommend creating a dedicated Christmas landing page so customers can easily see what’s going down in your business, browse relevant products and benefit from your ongoing promotions. 

In recent years, ongoing sales and deals over Christmas have enjoyed great success. For example, online advent calendars can be a really fun way to draw customers to your website every day by offering them a chance to open a door and get their hands on exclusive discount codes and freebies. 

Supercharge Sales With Video Content

If content is king, then video is the crowning glory. Many recent studies have shown that product videos have the potential to increase sales by up to a whopping 144%! Whether it’s an explainer video, a demonstration or an unboxing, there is fantastic potential in video, and Christmas couldn’t be a better time to capitalise on that. 

72% of customers would rather learn about a product or service by video

Content marketing is huge right now, and video is a powerful tool in your armoury. Video content builds trust and boosts sales; it’s SEO friendly (you’re 53x more likely to show up 1st on Google if you have videos embedded in your website) and can be shared across social platforms and email campaigns to engage a wider audience. 

Online Presence – A Gift That Keeps On Giving

In the world of eCommerce, your website is the most important part of the customer experience. By creating a mobile responsive, quick to load and easy to use experience, you’ve won half the battle. When you’ve mastered this, your online presence (through social media, email marketing, content, etc) keeps you in the hearts and minds of potential customers, driving them both to your website (and your physical shop if you have one). 

If you’re hungry for a slice of that sweet, sweet eCommerce Christmas pudding but feel you need a little help in getting there, drop us a line! We’ve got SEO Gurus, Wizard Web Developers, Creative Copywriters and Marketing Mavericks on hand to help you make the most of your online presence through the festive period and beyond. 

 

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