Christmas is one of those prime periods in eCommerce where you can really add some serious growth to your business. That means you cannot afford to leave it until the last minute.
For eCommerce, Christmas gets started when people go online in the hunt for Christmas gifts. Competition is strong and so those eCommerce sites that utilise a well-planned strategic plan will be the ones who receive the largest piece of the pie.
1) Page Optimisation
At Christmas, your efforts need to be increased. Remember, the level of competition during Christmas is especially high and even the tiniest error on your pages can move a possible customer away from your web site.
To make sure your pages are appropriately optimised to take care of the festive rush, you’ll want to be doing the following as a bare minimum.
a. On Page Content
Using keyword research allows you to target the right phrases that will draw in the most traffic from searches.
Once you have established the right keyword, return to your page and ensure it is reflected in the proper sections;
URL – This should include the exact phrase you are aiming for. You can change it to match if you are updating an old page but ensure you put in a 301 redirect at the same time.
Meta Description – Here’s your chance to inform your customer why they should order from you instead of your competitors. You’ll have around 155 characters to use so make them count! Point out your bargains, unique-selling points, and so on…
Page Title – You’ll have approximately 60-65 characters to play with here but at a minimum be sure that your phrase is at the beginning (i.e. Red Leather Handbags) and your brand is at the end.
Headings – Include just the keyword by itself in the H1 and have the keyword within a phrase in the H2
Imagery – Before posting any pictures, ensure the title is set to incorporate your key word. Once it is uploaded, you may use an Alt Text description which may also include the keyword
Linking – Go through your whole website and make sure, where appropriate, you are linking back to the optimised product page
Description – High calibre, useful information is important. Here you have to offer customers every piece of information they could possibly need.
b. Conversion Rate
There are many ways to improve the conversion rates of your product pages, but if you’re pressed for time, these are 3 useful things to ask when looking at the conversion rate of your product pages;
Is it easy to ascertain how you can add something to the shopping basket and how you proceed to the ordering stage?
Are any and all features that the customer may be interested in clearly visible on the page? Returns procedures, delivery details and support service options should all be easily visible
Have you included upsell or related products somewhere they are clear to see and can they be added quickly to the shopper’s shopping basket?
If the answer is ‘no’ to any one of these questions, then get them resolved before launching any Festive campaigns.
2) Mobile Responsive Design
If your website is not yet mobile responsive, it must be before any Christmas rush.
Far more consumers search via mobile phones than their personal computers which means you need to make sure your site functions across all platforms.
3) Discounts & Offers
Seasonal promotions are only successful if your customers know about them.
To help give your discounts the best chance of conversion, you’ll want to ensure that they are displayed prominently throughout your web site. The home page, category pages and all product pages relevant to the special offer definitely should display your special deals.
Also you can adapt the phrasing for every offer you drive out to catch the attention of a different sort of consumer at different stages of your strategy;
Planners – these people start searching early for Christmas products so kick off your offer close to September.
Bargain Hunters – they will want to spend as little as possible and enjoy maximum results. Go with offers including Buy One Get One Free, or Spend £XX to get 10% off, and push them out around October
Panic Shoppers – the eleventh hour shoppers will be more geared towards shipping and delivery then discounts. If you have the means, provide Next Day Delivery on special products and you can start this anytime from late November onwards.
4) Guided Selling
High street merchants employ something referred to as Guided Selling so that they can guide customers to their seasonal goods. Chain stores that may have shops throughout the country will have their Christmas display in the same general area, to ensure that no matter which store you enter, you can find what you’re searching for.
Online this can be used tactic to guide people to targeted areas of your website. Introducing a Christmas front end design or festive category in your product navigation will reveal your seasonal goods in an area that customers frequent and have learned to browse through.
Keep the seasonal category design the same as your regular ones. It can be tempting to mess around when making a specific Christmas category but you run the risk of confusing your website visitors who are accustomed to a certain style.
5) Grow for Christmas 2016
A productive 12 months in eCommerce can only be topped by the year that comes after. To guarantee you improve every year, you need to be in the position to measure your computer data.
Gather as much data that you can and share it with the team in order to get distinct points of views on the overall campaign. You can then use this information to prepare your business for the upcoming year.