For the e-commerce stores, holiday months of November and December together generate at least 30% more revenue than all other months combined. This clearly shows why e-commerce stores are up on their toes at the end of the year. This is the most happening time of the year for the e-commerce industry. Naturally, they need to abolish all the stumbling blocks and difficulties that make business conversion difficult.
This is why it is important to optimize the e-commerce websites, e-commerce apps and also some strategic aspects to ensure optimum business conversion. Let’s explain these optimization tips one by one.
Optimizing Website For Holiday Season
First of all, e-commerce stores need to optimize their websites with appropriate features and functional capacity. Whether you are hiring eCommerce development services for the new web store starting this season or you are just trying to optimize your existing store, the below-mentioned tips will prove to be useful.
1. Boosting the Loading Speed
As most people access websites in their handheld devices now, users are more restless and least patient. A slight delay in loading time can drastically reduce website traffic. It has been studied that a couple of seconds delay in loading time can drive away 40% of website traffic. To tackle the issue first evaluate the loading time with a tool like Google’s Test My Site tool and then take the following measures for boosting loading speed.
- Use a content delivery network (CDN).
- Use Google’s AMP open-source AMP library for instant mobile loading.
- Resize the images to reduce the unnecessary load.
- For video files and animation use MPEG4 and for images use PNG file type.
2. Make the Checkout Process Better
Checkout is where actual business conversion takes place and so, it needs complete optimization. Here below are the key tips to improve the checkout process for your e-commerce website.
- Keep the number of steps at a minimum. Ideally, you should get everything done with a single step.
- Inform customers about the progress of the process with a bar or similar visual signal.
- Allow visitors to checkout as a guest without requiring to sign up.
- Always allow social media sign-up and sign-in to help users get things done quickly.
3. Make E-commerce Website Search Better
Most studies confirm that shoppers using search options are more likely to make purchases than others. This is why it is crucial to help visitors search your web store easily for the products they are looking for.
- For product pages offer all relevant and popular filtering options. You can hire Magento developer to customize the filter options.
- First, find out the “No Results Found” searches. You can use Google Analytics for the purpose.
- The “no results found” searches that generally occur due to misspelling of the terms should be accompanied with product options close to the search term or possible search options related to the misspelled terms.
4. Boost Website Security
Finally, building trust and reliability for your brand is most important and that is best done by making users feel safe with online transactions. Any comments pointing to the security risks of transactions can just be killing for your business prospect. Here are some tips to boost the security of e-commerce stores.
- Make sure your website has SSL certified hosting from a reputed vendor.
- Don’t share website data with third-party apps.
- Only allow third-party plugins and APIs from reputed and trusted developers and publishers.
Improving Shopping App Experience
Shoppers prefer the native experience of e-commerce mobile apps instead of the website simply because the former provides more ease of use and flexibility. But even the user experience of some apps can be utterly frustrating. Here are some useful tips to improve the shopping app experience.
- Provide shoppers both online and offline access to content for a flexible shopping experience. Allow them to browse offline and shop online.
- Build trust and reliability for your shopping app with the help of organic and real reviews that shows your products and services in a true perspective. Fake reviews are easily comprehended by shoppers and they easily bring down the reputation of a brand.
- Make use of localized marketing to the optimum level. As mobile apps are increasingly used by brands and consumers to connect in a need-based and contextual manner, eCommerce apps have to cater to specific product options and recommendations based on user context and location.
- Personalized mobile app user experience is another way to connect your shopper audience easily and most effectively. Based upon user interactions, earlier purchases, intent and demographic insights an e-commerce app can actually offer recommendations, make personalized notifications and help with layout and on-screen conversation for specific individuals.
- Omnichannel shopping experience by connecting all storefronts including physical stores, websites and mobile apps will provide better results in terms of business conversion than segregated channels under the same e-commerce brand. Allow customers to buy through an app and pick it up from a nearby store. Allow them to choose from nearby store or e-commerce websites and make payment through the mobile app using the same account.
Improving Marketing Strategies During Holiday Season
Finally, to boost business conversion through your eCommerce store, you need to adopt a solid marketing strategy. Since this time of the year, every dynamic of the regular business process changes dramatically, you need to be fully prepared to meet the evolving demands. Here below we explain some effective tips for e-commerce marketing strategy during the holiday season.
1. Efficient Shipping In Spite of Spike in Demands
Customers in this time of the year mainly shop keeping the festival in mind. From giving gifts to near and dear ones to making a purchase as a piece of memory for the occasion, online purchases during Christmas and New Year have more significance and carry more emotional attachment than purchases made year-round. Naturally, meeting delivery deadlines and delivering the products before the cut-off date is extremely important.
In case of shipping or delivery delay, the e-commerce store can actually face a lot of requests for order cancellation. Meeting delivery deadlines is doubly challenging on such occasions because the stores face a sharp spike in demand too. This is why a boost of efficiency in the delivery process is extremely important for e-commerce stores across the niches.
2. Free Shipping Offered as a Lucrative Selling Point
No customers feel obliged to pay the shipping charges and every one of them will be happy if you deliver the products at their doorstep without any shipping charges. On the other hand, by just dropping the shipping charges you actually provide better value than the brick and mortar stores selling the same stuff. So, if you want to give your festive season sales a boost, always avail free shipping of products.
3. Ad Campaign for Festive Season
It is common knowledge that high-value media ads that are quite expensive for the smaller brands and startups cannot be a good option to reach out to a wider audience during the festive season. Such ad campaigns can actually take away the entire profit margin of the business and even more.
So, for smaller brands social media ad campaigns, affiliate marketing and promotions through content marketing can be a good alternative. Social options such as Facebook ads and Instagram marketing are tremendously effective for many smaller business niches with a neat and specific target audience.
Exposure – especially during the holiday season – is a great thing, as it gets customers interested in buying from your online store. However, ads based on clicks and views can cause your ad spending to skyrocket during this time. It’s important to manage your advertising strategy over the holidays, and refrain from overstretching your budget. This is also a great time to switch from a cost-per-click or cost-per-mille advertising schedule to a cost-per-acquisition one and define the acquisition as a click to a product page.
4. Maintaining Enough Stocks and Inventory
During festive season any of your popular product ranges can suddenly get a lot of traction and business conversion than usual. But when the volume of order requests for any particular product literally flood your inbox, you need to be prepared with the adequate stock to meet the demands of the audience.
This is why keeping a sound stock and maintaining proper inventory to meet the demands flexibly is very important to capitalize on the demands.
5. Getting Ahead of Competition with Promotions and Offers
It is a common practice for the e-commerce marketers to roll out special offers, promotions, discounts and free gifts with purchases during the festive season. But while every marketer does the same thing to boost sales conversion, you need to make sure that the offers, discounts, and promotions are lucrative enough to stand the competition.
6. Market Content Concerning Festivals
Shoppers often visit websites for the express purpose of being knowledgeable about certain products and purchase options. By simply catering to customer needs with content featuring related products or topics, the marketers can easily draw attention to the product pages and encourage sales conversion. For instance, content on “7 Technology Gifts for Your Loved One This New Year” can allow you to feature a gadget item in the post and explain the value proportion.
The e-commerce marketing during the festive season altogether requires more hyper-active and responsive approach catering to consumer demands and business opportunities in the shortest possible time. The e-commerce store needs to aim all its guns towards sales.