How to prepare your eCommerce website for this festive season
With December just around the corner, now is an essential time to ensure your eCommerce website is ready for the Christmas rush.
After all, Christmas is the biggest consumer spending month of the year. In 2018, an estimated 165.8 million people shopped on Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday. This may come as no surprise when it’s estimated that people plan their Christmas shopping in October.
Ensuring your website is well-prepared, could mean your sales double or even triple during the festive season.
Here we’ve listed the key areas you should look at on your eCommerce website before you begin promoting your Christmas offers.
Test Your Checkout
According to Shopify, 56% of online shoppers abandon their online basket because they were presented with unexpected costs at the checkout.
Reviewing and auditing your checkout process is vital if you want to gain those Christmas conversions.
If your team are too close to the website, put your site through a focus group test – or send it to friends and family to make a dummy sale.
The last thing you want is to lose Christmas sales because you didn’t audit the very basic process of the checkout.
Increase Your Capacity
As a user, there’s nothing more frustrating than when a website crashes mid-purchase.
You don’t want your website to crash during those Christmas sales. Not only because you’ll lose the sale, but because of a crash signals to your user that your site cannot be trusted. This means the likelihood of them returning is very low.
During Christmas, it’s inevitable that you will see a spike in website visitors, which means your eCommerce site needs to be ready to handle the increase.
Check with your website host to understand how a traffic spike could impact both the website and the user experience.
Your eCommerce website should be mobile-friendly by now. It’s almost a cardinal sin not to have your website mobile responsive!
But the fact is, people are utilising mobile more than ever, and your webs needs to be available to those users.
According to Google, 52% of people say they’re less likely to re-engage with a brand following a bad mobile experience. Furthermore, it’s expected that 40% of all online sales during Christmas will be made via mobile devices.
If you haven’t updated your website to be mobile-friendly, now is the time. Otherwise, you’ll be waving goodbye to those sales.
Get the Festive Feel
Now we’re not telling you to re-design your entire eCommerce store just for Christmas, but a festive feel can go a long way in encouraging those sales.
Look to update your homepage with a Christmas vibe, and showcase your product offering in a seasonal way. Even the most prestigious, high-end brands transform their web build each season to give users an ‘experience’.
Remember, that just because your eCommerce store isn’t made of bricks and mortar, you still need to put effort into representing the seasons and showing your products in a relevant manner.
Your website is your shop window, so start treating it like one.
Utilise Email Newsletters
While many brands put a big focus on social media during the holiday season, don’t forget to utilise what you already have – emails!
According to research by Adobe, 71% of mobile purchases are influenced by emails from the retailer. This indicates that your strongest method of influence is that email list you’ve been creating.
Existing customers are your ‘quick win’ when it comes to eCommerce sales. They’ve most likely already engaged with your brand, and trust it, which means they’re closer to a conversion than a fresh visitor.
Craft emails to both new and existing site visitors, and personalise the emails to make people feel like they have truly received some festive help.
Christmas is a vital time for eCommerce websites due to the increase in consumer purchasing. Use this season to your advantage and don’t leave it too late to action these insights.