The holiday season is officially here. This may have you excited, frightened, or a combination of both. With seasonal traffic set to spike and an increase in e-commerce sales opportunities, this is the perfect time to invest in conversion rate optimization. Last year, online sales during the holidays increased by 13 percent, and retailers are anticipating even more growth this year.
With 92 percent of holiday shoppers either researching or purchasing products online, it’s clear that the demand is there. Driving this traffic to convert and purchase should be at the top of your holiday marketing checklist.
Here are five tips to help increase e-commerce sales conversions this holiday season.
1. Use email to drive traffic and sales
Etsy isn’t wasting any time with holiday emails. Check the date: September 23.
Email is still the best channel for directly reaching individuals and driving sales. Email converts at a 4 times higher rate than any other source and continues to be the channel of choice for e-commerce.
Eight in 10 shoppers who sign up for brand emails will make a purchase based on what they receive in their inbox (Source). Be sure to mix things up. Send a mixture of helpful, fun content, holiday promotions, and product suggestions.
You’re dealing with a lot of competition and holiday shoppers are getting started earlier every year so this will help your emails stand out in crowded inboxes.
A study by Google found that 48 percent of shoppers have the majority of their holiday shopping completed before Cyber Monday. Some shoppers even start earlier. 25 percent of holiday shoppers will purchase an item before Halloween. Get your holiday emails out soon.
Check out the 2016 Holiday Marketing Calendar for E-commerce Promotions for key sales dates, promotional opportunities, and helpful tips.
2. Engage the increasing amount of mobile visitors
While desktop e-commerce continues to be the method of choice for purchasing, mobile is trending up. Mobile commerce sales during the holidays increased by 59 percent last holiday season.
There are a couple of key reasons why a mobile strategy is important this holiday season. First, your marketing emails will primarily be opened on a mobile device, which means a significant portion of your web traffic will also be mobile.
Second, the buyer’s journey today bounces around between different devices. This means that a visitor may research products on their cell phone, continue to browse on a tablet, and ultimately purchase on their laptop.
You most likely already have a mobile-friendly website (and if you don’t, you should!) but this is a friendly reminder that more people than ever will be viewing what you have to offer on their phones this holiday season. At the very least, look to capture emails from mobile visitors. Hopefully, you can drive some mobile sales as well.
Concerned about using pop ups on your mobile site? You don’t need to worry. For reassurance, here’s what you need to know about Google’s 2017 update on mobile pop-ups.
3. Use e-commerce promotions to drive sales and increase order size
Promotions are an effective way to drive sales year round, but when the holiday season rolls around, promotions are an absolute necessity. To keep things simple, here are several e-commerce promotions that are perfect for driving holiday sales.
Free shipping is by far the biggest sales driver during the holidays, with 73 percent of online shoppers naming it their #1 reason for making a purchase. Running a free shipping promotion will close more holiday sales because you’re providing the exact value that the majority of your shoppers want.
Free shipping with thresholds
To make free shipping accessible for your business and to drive larger orders, consider shipping thresholds like “Free Shipping on orders of $75 or more.” A study found that 39 percent of customers would purchase enough to get free shipping. A promotion like this allows you to both offer free shipping and incentivize shoppers to buy more. For more valuable information on free shipping, check out the study by Harris Interactive and UPS.
Big discounts on sales holidays
With big shopping days like Black Friday and Cyber Monday coming up, your shoppers are most likely expecting serious savings. So that’s when you should hit your visitors with your best deals and discounts. Based on a study, 94 percent of consumers stated that discounts will be important to their purchasing decisions during the holiday season.
Again, you need to make it very easy for shoppers to make a purchasing decision by providing them with offers they actually want.
4. Target specific audiences to drive more conversions
Targeted offer for cart abandoners.
You’ve got your holiday promotions lined up—now you have to present your offers to the right visitors. Rather than review every way that you can target shoppers, we’re going to focus on three key tactics.
First, you want to appeal to first time shoppers. Engage these new visitors within 15 seconds of their visit using an attractive offer for free shipping or a discount. Since 55 percent of website visitors leave within 15 seconds of their visit, we want to present the offer early on. This way, the promotion gets maximum exposure and increases your chances of converting each visitor.
Repeat visitors and customers
Second, we want to show our repeat visitors and customers some love with an exclusive offer. These are shoppers that are much more likely to purchase because they have either seen your products or bought from you in the past.
Build up a feeling of exclusivity with promotional copy like “Welcome Back! Here’s a Discount.” Exclusive offers show that you truly value your repeat customers and this builds brand loyalty.
Third, we want to turn those cart abandoners into paying customers. To do this, we want to go to the source of the problem, cart and checkout pages. Engage shoppers who attempt to leave the cart or checkout pages with an exclusive exit offer.
Instead of requiring an email to receive the offer, it’s best to just give the shopper the promo code. This way, we are able to eliminate barriers and the shopper is able to redeem the offer within the cart and checkout pages.
5. Don’t forget about last-minute shoppers and post-holiday shoppers
There are procrastinators out there, and it’s important to cater the shopping experience to them, especially when it’s getting close to Christmas. Here are three simple holiday promotions you should use to drive last-minute sales.
January is also an interesting month for holiday sales. You’ll be receiving website traffic for gift card redemptions, gift exchanges, and post-holiday sales. This is an opportunity to engage shoppers with sales promotions, especially if you have excess inventory that you’re looking to get rid of.
Making holiday marketing easy
The holidays are your biggest opportunity to generate sales. It’s also the busiest time of the year, so rather than trying to do everything in your power to get the most out of the season, focus on a few key areas that will get you results. Use these tips to provide a better shopping experience and to maximize your holiday sales revenue.
This article originally appeared in Justuno Blog.
This article was written by Grant Thomas from Business2Community and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.