The 2020 Holiday Season is sure to be one like never before. Targeted eCommerce Holiday planning will go a long way to creating a successful selling season.
Covid-19 has had a dramatic effect on all aspects of our lives, and eCommerce is no exception. The Corona Virus lockdowns have spiked eCommerce sales and driven more customers online than ever before.
This insight confirms the necessity for store owners to have an effective eCommerce Holiday plan for this year’s massive shopping season.
When Does The Holiday Season Start?
You may have noticed that retail holiday promotions seem to start earlier every year, often showing up as early as October. With Black Friday advertisements beginning to show up at the start of November, by the first week of November, holiday selling and holiday shoppers, particularly online shoppers, seem to be in full gear.
As a business owner, the Holiday Season never really ends. To be fully prepared, Marketing Campaigns, distribution pipelines, shipping logistics, and staffing should be part of your annual calendar to prep in advance for the holiday season.
Preparing Your Holiday Strategy.
Is your customer service team ready?
With the added influx of new online shoppers, combined with the natural increase in online sales and traffic, your customer service staff will have their hands full answering questions about the shipping costs, product details, and taking phone orders. There is a real possibility that user experience, productivity, and profits can suffer.
If you have temporary staff, a great way to mitigate customer frustration and the learning curve is to create a detailed internal searchable company Wiki page. Online help docs are helpful for every company, but specifically, during crunch times and new hires, it’s priceless.
Is your inventory ready?
No one wants to have the problem of excess demand and no supply. Start your holiday season planning early to make sure your stocked up and ready for the extra holiday shoppers. If you are selling across multi-channels, make sure that your distribution center, 3PL, or Amazon fulfillment centers have the inventory they need.
Will your website handle the added traffic?
Review your previous year’s traffic and check with your web host to ensure that your site is scalable to handle a sudden influx of customers that could be 10-20 times your usual amount of online shoppers.
Find out if their system completes load testing to ensure that your bandwidth, site speed, and page load time will not decrease, both on your desktop and mobile site versions of your store. Technical problems are easy to avoid with a little holiday planning
Planning Your Holiday Marketing Strategy.
With traffic higher than ever and holiday shoppers ready to purchase Christmas gifts, this is the time to take full advantage of the added traffic. Make sure all of your holiday campaigns are in order so that you can boost your revenue, conversion rate, and average order value by pushing holiday promotions. Be sure you have a specific plan for Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
It’s generally a good idea to double your current email schedule or at least move to a new email once a week, whichever is greater. Make sure your email list is up to date. Ensure that your landing pages and product pages are specific to the promotion to improve your conversion rate and convert these additional sales. Also, be sure your website is accurately collecting customer emails while your traffic is high so that these customers can be part of your year-round marketing strategy.
If you’re promoting a Holiday Sale, make sure it is visible from every page of your website. Utilize slide outs and banners carefully so that customers will not have difficulty finding it and that the banners will not interfere with the regular customer experience.
Be sure you have been collecting your customer data on your website so that you can use retargeting to market to customers on Facebook, Instagram, and other social media platforms to target your returning customers. Keep to the rule of only boosting posts that are already viral, and always try to filter your regular advertisements to make the most of your marketing budget.
Don’t miss out on including this opportunity in your marketing efforts. Increase your revenue, brand awareness, and profitability with the perfect gift for your customers, that is easy for your team to process.
Planning your shipping Strategy.
Be sure your holiday shipping schedule is posted clearly on your site. Also, please post it in your FAQs, shipping detail pages, and order confirmation emails. Use our attached Holiday Shipping Season Calendar as a reference.
What Are The Important Holiday Season Dates?
- November 11th – Veterans Day, Singles Day
- November 14th – Diwali
- November 23rd – 30th Cyber Week
- November 27th – Black Friday
- November 30th – Cyber Monday
- December 7th – Green Monday
- December 10th – Hanukkah Begins
- December 11th – Last safe day for SurePost/SmartPost
- December 14th – Online sales typically start to slow down
- December 15th – Last Safe Day for First Class Mail
- December 18th – Last Safe Day for Priority Mail, FREE SHIPPING Day
- December 21st – Last Safe Day for Overnight Shipping
- December 24th – Christmas Eve
- December 25th – Christmas Day
- December 26th – Boxing Day, Kwanzaa Begins
- December 31st – New Years Eve
- January 1st – New Years Day
Getting your store, social media, and team organized early for the eCommerce holiday shopping season is time well spent.
If you need assistance with any of these issues or others, please reach out to our team at RhinoGroup.com
Be sure to download our eCommerce Holiday calendar to help plan out your best eCommerce holiday shopping season ever.