It's the most wonderful time of the year,
With the kids jingle belling,
And everyone telling you to be of good cheer,
It's the most wonderful time of the year.
You know it's the holiday season when you start hearing Christmas carols like this one from Andy Williams.
And with the holiday season fast approaching, we all know it's going to be the most prosperous time for brand owners like you!
And as for the consumers, they expect more this year...
More stores to open...
... products to rave about.
... lots of surprises.
We all look forward to an exciting holiday season.
We are anticipating a flurry of online sale activity as well.
And expect more ecommerce holiday sales!
You see, I found a couple of interesting holiday e-commerce predictions for 2021.
Check this out:
First, according to eMarketer, holiday ecommerce sales will grow by 11.3% this year to even reach a massive $207 billion sales!
Oh my! That's exciting.
Even so, as per Qubit, 28% of US and UK consumers are still planning to do more holiday online shopping this year than they did last year...
More thrill this year, right?
There's no doubt that online shopping is in the spotlight once again this festive season.
There is surely a buildup of excitement for customers...
And the pressure is ON for online entrepreneurs!
Well, as brand owners, you've got to zero in on your Holiday sales strategies and targets.
Prepare yourself for the most wonderful time of year!
First, how do you get started, and what to expect?
Are you ready for these? Let's get started.
Getting Ready For The Holidays
If you say you’re not yet ready for the holiday sales season, you better catch up.
Because this so-called grand period between Black Friday-Thanksgiving-to-New Year is nearing.
And online consumers are shifting their holiday spending to earlier in the season.
Holiday preparations are more important than ever for brand owners like you and me.
Because your holiday sales can be a big part of your annual revenue.
And it takes a little bit of planning and quite a lot of preparation
After all, you'll want to make the most out of this super anticipated time of the business year.
So, let's go!
Ecommerce Holiday 2021: What to Expect
Here are holiday trends to watch out for:
Expect to see more digital expansion with enhanced, more ecommerce-driven holiday shopping this season.
And that's not all...
There will be an increase in demand by online shoppers can result in even early buying activity.
So, you should begin connecting with both new and loyal customers via digital and mobile channels now.
Nowadays, more people are purchasing on mobile phones and on social apps.
Did you know that Grand View Research calculated that social ecommerce took 11% of global retail ecommerce sales last year with sales of $474 billion?
No wonder digital shopping has become more engaging with people looking to adapt much of the in-store experience in the comforts of their home.
Online shoppers can now get the most of customer experience via Facebook, Messenger, IG, and even TikTok.
So what are you waiting for...
Take this opportunity to create convenient, seamless multi-channel offerings that bring the store experience online.
Ecommerce Holiday Readiness 2021
You're probably wondering, why do you need to be ready this holiday season?
Holiday shopping this 2021 is expected to be record-breaking.
An estimated 7% to 9% increase is expected in sales during this busy season from last year, according to Deloitte.
But achieving that will require you to overcome some challenges. Such as consumer habits, supply chain issues, worker shortages, and limitations caused by the pandemic.
So if you are ready you are positioned for success this Holiday 2021.
Prepare yourself accordingly.
Let me show you...
How To Prepare Your Ecommerce Store For The Holidays?
1. Start Now
The earlier you start prepping for the season, the better.
But It's already the last quarter! Fret not.
It's never too late.
And ecommerce fever continues to rise.
And with more online stores mushrooming in the last quarter of the year, you need to get ready.
And getting ready for this busiest time of the retail year is a must.
This year online and onsite shoppers started their holiday shopping early.
Because nobody wants to be in a rush.
Everyone wants to bring the spirit of the holidays early into their homes.
The next one is very important...
2. Know Your Customers Holiday Behavior
More than ecommerce holiday sales, your customers should be your main focus.
Do you really know your customers?
How can you make them happy this holiday season?
Remember, understanding your customers' spending habits and behavior is key.
With customers' constantly changing behavior,
You should know their priorities.
You should know by now that they're more focused on:
Value For Money
Who wouldn't want to buy quality products at cheap prices?
We know it...
COVID-19 has reshaped consumers' expectations about what they want and need.
They pay more attention to value.
Budgets are being trimmed and priorities are being realigned.
The next one is a no-brainer...
You know consumers place high regard on convenience during the holidays. So So expect to have more online shoppers.
And they have started shopping even as early as September.
They're also into...
With the pandemic, people are keener to shop online.
Safety is their major concern.
The good news for ecommerce owners, more people will shop online this year.
Are you even ready?
In fairness, satisfying customers has become easier for most retailers in recent years.
They have gotten better at selling online.
3. Prepare Your Online Store
Make sure your online store is holiday season-ready.
Does your online store have a holiday look and feel?
Take a look at your online store...
Does it have brighter, colorful images, relevant videos, and upgraded themes?
Debutify can help upgrade your online store's themes to make it more holiday season-ready.
Make sure all of your products' details are updated and accurate.
You don't want to mislead buyers, especially the new ones with outdated info.
And take this, well-written product descriptions not only attract customers to buy but, they also produce more traffic to your online store if they are correctly optimized for search engines.
They also show in search engines' top results.
Another thing to do is...
4. Avoid Drastic Changes
Not now, please.
This is not the time for big risky moves.
What do I mean by this?
Avoid huge site modifications.
Just wait until after the holiday season, when the site's traffic has tamed down, and there are no time constraints.
Better be safe than sorry. - cliche, but true ?
5. Check Your Product Reviews
Make sure your product review strategy is not left behind.
And it is put in place.
How about your site's positive reviews... is it visible?
Because 93% of shoppers say online reviews have a positive influence on their buying decisions.
Product reviews can help you gain more customers and boost conversions.
This is also your chance to give your customers a better experience.
Do you know that approximately 20% of negative reviews cited customer service as the difference between a 5-star and a 1-star review?
So, look after your customers' concerns in the right way and within time.
6. Customer Experience Is Key
So, ensure every touchpoint you have with your customers is memorable
and will contribute to an excellent customer experience.
As an ecommerce business owner, make sure your marketing messages are tailored around your customer's convenience...
From the initial stage up to the checkout process.
Make sure you focus on fast delivery, promos, easy returns, and everything your customer wants.
Making your customers smile is essential this holiday season ?
So make sure you don't forget to...
7. Test Your Site
Busy online stores can sometimes get overloaded, especially during peak seasons.
It isn't very pleasant to check on your sales inventory on a Saturday morning, only to discover your payment portal shut down the night before.
I can almost hear you thinking…
I'm sure you don't want that to happen during the holidays, correct?
So ensure that everything works well in your online store.
Be very ready for the increased holiday traffic.
Your page's speed and its mobile website usability are important for search engine optimization.
Make sure everything runs smoothly.
I'm sure you don’t want to miss the next part…
8. Give Your Customers Flexible Shipping And Fulfillment Options
Plan your shipping and delivery well.
Can you afford to give free shipping?
How about a same-day delivery offer?
Do you prefer to handle shipping and fulfillment in-house?
Or do you prefer to do it with a third-party logistics partner?
Plan this part very well.
This can make or break your ecommerce holiday efforts.
You don't want your customers to receive their holiday orders after New Year, right?
Ensure a seamless shipping and fulfillment implementation.
Here’s the interesting part…
9. Make Use Of Paid Advertising
Don't get me wrong.
Organic traffic is great.
But, in a congested ecommerce market, paid advertising can boost your brand more.
Start with Facebook or Instagram Ads...
Spend a little bit of your time in search engine marketing and overall ecommerce rate optimization.
Additionally, investing in paid advertising in your multichannel can help drive more traffic, too.
It all boils down to this…
10. Make Your Holiday Marketing And Promotions Strategic And Fun
You can make your promotions exciting for the holiday season.
Make use of gift cards to upsell at checkout.
Offer free gift-wrapping service for a minimum amount spent.
Add a sense of urgency by giving limited-time offers.
Plan for some exciting holiday contests and surprise giveaways.
You can do these on your store’s website,
or you can use your social media platforms.
This way, you will not only be able to promote your products and holiday deals,
But you'll also be able to engage with your customers.
And stimulate a sense of belongingness around your brand.
Who doesn't want that? So, what are you waiting for...
Make Your Ecommerce Store Holiday Ready...
More than ever, this year will be a crucial holiday season for ecommerce business owners.
As more and more shops are opening up again,
Some holiday shoppers will probably shop in-store.
Even so, more people are still doing it online.
They expect a seamless shopping experience this year.
So make holiday shopping more enticing for online shoppers.
Make sure their needs are met- pre, mid, and post-sale.
Make them want to choose your ecommerce store over your competitors.
Welcome jolly holiday shoppers with ease by making your store holiday-ready.
And give that unforgettable delightful holiday cheer to your beloved customers!
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