Because of the “Christmas creep” phenomenon and the fact that many retailers are starting Black Friday sales weeks before US Thanksgiving, many online retailers are feeling the pressure as holiday shoppers gear up to spend (hopefully!). If you have not yet optimized your site for the yuletide shopping season, there is still time to make some changes. Here are a few tips to help you make this season merry and profitable.
- Move your best sellers to the best spots. You want to highlight these and make them instantly and easily accessible because either people are looking specifically for it, or they are likely to buy it once they set eyes on it. Link to these from your banners or ads.
- Help the gift-giving clueless. Have special gift pages, such as “Top 10 Gifts for Him,” or “Top Gifts for Girls,” or “Top Gifts for the Impossible to Please.” Whatever. Tailor your lists, of course, to your products. If you have a blog, this is a great place to run these lists, and you can share them via Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest.
- Set the mood. Add holiday inspired graphics (with an easy hand), and don’t forget to optimize with holiday keywords, such as “Thanksgiving Day Sale,” or “Black Friday Savings.”
- Use Google Remarketing to try to appeal to former customers. Maybe someone’s abandoned a cart; maybe they’ve looked on your site but bounced. Reach out to them and pull them back in!
- Encourage customer ratings and reviews and post testimonials. Make sure the testimonial has either images or video and is connected to a real person. Anonymous words don’t mean much to online shoppers.
You can start with these right now, but if you want to get a jump on next year’s holiday planning, consider:
- Going through your content. If you have a lot of inventory, chances are that you are going to have some duplicate content. It’s hard not to, especially if you sell similar items, or the same items in different colors, for instance. You can overcome this by using canonical tags, writing original meta tags, or managing user-generated content on product pages.
- Investing in a trust badge.
- Offering a variety of ways to pay. This puts customers at ease and makes their experience much more convenient.
- Looking at speed. Make sure your site can handle increased holiday traffic without bogging down. Speed is a key factor in both rankings and conversion rates.
- Consider a live chat option or put into place a strong customer service feature.
Hopefully this holiday season is merry, bright, and without site crashes!