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How to get your website ready for the holiday sale season
The store windows are changing as well. This can only mean one thing: The holiday season is fast approaching! Major sales are coming up, including on Black Friday and New Years. You might not have a window in your business to decorate with fake snow if you’re a proud website proprietor. There are many simple steps that you can take to improve your online presence and keep your customers smiling and shopping. Here are our five steps to prepare your website for the holiday season.
First step: Create your business strategy
Are you sitting down? We have an amazing statistic for you. Last year, holiday season generated $106.14 billion in eCommerce sales. That number is expected rise to 123.73 trillion this year. This is a lot of money. This market is one you should definitely be tapping into, given the rise in online shopping during holidays. But how can you navigate your business through these turbulent waters?
Spend some time reviewing your business plan and looking at sales figures from the past year. Evaluate your inventory. What are you able to count on to perform well? Will your clients be quick to grab your products? What do you want to ‘get off of the shelf’ in the next year? After you have identified the items and services, it is time to plan your strategy for launching an advertising campaign. What discounts or customer perks are you able to afford? Major retailers such as Amazon offer free shipping to celebrate the holidays, and 88% of US consumers indicate that this incentive is a factor in their buying decision. This type of promotional offer can be expected in November and December. Remember to include this additional cost in your calculation of the discount you can offer for your products or services.
Once you have mapped out your offerings and the items that you wish to promote through advertising, you are ready to put your plan into practice.
Step 2: Update your offerings
It is worth looking at a few places on your website that you might not have thought of before ensuring your items and classes are available for the big day.
Complete your product and/or service descriptions: Review your service pages or product descriptions. You should ensure that they contain all the information that a customer might need. To give a visual representation of what you have in store, you can use your words or professional product photography. This is especially important because holiday shopping can be a lot of fun. Your gallery can be used to draw attention to this imagery and convert visitors into buyers. You can capture the experience of holding, wearing, experiencing, and drinking hot cocoa with your product or service …). It is also a good idea to accompany your booking descriptions with captivating photos. A customer might be choosing a pasta-making course for Mom. But the steaming linguine may look so tempting they decide to make it a Mom-and me activity.
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Change product and service information for your sale: This is Applying a discount on your items so that browsers can see the price difference, and then adding ‘Sale product ribbons marking their images. Your products and services will still appear on your website pages as normal. To give your products and services the holiday boost they need, be sure to include them in a new collection. This will make it clear for visitors to see where they should be when they visit your site. Don’t let your hard work go unused. Double-check that your payment options are working properly.
Presents don’t always have to be wrapped neatly in boxes these days. Many people are choosing to gift experiences instead of a box. If your business offers classes or workshops, make sure that your service pages are fully populated with detailed descriptions and current dates. You can offer a holiday package that includes a set of sessions at a discount that can be gifted to clients (hint, hint), by putting it on your page details. Your promotion should align with holiday gift giving preferences so that shoppers feel like they have found the best deal.
Search holiday-related keywords: Once your website is up to date with the latest Internet bargains, it’s time to ensure that people can find it when they want to shop online. SEO (search engine optimization) is the key to making this happen. SEO is a set of actions that you can take to make your website appear more prominently (or at a higher position) in search engine results pages. The first step is to determine the most common keywords that a user might type into the search box to find a business similar. Next, ensure that those words and phrases are included in the correct places on your website’s content. This is SEO-speak for a perfect match.
You might have made it to the search engine great list. If so, check out these DIY SEO Tips to boost your website. The holiday season brings a new vocabulary of keywords. Shoppers might now be able to narrow down their search results and find their exact intent by using a phrase (e.g. Cyber Monday) that includes the name of the sale. You can do some research to find out what other websites are selling, and you can use the tools in this guide to finding keywords. You can use these winners to enhance your SEO with keyword title tags and alt text. It may sound confusing, like “I need to put what, where?” There’s no reason to be alarmed. Wix SEO Wizard will go through your website and point out the elements that you need to adjust in order to achieve (SEO) gold.
Create holiday-themed blog content One place you can place your keywords in shining places is in your blog posts. If you don’t have a blog , it’s the perfect time to create one. Your SEO will be greatly aided by publishing new posts. This shows Google that you are the best place to find unique, valuable, and fresh content. Google is always looking for the best recommendations, and will consider your regular publishing and relevant material (as shown by incorporating keywords into your SEO settings and body content) as indicators that your site is a good recommendation.
You don’t have to be an award-winning writer to start a blog. Your readers are drawn to you because of your expertise and knowledge. So be generous. You can share ideas about how your product can be used or lifestyle tips for your students. You might consider creating a gift guide for the holidays to help your customers choose from different items from your collection. You can also make recommendations on which classes might be best suited for different personalities (meditation for the busy worker, cardio blast for those who are ambitious, kickboxing for tough cookie), This is a great way to anticipate what questions a visitor might have and encourage them to gift-give while they are on your website.
You don’t have to write. Instead, you can upload videos and images to make a showcase. Rockstar content is a great choice for holiday themes. People are always looking for the perfect gift and want to know as much as they can about what you’re selling. This is your opportunity to showcase your product and show how it can be used. You can show five scenarios that your handcrafted stationery cards could be used in, from the funny to the romantic, if you are selling it. Or perhaps you run a kickboxing gym? To entice viewers into purchasing a package, do a brief tutorial of the three basic moves.
Be trustworthy. You did it! You have a well-designed website that is up to date. It also has a trail for shoppers to follow to get to your site. How do you convert casual visitors into paying customers? The ability to anticipate potential customers’ needs and provide answers in easily accessible places on your website will determine the success of this transformation. In your product descriptions, include sizing charts as well as your return policy. If applicable, update your Contact Us and website footer with extended holiday hours. You should inform your customers about shipping costs early. If you offer free shipping or express delivery, make sure they know on your homepage. Do not assume that your visitors will be able to wait to check out the checkout page. A FAQ page can be created where all these technicalities can all be neatly formatted in one place.
Adding customer reviews is the final touch to win your shoppers’ confidence. 85% consumers trust reviews online more than tips from friends so it’s important to include customer reviews on your website. It’s easy to find the right app for you business. Not only does it make your site look great, but glowing testimonials can also help you to stand out. These testimonials are a great way to keep your visitors coming back to your site, rather than allowing them to wander off and search for reviews elsewhere. Womp womp. It’s easy to avoid this fate. All you have to do is add your app and reach out to your clients to request a review.
Optimize your mobile experience: These numbers are clear. Nearly 40% (of total eCommerce sales) were made via mobile devices in 2018, a figure that is expected to increase to 45% by 2019. It’s vital that your website displays are compatible with mobile devices, as many shoppers use their smartphones and tablets to shop. Wix makes it easy by creating a mobile-friendly version automatically of your desktop website. To ensure your mobile website is up-to-date, you can look through these best practice for mobile websites . Take note of details such as readability on smaller screens, highlighting contact information, and choosing a clean navigation menu that doesn’t leave users searching for the right button.
Step 3: Make your website festive
Be festive with your web design. There are many ways to add some cheer to your site to match the holiday’s visual aesthetics. You can add some seasonal-themed snowflake vector artwork to your homepage. These stunning illustrations are created by a talented team of designers and will instantly add style to your website. To frame your featured sale collection or bring a gift guide post to life, you can also look through the free ‘Holidays & Occasions’ images in the Wix Editor’s media manager.
You can also add a holiday badge from the Wix app market. These decals are great for wishing your visitors a happy season or announcing your sale. You can link the badge directly to your sale items for an added web-savvy touch. This is the online equivalent to a crowd-drawing shopfront display.
Add a Lightbox to your website: Now is the perfect time to add this feature. It sounds futuristic, we know that. A Lightbox, however, is an interactive pop-up message you can use to help your call for action. One option is to request that the Lightbox appear as soon as a visitor lands on your homepage. A Lightbox, which is a great way to ensure that all Internet traffic passes your site, can also be a good option, especially considering the holiday season. Wix Editor has many templates that can be used for this purpose. Click ‘Add’, hover your mouse over “Lightbox”, and drag and drop your preferred design onto your page. You can also customize the background image and colors to match the holiday theme and help customers visually link the sale to that time of year.
Step 4: Spread the word about your holiday campaign
Share the word on social media: You have stocked your website with sales and decorated in the most festive season-appropriate design. What other ways can you drive shoppers to your pages, besides optimizing for Google search? You can use social media! A star campaign is a combination of all your online efforts. Customers can stream directly from their social media accounts to your website and vice versa. This is how you increase sales and build community engagement. The first step is to ensure that your link to your website is everywhere. It should be included in your social media bio boxes. You should also regularly update channels that contain content from your site (like your blog posts). Followers shouldn’t have to look for the link between your social media presence and where they can start shopping.
Next, get active on your social media channels to build excitement for the big sale. Point them to your website to help them navigate to their shopping carts. To get your followers excited, you can create a holiday-themed logo, or hold a contest with a prize like a new product, or a discount code. There are many other creative marketing options for the holiday season.
Your Instagram Feed can be integrated onto your website to tie everything together. Your visitors will be able to’shop’ the Feed by linking each product to its corresponding page on your website. This Feed can be used to encourage participants to user-generated content campaigns to visit your site to find another location where they are featured. This small action can have a huge impact. This simple action drives more traffic to your site, and it creates a visual testimonial page that welcomes potential customers with smiling faces. This is the best way to get publicity and credibility boosters.
Add a Social bar to your website. This will allow shoppers to easily visit your social channels and learn more about you brand before they make a purchase decision. It should be placed in the footer of your website so that it is always easily accessible. To increase your reach, you can share blog posts via social media and encourage followers to do so. Are you looking for ways to maximize your promotion efforts? These guerrilla marketing ideas will inspire you.
Spread holiday cheer through email marketing: Email marketing is another tactic to build a loyal customer base and prepare them for the sales season. Wix email marketing allows you to send beautifully designed newsletters directly to your subscribers. You can include previews of sales items, links to your class promo video or gift guide blog post, as well as exclusive discount codes for your loyal subscribers. You have a lot more creative control with this tool. Discuss your business plan with the team to determine what perks you can offer.
Be available to your website traffic: Soon, your sale will go live. Your followers have already marked their calendars. You have placed the appropriate sign posts on your social media channels and in your SEO settings. This will direct web traffic to your virtual aisles. You can’t just sit back and watch the sales roll in. There is one last critical feature that your website needs. Customers expect a live chat option on their website. This tool is a great way to engage customers who need quick answers to specific questions before they make a purchase. It also helps you avoid losing potential customers by preventing them from abandoning their cart if they don’t get an answer immediately.
Automate your sales process to make this work for you. You can use automations for email notifications whenever a visitor completes an action on your website, such as logging in, purchasing, or filling out a contact form. You can also choose messages to be sent via Wix Chat to visitors in response to specific actions they take on your site. This could include greeting them upon their entry and thanking them for making a purchase. You will be able to provide top-notch customer service when it comes time to sell.
Step five: Peer review
You made it! Your website looks amazing and is now ready to go out to the rest of the world. We’re sure you have been closely following this list and noticed a lot of your site lately. Give yourself some time to relax and share the link with trusted family members, friends, and business partners. It will help you spot spelling errors that are not obvious to you, and it will also help you identify areas that might be easier for the average user. Your review committee can test functions such as payment, clicking on Holiday Badges or Lightbox buttons to ensure that they work properly, and adding items into their cart. You will want to hear from your proud parent if there is a problem with your page and not from frustrated customers. These examples of eCommerce websites are sure to inspire you. Happy Holidays!