Online shopping only continues to grow globally, exhibited by the most recent IBM Digital Analytics Benchmark Report which estimates the week leading to Mother’s Day in the United States alone, produced an approximately 15% increase in year-over-year web sales.
With Father’s Day only a month away, consumers will be scouring the internet to find the best deals and products, to show their dads, husbands and father in-laws how much they love them. As more shoppers turn online to source the perfect gift, it has become essential for retailers to enhance their websites and revamp their marketing initiatives in order to enhance the user experience and drive sales and conversions. If retailers wish to capture consumers money from the influx of traffic expected to be generated for this holiday, there are a few critical areas of focus for retailers.
As shown in our recent infographic, online shoppers indicated the most important factors when making a purchase decision were reviews, convenience, promotions and discounts. Many retailers are wondering if they will see the same trend of consumer shopping behavior for Father’s Day, and how they can use this opportunity to increase sales, engage customers and develop a loyal customer base.
Looking forward to Father’s Day, how can eCommerce retailers capitalize on these trends? Below, we have outlined 4 simple tips that outline how to maximize both your website functionality as well as your marketing campaigns, in order to make the most of this holiday.
1. Offer Product Reviews
Highlight your best products by offering product reviews on targeted items. Consumers doing their Father’s Day shopping online are more likely to purchase an unfamiliar product or service if the company provides product reviews.
Reviews allow you to have an honest conversation with a shopper. By including a balance of both positive and negative reviews, shoppers are often more inclined to trust the highlighted reviews and see it as a credible form of advertising. In fact 71% of online shoppers agree that product reviews make them more comfortable with their purchase.
Product reviews affect conversion rates. Behind on-site search functionality, they are viewed as the second most important search feature and provide an increase in customer loyalty and consistently contribute to higher purchase satisfaction.
2. Offer Promotions and Discounts
Make use of your loyal customer base and email out discounts or shipping offers to your targeted market. Create great offers specific to the affiliate channel and use engaging titles to captivate the recipients.
Reinforce the amount of shopping days left, and why not include a gift guide, highlighting the best gifts to surprise dad with. This is a great way to entice customers to visit your site – flash sales offer a reason for them to visit during a particular time.
Discounted delivery is another way to entice your customers to make purchases. Whether it be through coupons, utilize your email marketing campaigns to reach your target market and generate a buzz surrounding the holiday.
Holiday email marketing campaigns often have a higher click through and open rate than any other time of the year. Put together a list of products and offer “Top picks for Dad” and consider using promotional offers with an expiry date – ie. Order before June 10th for a 15% discount, or offer free shipping until a certain date. These discounts or coupons entice a customer to make a more rash purchase. By limiting deals and creating a sense of urgency you can encourage potential buyers to make a purchase decision.
3. Optimize Your Site for Mobile
It is 2015, and many consumers are not shopping from a desktop anymore, but instead choosing to do it from a smartphones or tablet devices. As the most recent report from IBM indicates, sales and traffic from mobile devices is on the rise. Updating your site with a mobile responsive design is critical to capture this market. By providing a responsive design on smartphones and tablets, you show your customers you care about their shopping experience.
4. Optimize Your On-Site Search
Help your customers find what they are looking for with ease. Offering optimized on-site search, can help guide shoppers to a sale more quickly. When consumers visit your site, they often have a particular product in mind. Whether they are looking for a green tie, or a large coffee mug, shoppers will be guided to the product with ease when using on-site search.
An advanced search functionality also provides shoppers with options. For example, if a shoppers searches your site using a generic term, they will be presented with options and the ability to narrow their search using dynamic filters.
In sum, many eCommerce retailers are in an ideal position to create customer engagement programs that foster loyalty and maximize profitability. Over the next few weeks, many online retailers will see an influx of business coming their way.
Mark June 21st on your calendar. With exactly one month until Father’s Day 2015, now is the perfect time to make a few simple changes in order to reap the benefits of a busy shopping time. By focusing on these simple tips, you can make the most of this upcoming holiday.