It’s beginning to look a lot like…
This Holiday season, American consumers are expected to spend a staggering $105 billion online. Not only is that an overwhelming number, but it represents an 8% increase from 2014, according to National Retail Federation data.
That $105 billion breaks down to around $805 per person, and represents 16.7% of the $630 billion that will be spent in November and December by American shoppers.
According to another recent study, this one by Deloitte (that polled more than 4,000 U.S. consumers), nearly 70% of all consumers are expected to “web-room,” which means they will browse items that catch their fancy online before making a physical, in-store purchase. Overall, more than 80% of consumers are planning on doing some web research before plunking down their hard-earned cash.
Bottom line: This Holiday season, American consumers are planning on doing a heck of a lot of their Holiday shopping online. And if you want your business to succeed, you’d better be ready to accommodate them on your site.
But why stop…then? Or there? If you do the job right, you can keep your customers coming back (and back, and back) to buy online – well past the Holiday season.
Here are some helpful tips to keep your customers returning to do more online shopping at your site…well after the Holiday season has ended:
*Promote gift cards: Gift cards make a great gifting alternative during the Holidays. More and more of a mainstay in Holiday gift giving, they make the perfect stocking stuffer too. Make sure you have a variety of gift cards to offer your customers. And make sure they are available for purchase online.
*Offer extra reward points: During the Holiday season, why not offer your customers extra reward points? This will give them added incentive to shop with you online now – and prime the pump for them to return to do more of the same in the future. It’s a win-win, really.
*Extend + promote your return policy: If your normal return policy is less than 30 days, why not extend a little “gift” to your consumers this Holiday season? Why not allow them a full 30 days during the months of November and December? After all, not everyone is thrilled with their Holiday gifts. Your customers will appreciate this gesture. And they’ll remember you better down the line.
*Offer a gift-wrapping service: In a nod to a more civil and formal bygone era, this is a nice, classy, memorable, and personal touch that can go a long way towards pleasing your customers. It’s a brilliant and warm way of blending the old with the new. Why not try it out?
*Suggest Add-ons + accessories: During the online purchase process on your site, suggest additional accessories and “add-ons” at the checkout phase during the Holidays. It’s ideal to accompany these suggestions with strong, clear messaging such as, “Don’t forget to add on these great accessories…” or “You might also enjoy the following items…”
*Add the ability to blind-purchase a random item: This is a fun feature you can “add on” for the Holidays. You can base it on price range, gender, age, and other search factors. This can also work very well for “white elephant”-style gift exchanges.
These are just a few ideas to help you optimize and enhance the online shopping experience for your customers this Holiday season. If you need help implementing any of these ideas, or are looking to build the e-commerce system that fits you and your company best, contact us here at Imagination Media. We offer a wide range of e-commerce development services and solutions, and would love to work with you!