September 2008

Getting Your Online Store Ready for the Holiday Season

As an online merchant, you understand that preparation for the holiday shopping season starts now! Mountain Media has come up with a few helpful tips for sprucing up your site to help attract and convert online holiday shoppers.

Site Features

Gift Certificate and Wish List are two site features that play a major role in holiday conversions (according to a Demandware study). 64 percent of those surveyed said gift certificates equaled 25 percent of their online purchases and half of those surveyed said they shopped using someone else's wish list. So, be sure to utilize these features on your site.

Product Page Essentials

52 percent of online shoppers say they spend about 6 minutes on a product page, so it's essential to have information that's engaging and comprehensive. To be competitive, you should offer: conditional free shipping on certain products, rebates, ratings & reviews and up-sell/cross-sell merchandising. Don't forget to include product descriptions that indicate why the item would make a good gift.

Navigation & Lifestyle Marketing

Remember to view your site from the gift giver's perspective. Are gift items easy to find? It's important to prominently promote creative gift ideas. For instance, create product categories like; Gift Ideas, Gifts under $50, Gifts under $100.

Lifestyle marketing is another merchandising technique used by major retailers that you should definitely consider. An example of lifestyle marketing would be, if you have a gardening site, promoting gifts for the "nature lover" or the "flower lover." A skincare site could offer gift ideas such as "for him," "for her," "for your mother," or "for your husband." History shows that suggestive marketing works.

Are you making the most of your discount and up selling features? Shoppers love to know they are getting a deal. Review using your Mountain Commerce up selling and cross selling features such as Specials, Features, Popular products, Related products and Also purchased products and implement some strategies.

Give Your Site a Festive Look

As shoppers search for the perfect gift, they are often attracted to sites that show the holiday spirit! A festive ad (especially one that promotes holiday discounts) can often be the differentiator that encourages a sale for you versus a competitor who has not adjusted their look for the holidays.

E-mail Marketing

On the e-mail marketing front, reminders are effective. 68 percent of consumers surveyed in an e-mail marketing study said they were prompted to visit a site after receiving an email from the shop owner. "Countdowns to Christmas" or "count down to last day of shipping" are creative marketing reminders that really work!

Code Validation

And finally, have you validated your site's code to check its XHTML 1.0 strict compliance? You may be due for a "Code tune-up" to clean up some errors to better ensure that your site gets preferred ranking in search engines. You can test the validity of your page's code by going to: http://validator.w3.org/

Eureka!

Did You Know?

Google Analytics Is An Amazing, FREE Tool For Website Traffic Analysis

This free service from Google will give you all the information you need about who is coming to your Web site and how they are getting there. This is a must have for any company that is serious about generating business from their Web site.


Getting Set Up With Google Analytics Is Easy

  1. Go to https://www.google.com/analytics/home/
  2. Create an account by clicking "Set Up Now"
  3. Login to Google Analytics and "Add Website Profile"
  4. Generate tracking code and paste into every page of your site. Mountain Commerce users should paste the tracking code into the "Global footer field" under preferences/text in the administrative tools.
Have a question? Speak with an expert. Call 1.877.583.0300 or Email us.