Online spending increased 15% for 2012, with 139.4 million people making online purchases during the Black Friday weekend alone. For Q4 2013, more than half of online shoppers are already shopping for the holiday — and have been doing so since April!
More people are shopping online for Q4 2013. Is your online store ready for the holiday season?
Here are three ecommerce areas you can maximize to increase online sales for your ecommerce store.
Mobile Ecommerce For Q4 2013
Mobile shopping is the new frontier of online shopping. 79% of smartphone users use their devices to shop online. 17% of those shop using their phones at least once a week.
To get ready for Q4, here are some mobile preparation steps for your online store:
1. Before you do anything else, visit Google Analytics to get a sense of how much mobile traffic your online store gets.
3. Make sure your mobile site is designed for mobile users. Consider how mobile users are different than traditional online shoppers.
Mobile users are less patient (want fast site load time, etc.), while also being more inclined to research products online. Mobile users will research products in store vs. online shoppers who are more likely to purchase online (the same place they do research).
4. Consider a responsive mobile theme to modify layout for devices. If you are using WordPress, a great mobile plugin for responsive design is Duda Mobile.
5. Think about promotions/sales specific to mobile users. Make your mobile users feel special with a % off coupon or QR code, or follow up with email marketing.
6. Determine whether mobile ads are a good investment for your online store.
7. Remarket to mobile shoppers using email marketing, paid ads and social media to keep your brand top of mind and encourage additional sales.
Video Ecommerce For Q4 2013
70% of online store's feature product videos, and 90% of online shoppers say they find product vidoes helpful during a purchase.
To get ready for Q4, here are some video tips for your online store:
1. Consider featuring product videos on your website, store blog and social sites. Consider using YouTube, Wistia or sites like Vine.
2. Always use analytics to back your videos with data. Analytics will help you determine who is watching your videos, for how long and where they clicked.
3. Remember your video audience. Video viewers are two degrees less patient than online shoppers. Videos should be brief: less than five minutes, and ideally less than one minute (varying by medium). Think about what you link in your video, intro and outro frames, text and other considerations your video viewers will appreciate.
4. For appropriate videos, consider using a sale, promotion or free giveaway to generate interest, shares and more website traffic.
Ecommerce Shipping For Q4 2013
Shipping is a large consideration for online shoppers. If shipping is too expensive shoppers will shop elsewhere or in store.
To get ready for Q4, here are some shipping best practices for your online store:
1. Feature free shipping. Nearly half of online shoppers leave sites without free shipping. If you can afford to offer free shipping, do it.
2. If you can't afford to offer free shipping, try a lower flat rate shipping like Overstock.com.
3. Use shipping bundle deals for purchases over a certain price. This can help increase your average order value and total items purchased.
4. Offer a % off shipping code. Shoppers who use a promotion code feel like they've earned something, which gives them the positive feeling when shopping on your site.
5. Implement shipping sales surrounding important holiday dates before, during and after the Q4 holiday.
These are just some of the areas you can address for Q4 to get more sales on your online store. Investigate and optimize email marketing, holiday sales, local optimization, SEO, social and other areas of your online store to maximize your online sales.
Mary Weinstein is Director of Content at CPC Strategy. Mary is an ecommerce nerd and an expert in paid search, Google Shopping, content marketing, and all things online marketing. You can reach out to Mary @merrywhy.