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Holiday Season eCommerce Marketing Strategies

Why are merchants with e-commerce experience preparing for holiday sales now ?

More than eight out of ten holiday-season shoppers will look for gifts and gift ideas on the internet before making a purchase, creating a significant opportunity for online shop owners. But to cash in on holiday sales, many merchants need to begin executing coordinated marketing campaigns now.

It is not too early to start preparing for the holiday 2020 shopping season that begins in late September and, in some cases, goes even beyond December 25. It is one thing for a shop owner to recognize the need to plan for the holiday season, and something completely different to know which marketing strategies and tactics to employ.

How should you promote for holiday 2020?

holiday season tips

Although there are certainly hundreds of viable ways to attract new buyers and make holiday sales this year, three particular strategies may have the most promise for small and mid-sized online shop owners. Here are 3 holiday Ecommerce Marketing Strategies:

  • Pay-per-click advertising
  • Inbound marketing
  • Marketing to known buyers

These strategies are either relatively inexpensive or can be held to a budget. Each should encourage site traffic, and each can be a source of timely sales.

Pay-per-click Advertising

The first method that online shop owners will certainly want to employ is pay-per-click advertising. This form of promotion may cost relatively more and have relatively lower conversion rates that email or inbound marketing, but for the holiday season it really should be part of the mix.

Consider beginning small, keyword testing PPC campaigns now. Pay-per-click marketing requires a significant amount of monitoring, as you modify keywords, experiment with ad text and images, and refocus customer targets.

Although, you’re almost certainly going to want to include Google Ads in the mix, look for alternative networks too. For example, Facebook promoted posts can be great converters and tend to have the residual effect of increasing the number of Facebook followers.

Inbound Marketing

Inbound marketing seeks to attract new buyers with content like blog posts, videos, or other helpful material.

The concept is simple, add content to your ecommerce site that will attract shoppers from search engines and word of mouth. The idea is that a significant number of your potential buyers are going to use search engines or recommendations from friends to find gift ideas or even a dish recipe.

For example, you could publish a blog post about the five times when it is appropriate to give cake as a holiday 2020 present, or a video about how to select gear for the scuba divers on your holiday shopping list. This content, published in September, would turn up in search results in November or December.

SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is both a fine art and simple common sense. It can be a trial and error practice for some business owners as each business and website is different – and owners of each site may set-up their sites differently. By following the basic guidelines and making full use of the SEO capabilities in ShopFactory - you can eliminate the trial and error to get your website indexed and properly ranked on the search engines.

Marketing to Known buyers

Loyal, repeat, known buyers are usually a shop owner's best revenue source. Almost 50 % of retail ecommerce revenue comes from returning or repeat shoppers. And these returning shoppers typically only represent about 8 percent of site visitors. Returning shoppers will spend between three and five times as much per visit as new buyers.

To address known buyers, aim marketing efforts at email, social media, and, if you have subscribers, text messaging.

For email, plan a series of emails starting now that seek to achieve one of three goals: (1) Encourage shoppers to look for pre-holiday clearance; (2) Introduce or preview new or featured products; and (3) Encourage engagement with blogs and social media content that will be a hub of holiday suggestions.

For blogs and social media, ask known buyers that use Facebook or Pinterest to start creating wish lists of products they would like to receive as gifts this holiday 2020. Also ask them to offer gift ideas and suggestions. Aggregate the best wish lists and gift suggestions into blog posts.

Text messaging is a significant opportunity for shop owners. Shoppers will typically respond to a text message in about 90 seconds. Imagine what that might mean for a retailer communicating exclusive Black Friday or Cyber Monday offers? If you have a text list, plan a weekly, exclusive holiday offer in the second half of November and early part of December. If you don’t have an opt-in text-messaging list, you might start building one.

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