Preparing your ecommerce website for the holidays

posted in: Business

The holiday season of 2015 is getting closer every minute. We are about 1 month away from the beginning of the busiest period of the year for retailers. In 2014, ecommerce sales had a record year and the expectations are that in this 2015, sales online are just going to keep increasing. With billions of dollars at stake, you want to be sure that your online store is ready for the most important season of the year.

Mobile ready, responsive, or whatever, but be mobile!

Not even going to try to convince you about the benefits of being mobile. Everyone holds a smartphone now, it is not 2008 when smartphones were still some sort of a high end thing. Smartphones and superphones are just phones now, it takes real effort to want to go back to a flip phone or a mobile that is just a phone. So, why is it that many ecommerce sites are still not mobile friendly? This year, mobile purchases are expected to grow in at least 32% compared to last year. This is almost double the growth since 2014. Get moving and hire someone to build your new web design with mobile in mind… now.

Test your Tech

Even though all websites are expected to perform perfectly without question, it doesn’t mean you should trust they will. Test your website and your ecommerce. Make sure everything is working 100% and have other people test it too. Don’t trust your IT guy or your developers (regardless of how good or nice they may be), test everything yourself. The worst thing that can happen is that you invest money in getting people to your e-store, they love the products and are ready to buy just to find out that your shopping cart is broken or your credit card processing is failing. Got an update pending, get it done. Spend a little time and money to ensure all is in working order.

Also, speed. Fast websites are a must. Your ecommerce web must be speedy or else. Users can’t wait, they want their products now and your website is slowing them down. Unless you are the only business in the world that sells blue widgets, it is easier to look for a faster competitor and buy it there. Don’t let that happen to you, optimize your website speed, it helps for conversion and SEO.

Start marketing today

A month is not nearly as much time as you think it is to prepare for a busy holiday season. Planning alone may take most of the time left. Get going right away and plan your campaigns and promotions for the whole season. Develop a pre-season campaign, some branding and awareness do help improve sales when the time comes.

If you haven’t worked on your SEO, do so immediately. PPC ads can be run to test promotions or advise people of a big launch coming. Why do you think important video games are launched in December? They are great holiday’s gifts for kids and teenagers (and many adults). Run a┬ápre-season campaign to make people aware of your business and when the time comes, turn it into a promotion and make the sales.

Are you Ready?

Do you think you are ready now? If the answer is no, don’t wait a second more and start working. Remember to test everything and make sure the website is up to snuff, it can be the difference between a happy new year and a sad one.