E-commerce: how to succeed in your end of year sales?

by Brohems
E-commerce: how to succeed in your end of year sales?

The weeks before Christmas are particularly busy for e-merchants! After the rush of “Black Friday” and “Cyber ​​Monday”, the end-of-year celebrations are already looming.

It’s a very strategic period, because sales are exploding. This is reflected in December shipment volumes increasing by up to 274% the week before Christmas.

If it is beneficial to your turnover, this peak in sales at the end of the year requires preparation. It is essential to adopt an adequate sales and marketing strategy to meet the demands of customers (whose profiles are much broader). It also means managing your e-commerce logistics in an optimal way: a key success factor for your online store, and even more so at Christmas.

So, as this auspicious period approaches, our e-commerce experts give you 8 tips for successful end-of-year sales.

1. Optimize the mobile version of the e-commerce site

Mobile is at the heart of the purchasing process. From the first searches to the registration of the order, more and more consumers prefer their smartphone rather than a landline. The quality of the mobile experience must therefore be there to succeed in your end-of-year sales.

Thus, you must ensure that the mobile version of your e-commerce site works optimally. Adjustment of content, text size, placement of call-to-action buttons, display of images or videos, loading speed. Your online store must have an effective “responsive design” that meets expectations. Internet users.

If you are having difficulty adapting your e-commerce site, seek the help of an expert !

2. Add a “Gift Ideas” category to your online store

To boost your end-of-year sales, you can bet on the “gift ideas” category. If it is not yet part of your e-commerce site structure, this is the ideal time to add one.

You can add all the most popular products your business sells here. This makes it easier for Internet users to search, especially when they are short of ideas. At the same time, you improve the user experience (UX).

If your category of products or services allows it, why not also offer gift cards? They are popular gifts at Christmas, when you want to please, but don’t know what to give.

If you have a Shopify online store, this is an option that you can easily configure from your back office. You can also hire a Shopify expert to do it for you.

3. Prioritize a multi-channel approach to increase conversions 

The end of year celebrations are an opportunity to boost the promotion of your online store! Customers are more willing to shop than ever. If you are not looking to get people talking about you, you are bound to lose sales.

To increase conversions, we advise you to favor a multi-channel approach. In other words, position yourself on as many channels as possible to be sure of reaching your audience.

You can, for example:

  • Disseminate advertising campaigns on social networks (Social Ads) to promote your products or services,
  • Create personalized abandoned cart reminders for the holidays,
  • Work with popular content creators (influencer marketing),
  • Deploy remarketing campaigns to bring back Internet users after a first visit to your e-commerce site.

These strategies are valid for the rest of the year! At Christmas, you will simply adapt the communication to the seasonal desires and needs of your buyers. You can even significantly change your editorial line if this will allow you to get out of the game.

4. Adapt your communication to purchasing behavior

When you develop your communication strategy for the end of the year celebrations, forget your usual segmentation criteria! At this time, the profiles of your buyers, as well as their needs, are much broader than the rest of the year.

Let’s take an example: you sell cosmetics online, which are mainly aimed at a female clientele. So 95% of the time your buyers are women. But, at the end of the year, it is likely that your target will widen. It could also include men looking for gifts for their female circle.

It’s important to take this into account when crafting your marketing content. To succeed in your end-of-year sales, your messages will be significantly different!

5. Work on your content strategy to differentiate yourself

Competition on the Internet is already very intense in normal times. As the holidays approach, this is felt even more.

Your prospects and customers will be over-solicited by brands, which all have the same objective as you: to generate as much turnover as possible. It then becomes difficult to stand out.

To assert your competitive advantage and capture the attention of your audience, consider working on your content strategy. This will be particularly useful for:

  • Optimize the open rate of your marketing emails,
  • Share publications on social networks that challenge and seduce your audience,
  • Promote your offer to promote conversion.

Whether it’s in their inbox or on their social media, your potential buyers will spend mere seconds with your marketing content. It is therefore essential to highlight the elements that really interest them at this time (originality, discounts or exceptional prices, guaranteed delivery times, etc.).

Clearly, to succeed in your end-of-year sales, be direct and impactful, and clearly explain the benefit for the buyer!

6. Reassure on delivery times 

Before Christmas, this is the main fear of online shoppers : not receiving their gifts on time. As an e-merchant, you must therefore be reassured about delivery times! This is one of your priorities if you want to succeed in your year-end sales.

We recommend that you deploy an appropriate communication strategy. For example, the first half of December, you can ensure reassuring deadlines, with standard delivery. The week before Christmas, suggest express delivery instead to ensure your customers receive their order on time.

Finally, if you have a network of physical shops, you can, a few days before December 25, deploy a “web-to-store” strategy. Your customers buy online and pick up their orders in store: an effective way to avoid unpleasant surprises!

It is essential to anticipate the peak in sales at the end of the year. From December 14, the number of parcels in transit exploded. You must take this into account to avoid any delay in delivery: your customers will not forgive you for it, even if you are not directly responsible.

Be as transparent as possible, especially if you manually manage your shipments or if you have a reduced workforce. In this case, indicate on your e-commerce site the date until which your buyers can take advantage of guaranteed delivery before Christmas. They are thus notified when they place an order.

7. Anticipate return requests 

When you give gifts at Christmas, it’s hard to know if you’ll like it, and, unfortunately, almost half the time, you don’t. In 2021, 41% of French people resold one of their gifts on the Internet.

So, if you allow the exchange or the refund of the articles, it is an argument to absolutely value on your e-commerce site. Promoting an advantageous return policy has a direct impact on your sales, and not only at the end of the year. Your buyers expect to be able to easily return a product if it does not suit them (and ideally at no additional cost).

In addition, a well-thought-out return process greatly increases customer satisfaction, which benefits your brand image, as well as your loyalty strategy.

8. Take care of the quality of e-commerce customer service

Thanks to your year-end sales, you will potentially attract new customers. You will also, perhaps, retain those who were already part of your portfolio. To do this, nothing beats quality e-commerce customer service!

The requirements of online shoppers are relatively high. They are even more so at Christmas. They expect unfailing availability from you. You must be able to offer it to them, even if you are in a rush period.

To do this, you can first anticipate your buyers’ questions by updating your FAQ, or even your entire website. Check your time slots, your return policy, your general conditions of sale… Make sure that Internet users can easily find all the essential information related to your activity or your offer of products and services.

You can also use fast communication tools, such as instant messengers. These are increasingly popular with Internet users to communicate with brands. By using Messenger or WhatsApp (two applications from the Meta group), you can, for example, program automated responses. It is very useful to communicate effectively with your prospects and customers.

Finally, if possible, consider strengthening your teams. Whether you are a VSE or an SME, it is likely that you will feel the lack of staff as the end of year celebrations approach. You will be in order preparation, e-commerce logistics monitoring, inventory management.  All this in addition to customer service. It is therefore a problem to anticipate in order to succeed in your end-of-year sales!

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