Preparing for the Holiday Rush

The holiday season may seem like it’s still far off, but now is the time to prepare for it by making sure your ecommerce site is ready capitalize on the increased business flow. Much of that increased traffic may come from new customers, so use these tips to ensure that your website and sales process makes a good impression and encourages those customers to return.

Communicate with your customers on multiple fronts

Customers make purchasing decisions based on information available, so make sure that your website and marketing efforts are communicating as much as possible. Prepare to update product feeds regularly so customers can see the latest pricing and inventory availability. If you will offer any kind of discounts or specials, include that information in your ads, email marketing, and social media posts.

Optimize your site’s mobile experience

If you haven’t already, make sure that your website and marketing emails are optimized for mobile devices. On major sales holidays, like Cyber Monday, you can expect your ecommerce site’s mobile traffic to soar. By optimizing for mobile, you’ll ensure that your site is easy to buy from. Otherwise, you’ll just be encouraging cart abandonment.

Check out your checkout

Checkout pages are where ecommerce customers tend to bounce the most. If buying something from your website is cumbersome for either desktop or mobile users, you should rethink your website’s checkout process. Simplicity is the name of the game - optimize your form fields so they require less time and effort to fill out, incorporate automated error handling to avoid user frustration, and reconsider forced account creation if you're currently using it.

Consider new payment options

The more payment options you offer, the better chance you have of making a sale. Consider adding PayPal, Amazon Payments, ApplePay, Google Wallet etc. in addition to traditional credit cards. Many alternative payment services are free, but some require transaction or subscription fees – so choose ones that you’ll feel comfortable processing payments for. Additionally, you should ask your customers which alternative payments they would like to see on your site so you can cater your offerings to them.

Prepare to fight fraud

Along with the increase in purchases, ecommerce fraud tends to increase during sales holidays. Stay up-to-date on the latest trends in fraud, as well as fraud-fighting technology. You should also review the fraud data your team or vendor has accrued during past holidays to find out which areas require the most focus.

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