It's going to be a tough holiday season for both companies and consumers, which is why it's important for businesses to build their festive strategy to provide their customers with the best customer experience during these uncertain times. In this blog, we offer you tips on how you can build a great strategy to retain your customer loyalty whilst getting ahead of your competitors.
For most brands and customers alike, the festive season brings both excitement and much anxiety. Buyers delight in the opportunity to buy gifts for their friends and family, yet experience plenty of stress over their budgets, shipping complications, and the dreaded experience of reaching out to customer service with any issues they may have.
E-commerce retailers are like their customers in many ways. They're excited about the big-spending season, providing shoppers with all their gifts to make their holidays special. However, they also face an extreme influx of shoppers looking for the best deals, whilst having to manage all the challenges behind the scenes as they may not have been as prepared as they thought.
The key to minimising these challenges is simply preparation. Seasonal trends in online shopping show us exactly how to strategise so we can continue to meet customers' needs and retain the much-needed loyalty during such unprecedented times. Understanding these essential insights and planning tips, means that any business can optimise their customer experiences, to reap the benefits into the new year.
Below are several steps that businesses can take to help build a festive strategy to maintain traffic and loyal customers during the crucial time:
Build Trust - During the Christmas season, consumers are bombarded with information. They often look for products they have no experience with or aren't very familiar with. It's this uncertainty that you'll need to eliminate.
A good way to remove this is by collecting good reviews from your other customers as early as possible. Let your existing buyers know how important their ratings are to you and other consumers. Another great way to build trust is responding as quickly as possible, whilst being friendly and offering precise solutions to any negative comments.
Win Loyal Customers - Buyers in the Christmas period are often first-time purchasers. Although most online retailers have many other topics in mind during the festive season, it's good to keep in mind that the first sale is both - the first and often the last opportunity to turn a new customer into a loyal repeat customer.
A great way to motivate consumers to continue to buy again is the offering of discounts, referrals, and loyalty rewards.
Optimise User Experience - During the festive season, you will experience excessive amounts of visitors to your business, new and old. To not drive the prospective customers away, you need to optimise your user experience by keeping the order process as simple as possible - the ordering process should not take more than just a few clicks.
In addition to this, one of the most popular ways to carry out online shopping is with a mobile device. So, getting your online site up to speed and optimised it extremely important.
Just as important is the speed of your site. One of the big advantages of online shopping is avoiding the long queues in store. Potential customers may react sensitively to delays in loading websites and apps, even the shortest loading times can create a negative impact on customer satisfaction. Google PageSpeed is a great tool to test how well your site is prepared for this challenge.
Encouragement - Basket abandonment is all too common for e-commerce brands, with rates reaching almost 60% according to a Fresh Relevance survey. To avoid this issue, retailers will need to work hard to do everything they can to close a deal through effective customer experience.
If a customer takes a while on certain pages or takes too long to complete a purchase, a gentle, automated nudge from a chatbot can help them over the finish line. Additionally, abandoned basket email campaigns can give your consumer a reminder of their baskets content - this can bring shippers back, whilst providing solutions for potentially lost sales. Offering festive deals and promotions can also bring their attention back to those items they considered purchasing.
Potential Sales Before/After Festive Season - It's widely known that the months of the Christmas season are the strongest in terms of making sales in the FMCG industry, especially in e-commerce. Halloween is typically the start of the high season for online stores. Before Christmas shopping begins, there are many events that can help to boost your sales ahead of the festive season - Grey Thursday, Black Friday and Cyber Monday are just a few that can help during November.
You could consider these days to be a test before the actual Christmas sales start. Many companies now feel as though these shopping days have become just as important as the Christmas business itself - they're now becoming the focus of attention. To guarantee a smooth operational flow, it's crucial to take the correct measures at the right time.
Prepare Your E-Commerce Fulfilment - To not be overwhelmed by the mass numbers of online orders at the end of the year, preparations need to be made before the floods of orders begin. Deliberated e-commerce fulfilment is the key to any success.
This will include the planning of increased temporary personnel requirements. more sales will translate into an increasing number of shipments that will require more helping hands to guarantee good-functioning e-commerce fulfilment. Packing and shipping orders is extremely time consuming. To avoid searching for overpriced alternatives at short notice or being unable to deliver at all - which is the worst-case scenario - always have a realistic plan and put this in place as early as possible.
During the Christmas season, many challenges and opportunities will arise in the FMCG industry, especially for e-commerce businesses. For most companies, this season will determine whether the year was a success or a failure. Not only this, the foundations for the months to come will already be set in stone. Here at Talented Recruitment Group, we believe that with these tips, they will help you to be well on your way to receiving positive results. Just by planning your seasonal strategy correctly, you can exhaust your full potential, which will boost your revenue successfully.