Here at FutureNow we are celebrating the holidays by offering you 12 days of holiday optimization. Yup, you heard me right. Free tips to easily improve your online performance for 12 days straight! For the next 12 days, we are going to guide you through some tips and techniques to help you meet and exceed your goals for your 2011 4th quarter. Seeing as this Friday will be Black Friday, we thought we could start you off by reviewing the top holiday shopping days, so you can rev up your marketing strategies for those people who skip the mall and shop online instead.
It almost seems like every day between Thanksgiving and New Years has some special meaning for shoppers. This might be frustrating to try and keep up with, but the bright side is that now there are more opportunities to reach your customers and boost your sales. For shoppers and ecommerce sites, the winter holidays aren’t just a fun few days, it’s an entire month long event that starts at the end of this work week and ends in the blink of an eye.
Hopefully you have already successfully deployed part of your holiday marketing strategy. If not, START TODAY so that you don’t miss out on the rest of the seasonal opportunity! You will experience great benefits by advertising around certain publicized shopping days, so you need to be in the “know” and we’re here to help you. On these various days, you’ll notice more people are buying because they really don’t want to miss out on an amazing opportunity. Capitalize on that by reminding your visitors about special promos and deals via all of your marketing channels; e-mails, CPC ads and anything else you might be investing in. Make it easy for them to placate their holiday buying needs.
Start by focusing your marketing around some of these famous shopping days:
November 27: “Black Friday” Known as the biggest shopping day of the year, Black Friday has gotten even bigger thanks to the Internet. In recent years, numerous sites have sprung up, each dedicated to alerting consumers to Black Friday deals; which stores will offer which bargains, available discounts coupons, etc. Make an effort to be featured on a qualified site that promotes Black Friday promotions in your industry. In addition, it might be helpful to offer incentives to bloggers who could promote your Black Friday specials.
Even though it feels like we are slowly moving out of the economic crunch, a lot of people are still hurting and more are still in the saving mindset. 2011 will see shoppers embracing Black Friday because it promises to save prospects hard earned money.
November 30: “Cyber Monday” Interest in Cyber Monday has been growing stronger with every passing year. The theory is that when consumers return to work on the Monday after Thanksgiving, they’ll continue the shopping they started on Black Friday. As such, Cyber Monday has become the online equivalent of Black Friday, with retailers competing to offer the best deals to online shoppers. Ecommerce sites, I’m talking to you! Americans spend upwards of a billion dollars online on Cyber Monday. Make sure you are putting your best foot forward, your call centers are staffed, and your site is optimized for late stage and compulsive shoppers. If you haven’t optimized your site yet, it is never too late to start. It is a continuous process and you might as well start now for next year.
December 7: “Green Monday” The name “Green Monday” came not from this being a save the planet shopping day. Rather, it was coined by eBay, after the company realized that its sales peaked on the first or second Monday in December. Other sites have chimed in to follow suit, and “Green Monday” has now become a genuine shopping event, widely recognized as the heaviest online shopping day of the season. We think this is likely because Green Monday is the time when online retailers start offering free shipping incentives and folks start thinking about their gifts being delivered on time. Make sure you aren’t left in the dust! Get your free shipping promotions out before your competitors and make sure to get the message across that customers are running out of time via your newsletter, facebook, twitter and other strategies!
December 14: “Brown Monday” A week before Christmas, this is often the last day that you will be able to guarantee delivery by Christmas. It is also the day for you to offer the deepest discounts to move your holiday inventory before time runs out. Brown Monday is termed such because of all the brown boxes and packages being sleighed around. Again, get the message out that this is the customer’s last chance with great promos and delivery guarantees.
December 26: “Boxing Day” This is the After-Christmas shopping day that has many people out exchanging gifts, cashing in on gift certificates, and most importantly buying themselves everything they didn’t get for Christmas on the high of holiday Euphoria. I deemed this day boxing day because my friend from England said this was basically a re-gifting day, or a day to give to charities when she was growing up in Cambridge. In the U.S., I think boxing day has taken on a new meaning, IE, fighting or boxing over parking spaces, spots in the queue at the mall, and tables at the restaurant. As an online retailer, you can cash in on the day after Christmas sales by making sure you start merchandizing before Christmas has passed. Move your holiday inventory by offering competitive after Christmas incentives.
What day of the year do you get the most traffic on your site? More importantly, when do you get the most conversions? Does your online business actually slow down during the forth quarter? What do you do to keep your revenue flowing if you’re industry can’t cash in on one of these shopping days? Do you need help preparing for busy times of year? We’re here to help you get ready for your next peak season.