Christmas is the favourite time of year for many retailers, especially fashion and accessories.
Australians will spend an estimated $8.8 Billion on Christmas presents this year, ranging between $500 and $650 per person.
That’s a lotta dough and a lot of opportunity.
The added kicker for retailers is that there is the social pressure of your gift being opened in front of a live and potentially unreserved family audience, so you better make that new gift a good one!
Like any great opportunity, comes the opportunity to lose out or damage your brand…
The majority of online stores leave their customers guessing as to whether they’ll be the Christmas hero handing over their gift on the big day, or having an awkward conversation ABOUT YOUR BRAND, IN FRONT OF A ROOM OF OTHERS EXPLAINING THAT IT DIDN’T ARRIVE IN TIME!
To make sure your brand capitalises on extra sales this Christmas period, I’ve prepared this quick and easy guide with the visual help of Bellroy Wallets, a favourite ecommerce brand of mine, to help you boost your online store’s sales.
Here’s 5 Easy Ways to Improve Your Christmas Sales online…
1. Clearly state your Delivery Times
Being clear about whether your customers should receive their gifts before the big day helps de-risk their apprehension of letting down their loved one.
The above example clearly guides the customer as to what date they can order online until, before having to make the switch to a purchasing in a physical retail outlet.
Stating you offer express shipping at the header of every page further helps de-stress any time-sensitive purchases.
2. Clearly state your Refund and Exchange Policies
We all have that certain someone who is picky, hard to buy for or has everything.
I’m one myself, I think it’s the pixel-perfect designer disease that comes out in me (I’m definitely getting better though!).
The return rate on gifts are typically pretty low, but you can instantly de-risk your products to a ‘free hit’ (usually minus shipping costs) for your customers who are gifting for others by offering easy exchanges and returns.
I really like Bellroy’s extended 60 day returns period as it gives the chance for a giftee to upgrade from a colour or style they might not love, to one they can’t live without.
3. Add a ‘Christmas Gifts’ Type Menu to your Navigation Bar
Re-enforcing to your potential customer that your products are the perfect gift idea can help trigger off ideas in their minds.
Adding filter options like:
– Price i.e. Gifts under $50, Gifts $50-100 etc,
– Gender / Relationship Specific Gifts i.e. Gifts for Her, Gifts for Her, Gifts for Dad etc
– Popularity i.e. Best Sellers, Most Loved etc
Or you could always step it up a notch like Bellroy and speak directly to your customer persona types with specific, ‘exact person in mind’ names like Gadget Geeks and Travellers.
4. Promote Gift Vouchers heavily within the week of Xmas for Last Minute Givers
Once you know the latest possible order date you can comfortably deliver your customers their gifts for the big day (remember for Bellroy this was 20 December), thereafter you should change your selling strategy to push gift vouchers heavily to convert last minute buyers.
Gift Cards and vouchers can be your secret weapon with 65% of gift card holders spending an extra 38% beyond the value of the card.
Giving customers a clear expectation and opportunity to buy a digital gift voucher, print it off and put it in their giftee’s card on Christmas Eve, is a hell of a lot better than losing sales because customers knew it was too late for physical delivery or they didn’t even know you offered them.
Gift vouchers are great for retailers as they generate revenue in advance of sales, help attract new customers and increase brand awareness.
They also remove any geographical objections and are perfect if a retailer is not nearby or open during the purchase.
5. Help customers find their nearest store
Applicable to those brands with physical retailers or their own retail stores, I’ve found this key selling point is often under-communicated by brands as they assume customers will know where to go.
For products where size, fit and colour are critical to that yes or no decision (think fashion), it makes sense to drive them in-store to allay any sizing concerns and let them touch and feel the product.
If it’s your own brand’s store, the opportunities to up / cross-sell, have deeper brand / product conversations or further delight your customer by offering complimentary services like gift wrapping in-store (note: highly valued by males), are undervalued.
In summary, 5 Easy Ways to Improve Your Christmas Sales online:
1. Clearly state your delivery times
2. Clearly state your refund and exchange policies
3. Add a ‘Christmas Gifts’ type menu to your navigation bar
4. Promote Gift Vouchers heavily within the week of Xmas for late minute buyers
5. Help customers find their nearest store
Best of luck to you and your store this Christmas.
Need help? If you require immediate help I’m available until the 21st December to ensure your Online Store is Christmas ready – Email Me Now
If you’ve got any other tactics on how to improve your Christmas sales I’d love to hear them. Leave me a comment in the fields below.