5 Ways to Boost Conversions in 2021’s Holiday Season

In 2020, during the pandemic, ecommerce grew by a whooping 33.6%, which is equivalent to nearly $ 800 billion. It is not difficult to understand that it was an instant outcome of the sudden closure of stores.

Hence, many doubt the growth of online stores post-pandemic, when stores reopen. However, marketers are highly hopeful and estimated e-commerce to grow another 13.7% in 2021.

Since sales are at their peak during the holiday season, it’s time to gear up and prepare your conversion optimization strategies.

Here are 5 ways to boost conversion in 2021’s holiday season:

1- Emphasize On Page Speed

Customers love to do business with a brand that makes their shopping experience fast and seamless.

When they interact with an ecommerce website, they expect it to fulfill their needs. When it doesn’t, they choose to go for other e-stores, resulting in higher bounce rate and increased cart abandonment. In fact, research says 57% of your customers will leave your store if it loads for more than 3 seconds.

Therefore, make sure your site loads faster while handling heavy traffic and frequent transactions, especially during holidays when the traffic is at its peak.

Here are few proven tips you can use to improve your ecommerce site speed:

  • Use Google’s PageSpeed Insights to get an overview of your site speed and spot the issues you need to fix. Note that Google pays a lot more attention to loading times on mobile.
  • Use CDN to reduce page load time.
  • Utilize caching and in-memory technology to avoid unnecessary database access.
  • Use compression software to minimize the size of the data sent to a browser.
  • Optimize available configuration in the ecommerce platform to improve speed.

2- Leverage AI/ML To Hyper-Personalize Customer Experience

Considering the increased competition in the ecommerce market during the holiday season, you need a super-advanced and result-oriented solution to optimize conversion on your site.

Many online store owners are harnessing AI to maximize holiday season conversions by creating a super personalized experience for customers.

AI-powered personalization technology can proactively predict what customers may be interested in with a high degree of certainty. It understands the relationship of the product with the customer, as if a real live sales person is helping them navigate through the store.

By using AI-powered personalization tools, you will be able to recommend the exact items your customers are looking for, as well as offer them smart upsell and cross-sell suggestions that are more likely to sell. Consequently, you will see more conversions.

You can use AI and ML-based solutions like Dialogue that uses smart widgets to display personalized messages and recommendations all through their buying journey.

However, the AI-powered personalization technique is not limited to product recommendations only. There is a number of other benefits as well, for example:

  • Use AI-powered chatbots as conversation agents to offer personalized guidance during purchase.
  • Handling payments and processing orders at an individual level.
  • Display faster search for related products by image or image uploads.

Hence, it offers a highly personal customer experience tailored to each specific customer.

With such incredible features, ecommerce personalization is going to be a game-changer this holiday season.

3- Create A Sense Of Urgency

In the holiday season, when everyone else in the market is offering lucrative discounts and offers, it is difficult to grab customer’s attention to your business.

Creating a sense of urgency is a powerful way to drive sales where you make people feel that they are about to miss out on a great opportunity. It is a method of triggering fear of missing out.

Here is how you can make this trick work out:

  • Come up with an offer on trending products. People will show interest in products they are already looking for.
  • Run offer for a limited time. Use a countdown timer on your website to create time pressure.
  • Show scarcity of products. Create the illusion that certain products under discounts are about to run out. This way people will feel the urgency to buy that product before someone else does.
  • Use compelling words. You must consider using words like now, hurry, one last time, clearance, before it is gone, limited time offer, etc.
  • Give an extra incentive. You can offer free shipping for a limited time or a free surprise gift to your first 10 buyers to push them to act fast.

This strategy works wonders when used occasionally or during holidays, otherwise, your potential customers may not take your offers seriously.

4- Retarget Bounced Traffic/Abandoned Cart Owners

Not everyone who visits your site will convert on their first visit. 97% of people visiting a site for the first time leave without purchasing. It is true especially during holidays when buyers keep hunting for better offers and product varieties.

Interestingly, it is not a loss, rather an opportunity to convert them. Since now you know who has shown interest in your product or services, you can retarget them in better ways.

Through retargeting, you display ads to those potential customers based on their search and shopping behavior on your site. Here are some effective retargeting strategies to use in these holidays:

  • Pixel-based retargeting. You show your ads to anonymous visitors of your website based on their previous activities on your site. The information of the visitor is retained through browser cookies when someone visits certain pages on your website. ReTargeter is an effective pixel-based retargeting tool.
  • Social media retargeting. You display ads to people who visited your website and/or interacting with your posts on social media networks. It could be likes, comments, or shares.
  • List-based retargeting. You send your ads to the visitor’s or customer’s email addresses on your current mailing list by using tools like MailChimp.
  • Search retargeting. You display ads to visitors based on their search behavior. Retargeting tools like Fixel use AI-based audience segmentation to analyze the engagement level of the visitors.

These retargeting strategies will help you drive qualitative traffic to your website and encourage further conversion these holidays.

5- Optimize Checkout Process

All effort to drive customers to your site and make their purchases should not go in vain because of the poor checkout process.

To ensure that the customer completes their purchase and comes to your store, again and again, you must make the process exceptionally easy.

Avoid every point of friction between shopping and checkout. Here are a few excellent ways to do this:

  • Explain what to expect during checkout. Mention each checkout requirement a page before, to avoid any confusion and surprises for visitors.
  • Display progress bar. With the bar, prospects would know where they are positioned now in the checkout process and how far they are from the final step.
  • Don’t ask shoppers to register before checkout. It is a sort of friction. Provide an option of guest checkout and then ask to register once they complete the process for a smoother experience.
  • Don’t compromise on security. Use HTTPS, partner with a trusted payment gateway and follow the best practices to secure your store to avoid customer data vulnerability.
  • Add a fully functional back button. Customers often undo their actions taken during online purchases. If they can’t return to the previous page, especially during the checkout process, it might create additional friction.
  • Avoid shipping cost surprises. Whether shipping is free or chargeable, mention this clearly on the product page itself. You can provide a zip code/shipping calculator if the cost is variable.
  • Provide multiple payment options. Limited payment options are a huge friction point when prospects are most likely to abandon their carts. Hence, provide as many payment options as many you can.

By providing a seamless checkout process, you create a comfortable zone for your customers and enable them to leave your site with a pleasing experience.

Summary

A holiday season is an opportunity to maximize your sales and earn revenue. Considering the market competition, it becomes essential to take necessary steps that would boost conversion.

Use the above strategies or the combination of them to generate more traffic with greater chances of conversion. Remember that each business and their needs are different, hence deploy and test the changes accordingly.

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Author: Joydeep Bhattacharya

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