How to prepare your e-commerce for summer

06/27/2018 - Jordi Ordoñez

Summer is here and we’ll start noticing it any time now. We’re not only worried about the rise in temperature, which of course we are, we’re also concerned about the time we have to start preparing the webpage for our online store. Seasonality can be tricky, so sign up for these tips on how to prepare your e-commerce for summer.

The importance of seasonality

Online stores, like any other type of business, react to seasonality. Obviously, there are differences since it’s not the same to sell industrial nuts and bolts as it is to sell beach towels.

Due to the inherent nature of the product or specialty area, some e-commerce stores will have more sales, while others have fewer, but even an extreme example like B2B industrial hardware is affected by the summer because everything slows down. The people responsible for sales go on vacation, customers put certain tasks on hold until September, etc.

The first piece of advice is to go directly to your web analytics tool and look at last year’s data. Check:

  • Traffic by channels
  • Overall sales
  • The most sold products
  • The days of highest and lowest activity

 

By doing this, you learn two important things: the first is, for example, to take all of June’s results into account; you’re not only comparing them with the month of May but also with June of the previous year. It may seem silly, but what might cause a mini heart attack after seeing certain dips in sales, may actually be a normal pattern.

Secondly, you gain a certain strategic advantage. Now you know what, how much, and where you sold more so you can focus your efforts there. Furthermore, if you sell internationally you know you’ll have to have a double strategy to adjust to both seasons.

It’s the era of the cell phone

As if there were only a few reasons to have a store that works on your cellphone (mobilefirstindex, amount of traffic from those devices, usability, etc), summer’s coming and there’s a trend that’s emphasized even more: people use their phones to surf the web.

It’s pretty common for cellphones to outpace desktop traffic. But when summer comes we find ourselves with more mobility; users leave home and usually don’t take their laptops. They’re not in their offices either so they can’t use company equipment to surf the web.

Again, I’ll refer you to last year’s data to avoid making the same mistakes: Did you notice a bigger drop in mobile sales over desktop sales? It might be time to take a look atthe purchasing process from a cellphone. Maybe it’s not as user-friendly as it should be or, maybe it doesn’t work in certain instances.

This is especially important if you’re also working on capture through payment methods. Work carefully on the landings you’re sending traffic to.

Strategically align the channels

Since we’re talking about recruitment, keep in mind that we’re still making sales and therefore, you should keep capturing.

Regarding PPC

It’s worth taking a creative look, both in terms of search and in terms of the display or social aspect. Use images that adapt to cellphones well (don’t use too much text because it might be illegible), use consistent calls to actionwiththese devices and segment and reward bids for them.

At the segmentation level, it’s important to keep in mind that there will now be a certain floating population. You might want to direct your campaigns to people who search you even if they use a language that’s different than the ones you use during the year.

Regarding SEO

We know that what hasn’t already be done, won’t give us results within a month. Still, you can start working for next year. Check your keyword research and look for longtail seasonal terms that you might not have thought about. Do they carry any weight? Can you justify creating a few landings to work on later?

Plan out content

Does your e-commerce have a summer collection or maybe you have stronger sales products? It’s not enough to upload new product pages, update the photos and send new tweets. Here, you need to do some planning.

Peak customers’ interest a few weeks in advance by giving a glimpse of what’s to come. This will ensure that your audience keeps a lookout on different social networks. Prepare a strong launch, to the best of your ability;it will also help to have a corporate blog and external media.

Preparing content exclusively dedicated to this collection -with purchasing guides- is always a good idea because it benefits the user and enhances SEO. It’s a good way to include new keywords for your keyword search that comply with the search motive.

Prepare an in-depthcontent calendar ahead of time to keep tasks from piling up and keep in mind that people in your office also go on vacation, so you shouldplan for that.

But, what about my vacation?

I won’t go into team management as that’s up to each company, but what is important is to makesure everything’s clear. Being objective, it would be strange to see an online store that’s closed for summer vacation. Sure, there are some examples, but they’re few and far between.

The user wouldn’t understand, but they would think it was logical that there were some restrictions on certain services, like customer service. If you decide to reduce the number of agents serving the public or change customer service hours, it’s best to let people know.

Are you all set to get your e-commerce ready for the summer?

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