This year, shoppers are taking their time. Cyber Monday hasn’t lost its luster yet, but 2014 is seeing the rise of “Cyber Week”, giving last-minute holiday customers just little longer to get their shopping done. If you haven’t tweaked your product pages for the holiday season, here’s a quick checklist of easy-to-miss fixes that could make a dramatic difference to your bottom line:
1. Communicate Urgency
This is the perfect time to deliver a loud and clear message: if you don’t buy NOW, not only will you miss out on the Cyber Week deals, you might never receive your gift at all. Playing up your deadline is crucial – some online retailers even include a ticking timer, reminding shoppers that the deal is about to expire. Remember, Fear of Missing Out (AKA “FOMO”) is very real. According to Adobe’s holiday shopping predictions, “out of stock” messages are expected to increase by 400%.
2. Emphasize Your Selection of Shipping, Delivery, and Gift-wrap Options
Free shipping is an amazing closer, but it isn’t the only way to delight your customers. Same-day pickup could be just as appealing. Throw in a choice of gift-wrapping, same day shipping, or a discount on express delivery, and your last-minute holiday shoppers will be dazzled.
3. Make Price a Big Deal
Keep that holiday shopping spirit alive by reminding shoppers of the original list price, your holiday discount rate, and the resulting difference in savings. Not only are you keeping them focused on the great deal, you’re also keeping the time-sensitive nature of holiday shopping in the conversation.
4. Increase Return Visits by Encouraging eMail Signups
Remember, most visitors will not convert, no matter how well you craft the product page. Give them an opportunity to stay connected with a convenient newsletter signup. Even a small incentive such as a discount coupon for first-time purchases can go a long way. They’ll be much more likely to convert on their next visit.
5. Optimize Product Pages for Search
As shoppers scout for the best holiday deals, help them reach those items quickly by optimizing product pages (or categories) for search terms (e.g. clearance, sale, holiday deals). The chances of converting these deal-seekers increase exponentially over the holiday season – IF you direct them to the relevant information as soon as they click into your site.
6. Suggest Related Items
Remember, last-minute shoppers are likely to be on the look-out for more finds. Keep a running suggestion sidebar close by so they never run out of gift options, offering related items to the current product page.
7. Help Customers Reap Rewards
Just a little extra encouragement can do wonders for conversions. Whether it’s an even bigger discount (plug Cyber Savings again!), or just a way to receive the items even sooner for the same price – that’s all some customers need to to hit the checkout button.
8. Increase Shares (Buttons + Calls to Share)
With increased social and mobile traffic attributed to conversions this year, referrals from social media can make a huge difference. Including social share buttons on every product page is virtually a given. Some retailers even encourage shoppers to snap photos of their favorite items, complete with a Twitter hashtag suggestion.
9. Consider Alternatives to “Add to Cart” Calls to Action
Sometimes, a subtle change in the call to action can make a world of difference. Do you know which copy variation your buyers respond to best? Try using alternatives to the standard “Add to Cart”. A straightforward alternative could be as simple as “Buy Now”. A fashion retailer might opt for the domain-appropriate “Add to Bag”. Keep trying and testing, and make iterative changes based on results. You’d be surprised at how dramatically conversions can increase with the right mix of Calls to Action.
10. Charge in Local Currency
Many Europeans actually prefer to buy in Euros even if it means paying more! Offering payment options in your customer’s local currency only requires a small technical fix on your site, producing an implicit familiarity with your customer.
Remember, it’s never too late to improve your holiday sales, even if it means targeting offers to a limited customer segment. You’ll discover different product page variations perform differently across segments. As you refine your testing and optimization process, you’ll be able to present an effective, customized product page to every visitor with laser-targeted personalization.