Marketing Bootcamp

Doing These 5 Things Can Help You Get More Ecommerce Sales This Holiday Season

Holiday-season ecommerce sales figures hit a high of $46.55 billion in 2013 and that number is expected to increase this season, continuing an upward trend of more consumers doing their holiday shopping online. What are you planning on doing to put your ecommerce business in a position to capture a share of 2014’s holiday season revenue?

These five things can help your business get a bigger piece of the pie this season.

1. Create AdWords remarketing.

Implementing remarketing allows to you target consumers that have previously visited your website. If you are running an AdWords pay-per-click campaign, you simply add a snippet of code to your website and create a remarketing list. When a visitor hits that particular page of your website, their cookie ID is saved to your list. Once you establish your list you can build campaigns within your AdWords account that are only displayed to those people on your list. 

Related: Tis the Season to Be Savvy: 6 Ways to Optimize Brand Marketing

For example, let’s pretend you have an ecommerce website that sells widgets. You could create a list for those visitors that land on your “blue widgets” product-category page and then create an ad that specifically addresses them. Imagine a display ad with a picture of the blue widget they were just looking at that follows them all over the Internet. The odds of them returning to your website to make their purchase is increased since that ad will now appear on websites that they visit after leaving your site.

2. Utilize Facebook ads.

Facebook is another great advertising platform to use to drive extra traffic during the holiday season. If you have an active business page you can boost posts and target those people who “Like” your page, or you can reach a new audience through targeting. You can also create traditional ad campaigns that utilize Facebook’s extensive targeting options. They also have remarketing abilities similar to AdWords, which they refer to as custom audiences.

Facebook states that people access its website on mobile devices 4.2 times more often than search engines before holiday shopping. It has more tips to help you excel on its ad platform here and 10 tips for increasing sales during the holidays here.

3. Publish clever infographics.

Infographics are always an effective marketing tool -- they are a great way to connect with your audience and deliver a message. They also receive a lot of social shares and can introduce your website to a wider audience. My company recently collaborated with HubSpot to create this infographic and in just four days it has received approximately 1,700 social shares.

Related: 5 Ecommerce Mistakes to Avoid During the Holiday Season

The holiday season gives you an opportunity to create a very clever infographic with a holiday-specific theme. You can create one to simply raise brand awareness and push website traffic to your ecommerce store, or your can create one around promoting a specific product or holiday special. You will want to publish your infographic on your website as well as reach out to media outlets and other websites that you think would like to share it. The more eyes that see it the more effective it will be.

4. Get interactive on Instagram.

While Twitter is experiencing slow user growth, Instagram is booming and establishing itself as one of the most popular social networks. Many retailers are taking advantage of this popularity and encouraging customers to take selfies with their products and share them across Instagram. Creating a campaign around a branded hashtag is a great way to increase brand awareness and sales during the holiday season. 

Encourage your Instagram fans and customers to take pictures of themselves with products that they purchase from your website and include a special branded hashtag in the pictures to be entered into a drawing to win a gift certificate. The opportunities are endless. Get creative, because the user base is there just waiting to engage with your brand. 

5. Address cart abandonment.

Increased holiday website traffic is going to mean increased cart abandonment. In fact, more than 68 percent of online shoppers abandon their shopping cart without completing their purchase. In an effort to convert more sales and lower your cart-abandonment rate consider using a special offer triggered by exit-intent technology.

When it is determined that your visitor is about to leave the shopping cart without completing his or her purchase, an offer can be presented. Some examples could be a free shipping offer if they complete their purchase -- complete with a countdown timer, or a special discount coupon.

You could also have an offer of a future discount if they submit an email address. This will allow you to market to them via email, and hopefully get them back to your website to make their purchase. It is important to split-test multiple cart-abandonment offers to see what approach works best for your target audience. 

What else are you planning to implement this holiday season to increase your ecommerce sales? Share your strategies and suggestions in the comments below.

Related: Strategies to Drive Shoppers to Your Online Store