Love it or loathe it, Christmas is barely six weeks away – and your website needs to be ready.
We know, we know, the festive season should be about more than how much money you can make, and, of course, for most of us it is. But the reality is that, if you’re involved in marketing a business, you simply cannot afford to ignore the Christmas period especially with Cyber Monday and Black Friday when consumers go online looking for deals. If you do, your competitors will be stealing a march on you.
Even those who like to go out to Christmas shop will research digitally first so they make informed decisions – or may view goods in person then purchase them online. That means acting now to get your digital marketing spot on.
Here are our tips for making sure you’re fully prepared;
1. Maximise mobile
Ensure your website works equally well on a desktop and mobile, so that you don’t miss out on orders. Nearly half (45%) of sales were made by mobile during 2015’s final quarter. Indeed, mobile has pretty much outpaced desktop in terms of search volumes, and, of course, a mobile device is often used as an extra research tool while people are out shopping.
2. Get your website in order
Your digital presence has to be strong with basics of your website such as product photos and descriptions. Does every page have a title and a meta description?
Your location page also needs to be clear and up to date, so customers can find you easily.
Think about last dates for orders, fully optimising seasonal products or offers, adding Christmas banners and so on. And be sure your checkout functions well, both for mobile devices and PCs.
You should always state festive season opening hours prominently, while bars and restaurants in particular need local SEO detailing how to book Christmas parties.
Features such as Click & Collect and live and technical support become especially important at this time of year when people are busy.
Your website also needs to feature positive customer reviews, as shoppers increasingly use these in making purchasing decisions.
3. Social media
Are you making the most of Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and the like with images, special offers, strong customer interaction and more? Facebook enables you to target a your desired demographic so every penny of your budget can be used to target the right audience.
4. Paid Search and Display Network Ads
Many mobile searches only show paid search adverts above the line, so these are going to be seen, whatever you are searching for as a shopper. AdWords offers various extensions which display local details, making it easier for people to find you. Display ads, equally, are a simple, affordable way to reach more people, and can be tightly targeted.
Finally, any B2B customers who may be quieter before Christmas should use this time to prepare for 2017. November and December are ideal times to research and plan new campaigns so that, come the New Year, everything is ready to go.