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Contact South West Web Marketing Christmas Strategy Cheat Sheet

It’s already been a whirlwind year for e-commerce, and the this Christmas is bound to bring a deluge of eager buyers searching for that perfect present. As always, the key to success is preparation, but this year has brought a myriad of changes, making it all the more important to stay on your toes. But don’t be overwhelmed—we’ve compiled 10 quick tips to help you transform shoppers into customers this Christmas.

Stepping Back to Get Perspective

Diversify: Bring your portfolio up to speed
Building a portfolio of e-commerce channels is a tip that will never cease to pay off for retailers. Take advantage of existing channels by reexamining strategies, and consider expanding to new channels to improve visibility. Retailers with broader platforms are more likely to be seen by prospective buyers.

Think Globally: Penetrate target markets
Examine the demographics of your current global customers. If you’re experiencing significant sales in other countries, consider launching an international site. Less dramatic moves like working with a freight-forwarding company to handle shipping and tariff regulations or enabling international payment options also improve buyer experience.

Marketplaces

eBay: Go with the flow of eBay’s changes
Make sure sales don’t slip due to unnoticed changes like the new economics surrounding the final value fee. Tackle title expansion this year by taking a methodical, bite-sized approach, working through top sellers first. eBay’s Daily Deal is highly favoured by eBay shoppers, especially during Q4, because they eliminate search time. A Daily Deal may be the golden ticket to reaching sales goals for a new product this season.

Amazon: Achieve top rated seller status
Remember that your Amazon Order Defect Rate (ODR) contributes to “winning the Buy Box,” as does offering the lowest price and having stock available. By monitoring and actively managing your metrics you will ensure you remain in the running for the coveted Buy Box during the busiest time of the year.

Comparison Shopping

Google Shopping: Get in the game early to win sales
Google Shopping acts as a free comparison shopping engine, and many retailers are missing the mark. If you’re on GPS, gain a strategic advantage over your competition by keeping up with the changes. In the busy seasonal rush, a misinformed competitor’s dead data feed could add up to a significant jump in your market share.

Select Data Feed Settings that Improve Customer Experience
Make sure you’re on as many comparison shopping engines as possible, and then carefully optimise data feed settings for each one. Don’t underestimate optional features like shipping, which can differentiate your buying experience to increase sales and customer satisfaction.

Paid Search

Paid Search: Product Listing Ads, Product Extensions and Keywords
When it comes to search, “less is more” doesn’t necessarily apply. Christmas shoppers often have exactly what they want in mind when they initiate a product search. Create at least five keywords per item, especially for products or lines you’re pushing this season. Focus on creating long-tail keywords and consider Channel Advisor’s Inventory Driven Search feature, which automates keyword creation based on existing inventory data. Analyse product performance across Product Listing Ads, Product Search, Product Extensions, and Keywords.

Emerging Channels

Get to know your social networks: Facebook and Google+
While Google+ may not hold any significant incentive for retailers now, Google has indicated that a future business-focused version of the application may be in the pipeline. If you haven’t noticed yet, everyone’s on Facebook—that means all your customers. Making an appearance on Facebook and Google+ will increase your visibility, allow you to interact with existing and prospect customers and position you to take advantage of any future business offerings the sites may introduce.

Likes me, Likes Me Not, Likes Me: Implement Like and +1 buttons
It’s not enough just to be on Facebook and Google+. The “Like” and “+1” buttons are customers’ way of letting you know what they think. Implement these buttons on every product page on your website, marketplaces and engines that have the option. Visit Channel Advisor’s Facebook Commerce Strategies Blog for more tips on how to build a social strategy to interact with fans, receive customer feedback and increase website traffic.

Make Friends with Mobile: Mobile-Friendly Websites and UPCs
Shoppers have taken their experience from brick-and-mortar stores to computers, and now increasingly to smart phones. The simplest thing to do to make sure you’re a mobile-friendly seller is to implement a mobile optimised version of your website. For starters, focus on the two main browsers: Apple Safari and Google Chrome. Customers are doing more barcode scanning these days, too, so publish items with UPC codes to ensure your products appear in mobile comparison shopping engines.

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