Once again, the holiday season is quickly sneaking up on us. Experts predict that ecommerce will play a bigger role in Black Friday Cyber Monday sales than ever before, accounting for a record 18.9% of total holiday season retail sales.
This is huge for Shopify stores. You have an opportunity to give millions of holiday shoppers exactly what they want: a convenient, safe, and hassle-free shopping experience. And in return, you get a chance to increase your reach, grow customer relationships, and see sales soar!
But it won’t be easy. Not only will you be competing with thousands of other Shopify stores, but you’ll also go head to head with the big guys like Walmart and Amazon as well. With so many options at your customers’ fingertips, it’s up to you to make sure your store stands out with the best shopping experience possible.
If you haven’t already started preparing for the busiest shopping period of the year, now is the time! Check out these 8 tips for increasing conversions during Black Friday Cyber Monday to help you get started.
- Display A Banner With Special Holiday Offers
- Use Product Recommendations To Guide Gift-giving
- Give Customers Ample Ways To Get In Touch
- Include Trust Badges Throughout The Customer Journey
- Leverage The Words of Your Previous Customers
- Show Expected Delivery Dates on Product Pages
- Be Upfront About Shipping and Returns Policies
- Allow Customers To Check out as A Guest
1. Display A Banner With Special Holiday Offers
What’s a Black Friday or Cyber Monday without awesome deals? Shoppers visiting your store this holiday season will expect to see some sort of discount or promotion, so it’s your job to make sure they know what you’re offering.
You can display seasonal offers front and center on your homepage to make it easy for customers who start there. Knowing that many of their customers are looking to buy toys as Christmas gifts for their children, Target often promotes their toy deals on the homepage during the holiday season.
Target ensures that customers immediately know what deals are available by marketing their toy sale on the homepage during Black Friday Cyber Monday.
But you also have to think about customers who are coming in through an ad or landing page. Those customers may start shopping around, looking at various products you offer, and forget what promo code they’re supposed to enter by the time they get to the checkout.
Combat that issue by displaying your holiday offers and promo codes in a floating banner in your site header. This way, as shoppers move through the customer journey, they can refer to the banner at any point to be reminded of your special offers.
ShopDisney.com uses sitewide banners to promote discounts and free shipping codes.
Install a Shopify app like Justuno to create custom banners for Black Friday Cyber Monday.
2. Use Product Recommendations To Guide Gift-giving
Black Friday Cyber Monday shoppers are on the prowl for great holiday gifts for their family and friends. Gift guides are a popular way to steer gifters in the right direction and upsell additional products.
Many ecommerce stores create gift categories like Stocking Stuffers, Gifts for Teens, and Gifts $50-$100, etc. to help shoppers find something for every person on their list. You can also take it a step further and get creative with categories that align with what you sell. For example, if you sell gardening products, you could create a gift category called “For Green Thumbs.”
You can also use product recommendation engines to share guidance on gift-giving. HiConversion Recommend is one Shopify app you can install to display a widget that recommends your best-selling products which may spark some gift-giving inspiration. Add this widget to your product pages and shopping cart to boost upsells and increase your average order value.
Product recommendation engines are a great way to encourage upsells during the holiday season.
3. Give Customers Ample Ways To Get In Touch
The holiday season is a time that draws in a lot of new site traffic. New shoppers that are unfamiliar with your site often have questions about your products and policies. If their questions don’t get answered, they’re less likely to convert, so it’s important that you give them plenty of options when it comes to contacting your team.
One of the easiest and most foolproof ways to do that is to include your business phone number and email address in your site header and footer. This way, customers have quick access to the information they need to reach you anytime a question arises in their customer journey.
Live chat is another great option if you have the resources to operate it. Live chats give you the power to answer questions in real-time as the customer is shopping, which can help prevent abandoned carts. Try installing a Shopify app like Gorgias to launch a live chat on your site.
4. Include Trust Badges Throughout The Customer Journey
Most consumers have concerns when they shop online. With major data breaches headlining the news every few weeks, who can blame them? No one wants to share their personal information online only to have their identity stolen or to be scammed out of their hard-earned money.
The holiday season is an especially lucrative time of year for hackers. They’ll be out on the prowl looking for businesses that are too distracted with the hustle and bustle of the holiday season to pay close attention to security. If you’re not prepared, you could be their next victim.
Services like TrustedSite can help you stay protected from a data breach and ease consumer concerns about shopping on your website with trust badges. In order to display the trust badges, you first have to pass a security check. If your site is free of things like malware, malicious links, and phishing, you’ll be able to add a badge to your site that shows visitors it’s safe to shop.
TrustedSite also offers trust badges that address other concerns like business legitimacy, order fulfillment, and payment security. It’s useful to include these types of trust badges throughout the customer journey because different concerns arise on different pages.
One best practice is to place a payment security badge near the credit card information field in the checkout. Nearly half of shoppers have abandoned a cart because they feared their credit card information wouldn’t be secure, so placing a trust badge here can boost their confidence and increase your chances of getting a conversion.
Holabird Sports is a Shopify store that tested TrustedSite trustmarks during the holiday season and they saw a 16% increase in conversions.
Holabird Sports includes trust badges in the checkout to help alleviate customer concerns about payment security.
5. Leverage The Words of Your Previous Customers
People trust other people more than they trust brands. It’s why 89% of global consumers read reviews as a part of their online shopping journey.
For as much effort as you put into making your product descriptions clear and thorough, your customers are still going to want to hear what other people say about their experiences with your products.
If you haven’t already implemented a reviews program, now is the time to get started. Not only can reviews help increase conversions this holiday season, they can also help to improve your average order value. Consumers spend as much as 31% more when businesses have excellent reviews.
Trustpilot is one reviews service that offers an easy to install Shopify app. Once you’ve installed a reviews app, you’ll want to experiment to find the optimal number of days to solicit a review after a customer has made a purchase. You should give enough time for the customer to be able to receive the product and try it out, but don’t wait so long that it’s no longer top of mind.
Trustpilot offers a Shopify app that allows you to easily collect and respond to customer reviews.
Another best practice is to respond as much as you can to your customer reviews, whether good or bad. As much as we don’t like negative reviews, they present an opportunity to showcase your excellent customer service and learn how to make improvements to your business.
6. Show Expected Delivery Dates on Product Pages
Holiday shoppers are on the hunt for gifts they can give to family and friends at special gatherings. That means the expected delivery date of their order plays a huge role in what they will or won’t purchase this season. Shoppers won’t want to risk receiving their items after celebrations have passed, so many will abandon carts if there isn’t a clear expected delivery date.
Prevent the confusion and abandoned carts by including expected delivery dates as early in the customer journey as possible. Including this information on product pages and in the shopping cart will help to correctly set the shopper’s expectations for when they can anticipate their order to arrive, and avoid the disappointment of late arrivals.
The more specific and accurate your expected delivery dates are, the better. Giving a date range like 2-3 business days or 1-2 weeks is good, but an actual expected date is even better.
Estimated Delivery Date Range by SetuBridge is one Shopify app you can install to easily display shipping estimates on your site.
7. Be Upfront About Shipping and Returns Policies
In addition to clearly communicating expected delivery dates, being upfront about your shipping and returns policies is equally important. These can have a significant influence on purchasing decisions, so you’ll want to include them in places where shoppers will take notice, like product pages and the shopping cart.
Amid the pandemic, many businesses like The Sunglass Fix have been upfront with customers about shipping delays. The Sunglass Fix also lists how many business days each shipping method takes.
This holiday season, many shoppers will be expecting free shipping, or at least free shipping with a minimum order value. If you’re able to offer free shipping, be sure to announce it in a sitewide banner along with any other special Black Friday deals you have.
Many shoppers will also be expecting free (and hassle-free) returns in case their gifting plans don’t turn out as well as they hoped. And since many major retailers offer extended returns during the holidays, your customers will likely expect it from you as well. If you can offer an extended 60 or 90-day returns policy, note this wherever you mention other shipping information.
8. Allow Customers To Check out as A Guest
Many shoppers will be making purchases on multiple sites this holiday season. This means customers will be prompted to create accounts over and over again on these different sites, and many will get fatigued by it.
Having to remember so many usernames and passwords can be cumbersome, and often prevents shoppers from completing a purchase. In fact, it’s the number-two reason why shoppers abandon carts after too high costs. Avoid driving away your customers by giving them the option to check out as a guest.
If you’re concerned that guest checkout may enable customers to abandon their cart before they finish inputting their information, there are measures you can take to get them back. In your Shopify store settings, you have the option to automatically send an email to customers after they have abandoned their checkout. Enabling this is a great way to recover those lost carts and increase your conversions this holiday season.
The holiday season presents Shopify merchants with a huge opportunity to reach a new audience and grow sales. But just because there’s more opportunity doesn’t mean you can expect to watch the sales roll in without making any preparations.
Optimizing your customer experience prior to the holiday rush is essential to establishing a positive rapport and maximizing conversions. By following the tips we’ve laid out here, your Shopify store will do just that this holiday season.
Content Lead at TrustedSite
As the Content Lead at TrustedSite, Alysse works to communicate the importance of building trust online.
TrustedSite helps organizations protect data from external attackers and earn customer trust.