Time to Prepare ecommerce for Christmas?

Summertime! While you’re out enjoying the sun, the beach, and an ice cold margarita, there’s something else that should be in the back of your mind. No, not where the suntan lotion went or how long until the luau, it’s something about your ecommerce store.

That thing is…Christmas?

Yes, Christmas. That magical time of year that couldn’t be further from the hot, sweaty, lazy days of summer. But we all know how quickly it comes upon us. You turn around, and suddenly you’re shopping for that last minute gift for your wife’s best friend’s cousin.

And that’s what should be in the back of your mind – how are you going to prepare your store for the inevitable rush on Christmas items? You may be thinking it’s too soon – and if you’re thinking that, it may be too late.

Why So Early?

The holiday season gets here earlier and earlier each year. It’s already taken over Thanksgiving to where that holiday is more like a wind-up for the big dance. Now it’s encroaching on Halloween and approaching summer.

However, for ecommerce sellers, it’s really in the BEGINNING of summer that you need to start planning. Since that time’s past and gone, though, there’s no time like the present.

You must start preparations as soon as possible. The holiday season, especially the few weeks leading up to Christmas, are some of the most profitable for stores. And that is no different for ecommerce sellers – Black Friday and Cyber Monday are a few of the times you can expect to make major bucks. That is, if you play your cards right.

What To Do

First of all, you really need to sit back and plan a bit. If you haven’t thought of end of the year sales at all, it’s best not to jump willy-nilly into it. You came up with a plan for your business when you first started, right? Make sure do the same when dealing with one of the most profitable times of the year for you.

For instance, what items are you really going to try and push this season? You can’t just assume folks will flock to your online store and grab what they can. You honestly have to lead people by the hand to your items, and even through to the shopping cart phase. Why? Because there is just so much…STUFF out there, especially during the holiday season. If you get lost in the snowfall, you’re toast.

So pick and choose which items you want to push. Do research and see what merchandise might be hot this year. Don’t sell a hot item? No sense in wasting an opportunity. Order some (early) and get it ready for the end of the year sales.

Now, remember the point earlier about leading people by the hand?  One of the best ways to do this is to devote a section of your website to holiday deals. This can be a separate page, a pop-up (not recommended, but possible), or even just a sidebar on your main page. Anything to attract attention to the items you want to push.

Last but not least is the art of the coupon! Everyone loves a deal, and you have to do what you can to guide folks your way. A good percentage off or buy-one-get-one-free promotion can do the trick. It may just be what you need to earn some of that holiday money that’s out there for the taking!