Holiday shopping season is upon us and kicking off this weekend with the much-anticipated Black Friday. Almost all retailers rely on the holiday shopping season to take them from the red to black because 30% of annual retail sales occur between Black Friday and Christmas. This means having a marketing strategy for how you’re going to succeed this holiday season is more critical than ever. Our tips tell you what tactics will be most effective for your brands and what will help you to ring in record sales this holiday season.
Strategy 1: Perfect Your Listings
Make sure your business appears at the top of search engines. There is a lot of competition out there this holiday season and consumers are keeping their options open. Google says, "Last year, more than 50% of holiday shoppers said they were open to purchasing from new retailers." Step one of optimizing your marketing strategy for the holiday season is to make sure all of your store listings are up to date and reflecting your most current store information. Optimizing your brand pages is a crucial step to bringing in foot traffic this holiday season.
In order to optimize for local SEO, check for accuracy on your listings. The key factors to note are consistent name, address, phone numbers, location hours, and website/product pages. Not only does listing accuracy impact your stores, but if you have the wrong address or phone number, then you’re losing out on tons of shoppers this year for those locations!
It is very common to hire a listing management company to ensure all listings are accurate. If already using an existing listing management provider, be sure to hold them accountable. Many providers don’t give details on what is live on the web. Thus, it would be good business practice to have a 3rd party validate that the job is done and confrim your business is ready for the holiday season -learn more here.
Strategy 2: Mobile Optimization
Optimizing for mobile is low hanging fruit that should be taken care of right away. If your business has not optimized their site to be responsive for mobile devices, then it is missing a huge percentage of potential income. Google will push you down in the search results if your website/store landing pages are not responsive. We have 3 eye-opening stats that will hopefully convince you to optimize for mobile if you have not already done so.
- 26.4% of online purchases were made via mobile devices over the last holiday season
- 56% of searches were conducted on a smartphone or tablet
- 32% of all Black Friday purchases online were done via mobile
Strategy 3: Online Trends May Be Misleading You
There are hundreds of blogs circulating that state Black Friday is out and Cyber Monday is in. While statistics support this movement (16.2% increase of online sales from 2014-2015), retail is a $5 trillion industry, with 94% of those sales resulting from in-store. Don’t fear, we are a culture of instant gratification, and while more people are willing to buy online, mobile devices are primarily used to help consumers locate brick-and-mortar businesses. According to Google, 76% of people who search for something nearby on their smartphone visit a related business within a day.
Technology is still going to have a big influence this holiday season with retailers employing “smart” technology to enhance the shopping experience. According to the National Retail Federation, “retailers expect to invest in solutions that simplify process, increase visibility and harmonize operations.”
Strategy 4: Manage Your Reviews
More often than ever before, people are doing research before diving into the holiday shopping maddnes; this includes checking out your reviews and seeing what people are saying about you. 90% of consumersof consumers read online reviews before visiting a business. If they see reviews with customers complaining about your overly-difficult return policy or the outrageous amount of time it took to check out then those consumers will be taking their money elsewhere.
So what do you do if you find reviews with consumers venting to the internet about your store? Start responding to them! Google announced that in order to your rankings and local SEO, you need to be responding to both good and bad reviews. It proves to your customers and the search engines that you legitimately care about what is happening in your store. For more information on this topic, check out our recent blog.
To ensure that you are ready for the “Holiday Season Hunger Games” as I like to call it, schedule a demo with us and we will audit your listings, rankings, and show you how you look compared to your competitors. Tis the season to invest in smart conversion optimization tools that will help your business come out on top this holiday season.
We have many case studies (a few highlighted below) documenting huge improvements in rankings, resulting in a flood of new customers to our clients. Be sure to act now, before the season is over!
- A large national retailer had a 600% increase in keywords on Page 1 by effectively utilizing Chatmeter's analystics & reccomendations, seach rankings increased from 1,100 to 7,700 keywords
- In the first 6 months, a renowned retail company's reuptation increased 3.7>4.1 response rate, increased 187%
- A healthcare company had a 3600% increase in rankings (form 60 to 900 keywords on Page 1)