HolidayThe holidays have always been a spend-happy season for consumers, and with the boom of ecommerce, online shopping, and digital events like Cyber Monday, this is truer than ever.

But websites preparing for the holiday rush need to be ready. Although this is the time of year when businesses can generate tons of business, the increased web traffic provides some challenges as well. Keep these tips in mind to prepare your site for success.

1. Work out the site bugs

Prioritizing site speed should be one of your holiday site goals.

The holidays are stressful. In between finishing our online shopping, answering the nonstop calls from relatives, and figuring out where that burning smell is coming from, every second counts. You can’t afford to make your customers wait with a slow website.

According to consumer surveys, three seconds is the cutoff point for how long users will wait for ecommerce sites to load. To make matters worse, 79 percent of shoppers won’t give your site another shot after this initial failure. Fixing your back-end site infrastructure can be a long process, so we recommend starting early.

2. Create some holiday content

A fresh holiday season calls for some fresh content.

If you’re a B2B website owner interested in promoting brand authority, adjust your content marketing schedule to include some holiday-themed posts. Ecommerce sites should post new images of their products in holiday swag—even if it’s as simple as showing your products in holiday gift boxes or adorned with Santa hats. Consider rewriting content descriptions to include holiday verbiage that gives them a festive air.

Dressing up your content can influence customer spending habits. After all, ecommerce is all about psychology.  When customers see holiday-themed imagery that puts them in the festive mindset, they’ll be more likely to get in the gift-giving mood.

3. Highlight your best deals

With your site speed optimized and your holiday content ready, your next move is to promote the heck out of your best deals.

Place your best offers front and center on your site. This applies to your marketing, too—take your most profitable deals and make sure they’re included in your email blasts, drip campaigns, on-site banners, and social media pages.

The social media element is important to remember, particularly in the B2B sphere. Research suggests that B2B buyers will need to interact with five pieces of content on social media before reaching out to a sales representative. Include your most impressive discounts on-site, but don’t forget to market them as well.

4. Ready your customer service team

Increased site traffic means increased need for customer service. The more complicated something is, the more people will need a helping hand to get through it. Make sure your service team is equal to the task.

An ironclad rule of customer service involves addressing customer issues as fast as possible. Many ecommerce sites use on-site chat windows to provide real-time support. Others handle things entirely on social media. Whatever method works for your business model, be ready to batten down the hatches when the customers come knocking.

Holiday Site Success

The holiday season is great for ecommerce: Customers are ready to buy. It’s your job as the business owner to make it easy for them. Streamline your site, get your best deals on display, and be ready to handle the overflow of customer concerns. The holidays can be stressful, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be profitable.

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