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How to Plan Ahead for 2020 eCommerce Holiday Campaigns

No campaign works unless it is planned with anticipation. Time is of the essence, and there are multiple factors to consider regarding the products you want to sell and many issues regarding the behavior of your online store in peak seasons. Here are some important things to bear in mind for your upcoming 2020 holiday season eCommerce campaigns.

Start with a calendar

It is paramount that you are well aware of every single important date that you will be dealing with. Did you know there are at least 28 holidays coming up next year? That means 28 campaigns you need to plan in order to take advantage of these opportunities to increase your sales.

Your customers need to know in advance, as well. They want to know when to expect discounts, new products, free shipping, or whatever it is that you will be offering. They need to be informed that you are planning something special. Creating and then meeting expectations has always been good for business. Having a holiday calendar for your website will prove very helpful, especially if it is clean and easy to understand. If it’s downloadable, that’s even better! Magento 2 offers a Calendar Widget to create either a pop-up or inline calendar. There is also an extension for creating an Event Calendar.

We have also included a free downloadable calendar with the most popular holidays for 2020 at the end of this article.

Decorations are not only for looks

One effective way to get ready for an upcoming holiday special — and to prepare your customers — is the use of banners. These may be used to advertise the season or holiday itself, exclusive products you wish to promote, or merely as a decorative item. However, we suggest you take advantage of hyperlinks to lead your customers directly to the landing pages of those seasonal items you want to sell.

Banners can be placed on different parts of the UI. Magento 2 offers several extensions that allow you to insert banners without totally changing the design of your website.

Performance is paramount

Website downtime is often disregarded as a potential problem. However, you cannot afford to lose any customers during peak traffic because of unexpected failure or programmed maintenance your provider did not tell you about. There are many hosting providers out there who offer “excellent” service with little to zero downtime, but ensure this is true. You do not want any surprises.

Also, during peak seasons, the number of visits to your website may increase considerably. Statistics show that, during a high sales holiday like Black Friday or Cyber Monday, the number of searches per second typically made on an eCommerce site may increase tenfold. Your site must be optimized to avoid long loading times, including shopping carts, or ineffective checkout/payment processes. Some experts say that customers will turn away from a site after two or three seconds of unnecessary delays. Fortunately, Magento 2 has everything you need to create or optimize an online store that works as smoothly and efficiently as you need it to in any peak season.

Optimize your product inventory

Another thing you have to do when getting ready for an increased sales season is optimize and update your inventory. Add any products you believe your customers will be searching for. Create landing pages for these seasonal products. Include interesting photos. Use analytics to observe sales trends. Optimize your categories based on those trends. During a high sales season, updates to your product database will also increase considerably. Be prepared!

Take advantage of social media

Exclusive products require special promotion. Create posts for these products, offers or deals in your social media far before the season.

Remember, campaigns must start early to allow sufficient time for customers to see them. Landing pages for these products must be in place before the holiday, and posts must be linked to them. Let your customers know what they can expect to find as soon as the holiday begins.

The personal touch

A good store will keep track of all its customers and the kind of purchases they have made in the past. This allows you to send personal messages to each one of them, offering products they might be interested in based on your analytics. Personal messages will likely increase your conversion rates.

Upgrade to the latest software!

If you are running a Magento 1 store, bear in mind that by June 2020 there will be no more support. We strongly suggest you migrate to Magento 2 now so you will not miss out on any of the increased sales opportunities next year’s holiday seasons will bring.

Conclusion

Being prepared is all it takes to be in a position to profit from special days of the year. Magento 2 sites are running on one of the best eCommerce platforms available, with multiple features and extensions that allow for better performance and optimization. However, it is you, the store owner/administrator, who must determine what is needed and when. We hope these tips have been helpful along with the 2020 eCommerce Calendar Free Download that IronPlane has prepared for companies like you.

About IronPlane and our business cases

They are 100% focused on Magento and have 55 Magento developers on staff specializing in front end, back end, and integrations.

Their lead developer has been named a “Magento Master” 5 times by Magento (only 3 worldwide).

They were the 2018 winner of the “Most Innovative Customer Experience Award” by Magento.

Learn more about our Magento case studies:

  • Gat Creek – a hybrid B2C / B2B eCommerce website with product visualizer.
  • Sea Bags – an optimized hosting architecture, and a custom deployment and Magento 2 support plan.
  • Formaggio Kitchen – a well-built, stable, fast, and mobile friendly B2C website.

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