5 Tips to Improve Your Website for Holiday Sales
The holidays are almost upon us, which means soon enough shoppers will be descending on not just the brick-and-mortar stores out there, but online stores as well. In fact, according to a study by consulting firm Accenture, more people plan on buying online than in-store this holiday season. While there are several things you can do to prepare for the increased traffic around the holidays, here are five relatively quick and easy ones that should help you welcome your online visitors with open arms:
1. Make sure your servers are ready. Every minute your site is down can cost you lots of money and have a negative impact on customer loyalty. Make sure that you have the appropriate server resources that are able to scale as the traffic to your site does. Additionally, if you don't have a content delivery network (CDN), get one immediately! CDN's are affordable, relatively easy to set up and can be a lifesaver.
While CDNs aren't exclusively responsible for keeping a site up, they make a huge difference in a site's performance. They allow you to store copies of website assets or files on many servers distributed across the internet so those files can be served from a location geographically as close as possible to the browser downloading the site. What does this mean? It means your site is going to load much, much faster, and your customers are going to be able to get to your products and check out much, much quicker.
2. Update your look. While most retailers take the time to decorate their brick-and-mortar stores to showcase their holiday spirit, they often neglect their online stores. It makes a big difference and goes a long way when consumers are given something different when they come to your website. While unique content and offerings are a given, design subtleties can go a long way as well to warm up to your holiday customers. Furthermore, consistency on all fronts matters, so if you're sprucing up your stores, make sure you spruce up your site as well. In a season with a lot of comparison shopping, every detail matters.