Ecommerce marketers are already starting to go through their Holiday marketing checklist — that is, if they’re smart. Because they know, as you should, it’s never too early to start planning.
Holiday Marketing Checklist
Avoid Abandoned Shopping Carts by Using Mobile Wallets
The use of mobile wallets continues to grow exponentially. It’s got to be consumer-friendly to the nth degree to avoid massive checkout abandonment. Just look at the league third party payments are in:
- Apple Pay is coming to the mobile web by December.
- Amazon Payments is rolling out new third-party payment apps that make purchasing easier than falling off a cyber log.
- PayPal Credit is just about cornering the market for mobile large-ticket items.
Don’t Forget Mobile Attribution
Mobile attribution is a keystone to marketing success this year. Are you able to connect your mobile spend with meaningful non-mobile results? Financial results? The big boys, like Walmart and Target, are already geared up for that. What are you waiting for?
Direct Mobile Customers to Your Landing Pages
The mobile customer is a voracious consumer of every media platform. You’ve got to recognize them as a major market and source of income. Mobile customers control just what media they will interact with you on, so your job is to make sure that whatever media it may be, from Facebook to Twitter, you are set up to receive them and direct them to your landing page with a minimum of hassle or delay. This Holiday season will truly be the Day of the Multi-Device Shopper. So be prepared on all fronts.
Use Facebook to Retarget Ecommerce Customers
Ad platforms are morphing fast. Facebook continues to be very lucrative when it comes to retargeting customers for ecommerce. They now offer in-store tracking. If you’re an omnichannel merchant, the clicks-to-bricks ratio is looking better all the time. And their video platform is growing by leaps and bounds. There’s no telling how far they will be able to go this Holiday season with their video partnerships with eCommerce.
Facebook now ranks just behind YouTube for scalable video usage. Facebook continues to lead the way in two areas:
- In the use of retargeting pixels. Just drop one at your site to instantly retarget abandoners. Dynamic catalog ads also take advantage of the customer’s curiosity about your brand.
- In helping you to retarget your email subscribers. You can upload a CSV of your emails to Facebook to create your own customer audience. This would be your buyer file; these are the customers that have a record of buying from you. They tend to be kind of a static audience, so give them your best shot with ads so they don’t burn out.
Keep Google Changes in Mind
The true backbone of digital consumer acquisition for the past ten years is undoubtedly Google. Keep these Google changes in mind as you gear up for the Holidays:
- Google now has four text ads that are at the top of organic results. So more real estate than ever is dedicated to their ads.
- Adwords is practically a new user interface for the Holidays, so make certain you know where all the important features are located.
- Google will enhance the shopping pleasure of search users with their brand-new showcase shopping ads. Google says this will account for around forty percent of future shopping searches in broad terms, like “winter clothes.” Just think what your shopping ads can do with all this new ad space!
- Another critical addition at the granular level is their system of using more than one campaign along with negative keywords to guide shopping ads at the level of the keyword.
Use Amazon Ads
The ads on Amazon continue to evolve. Many shopping trips now start at Amazon instead of at Google. Amazon added negative keywords to seller ads in late 2015. The Amazon vendor ad platform is gaining much more capability, including campaigns for Sponsored Products.
Don’t Reinvent the Wheel
Don’t rush to make every marketing ploy new. There are many old stratagems out there that are still worth using:
Offer Gift Cards
Gift cards never grow stale. Offer them right up until December 24. Make eye-popping deals, such as giving the customer a $120 gift card when they pay for a $100 gift card.
Get Your Email List Tidied Up
Now is the time to get your email marketing list strengthened and lengthened. Have it ready to blast off by the time the goblins start knocking on doors for Halloween.
Get Your Content Schedule Lined Up
Your content marketing schedule should be setup to publish content a week prior to each holiday as it comes. You’re not going to be writing posts about career advice unless you’ve got a clear tie in to a specific holiday along with it.
Up the Ante on Your Retargeting Goals
Stick to your retargeting goals, and up the ante. These are consumers who nearly went through with a purchase. Track them down and throw everything you’ve got at them; discounts, two for the price of one, a free X-dollar gift card when they place an order over X dollars. And, of course, that old standby — free shipping!
Target the most recent visits the most aggressively. If they visited yesterday they are more likely to respond to you than if they visited a month ago.
Get Your Marketplace in Order
Right now — don’t wait until after Halloween. Keep an eye on reviews of your brand. Have inventory ready to go. Keep your sellers in check; cheap brand knock-offs are becoming a more serious problem this year than ever before.
Now’s the time to run a few load tests if you’re expecting really serious traffic. Make sure you’re compliant and up to date on all security matters. Hackers don’t knock off just because of the Holidays. They’ll be out there, sniffing like wolfs, looking for the weakest link in the cyber security chain. Make sure you’re not that link!
Assess Your Customer Service Staffing Needs
The Holidays are the roughest time of the year for customer service. Assess your staff right now to forecast any problems in December. Then deal with those problems now.
Maybe the cold weather hasn’t reached your part of the country yet, and nobody has gotten that Santa suit out of the mothballs — but those Holiday sales don’t come just because you’ve been a good little marketer.
Use this Holiday marketing checklist today:
You’ve got to start your Holiday marketing planning now to reap that happy holiday harvest in a few months!
Shopping Image via Shutterstock