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22 Oct 2020

5 eCommerce Strategies to Favour in Preparation for the Holidays

5 eCommerce Strategies to Favour in Preparation for the Holidays

Since 2020, holiday shopping has undoubtedly looked a whole lot different: consumers of all generations have adopted new online shopping behaviours. Facebook also notes that 58% of Canadian adults want to spend less time physically in stores following the COVID-19 pandemicĀ¹. We expect consumers to repeat this experience for their Christmas shopping!

To prepare for this special time of year, Novatize invites you to consider 5 important success factors that will help you with your strategic preparation for the holidays.

1. The diversity of the platforms where you advertise

A typical and costly mistake is to put all your eggs in one basket when the time comes to think about your advertising placements. The reality is that if you only rely on one or two conventional digital marketing platforms, this could have a negative impact on your ROAS (return on ad spend). In other words, if you only advertise on Facebook and Instagram and neglect all the other platforms, you risk negatively affecting your potential return on investment. Media traffic is dense, and advertisers fight for the best spaces (especially during BFCM and the holiday season).

See digital more broadly and think outside the box. A strategy enhanced by a traditional media mix can also be very profitable and balanced. Make sure your placements follow a logical sequence according to your customer journey and your acquisition funnel.

Here are a few digital placement opportunities that you might consider:

– Traditional social media such as Facebook and Instagram

– YouTube

– Newsletters

– Google Ads (Search, Display, Shopping)

– Pinterest

– Reddit

– Spotify

– Waze and Google Maps to encourage drive-to-store

– Programmatic and native banners

– Online editorials (LaPresse, JDM/JDQ, Narcity, Radio-Canada, etc.)

– Web series and TV catch-up placements (Noovo,, etc.)

– Sponsored podcasts

– Partnerships with influencers or bloggers

– Product placement

– Etc.

In short:

  • Donā€™t rely only on auctioned advertising placements (e.g., Google, Facebook). This strategy may have a negative impact on your ROAS.
  • Have a balanced digital and conventional media mix
  • Dare to try less conventional digital placements
  • Practice modelling your customer journey and consider your placements accordingly

2. The quality of your creatives

Holiday season or not, the success of a promotional campaign depends above all on the creative content. Unique, quality visuals that represent your brand are guarantees of success. This is your first click generator and a significant attention grabber.

According to a survey conducted by Klaviyo, brand recognition and trust is a key motivating factor for online purchasesĀ². The creatives of your promotions must be consistent with your visual universe to ensure the credibility of your message as well as brand recognition. Indeed, visually attractive content will require a lower impression frequency to ensure retention by the target.

To ensure that you optimize your advertising campaigns by emphasizing the most effective visuals, it may be a good idea to conduct an A/B test in preparation for a major campaign, such as Cyber Weekend.

Tailor your visual content to the various dissemination media and the target of each one. Prepare all the variations necessary to highlight your message.

Make sure you stand out from the crowd and rise to the top; itā€™s time to set yourself apart!

In short:

  • Place as much importance on the dissemination strategy as on the quality of the content shared. $1000 invested in original and engaging content can generate more income than $5000 invested in generic content.
  • Attract attention with unique creatives to stand out
  • Create visuals consistent with your brand universe
  • Adapt and vary the content according to the dissemination mediaĀ 
  • Test your visuals with upstream A/B testing

3. Rapid retargeting

It has been shown that an average consumer needs several contacts with the same brand before making a purchasing decision. Maximize your chances by establishing a carefully calculated retargeting strategy. Itā€™s always important to retarget visitors who are interested in your products. In a crucial period like Q4, this strategy becomes even more decisive. Customers are in an active buying period, but they are also exposed to a very large number of advertising messages. Like a normal shopping situation, Cyber Weekend typically leads to a very different buying decision-making process for the consumer. The context results in a ā€œrace to purchasesā€ or even a ā€œrace to discounts.ā€ The typical visitor will see their conversion window move from a few days or even weeks to a few hours or a weekend, hence the importance of implementing a rapid and motivational retargeting strategy. Focus on an attractive and catchy retargeting approach in which you emphasize the competitive advantages that will entice the customer.

In short:

  • During a promotional period, reduce your retargeting times
  • Actively retarget abandoned shopping carts (a few hours at most after they were abandoned) and prepare a flurry of several emails
  • Implement retargeting campaigns that follow the logic of your typical customer journey
  • Focus on dynamic and personalized ads (the items abandoned in the cart or the pages visited)
  • Make attractive and catchy retargeting attempts
  • Monitor the impression frequency of your retargeting efforts and adjust your budget accordingly. There is nothing worse than showing a customer who has abandoned a cart the same ad 12 times!

4. The mobile experience

During the 2019 BFCM period, 69% of transactions were made via mobile on all Shopify stores. In 2020, this number continues to grow. Consumers increasingly prefer mobile to other channels. A non-optimized or friction-causing mobile experience could be a purchase obstacle for your potential customers. According to GlobalWebIndex, 75% of baby boomers in Canada claim that they have experienced irritation when making a purchase on mobileĀ³.

So, make sure that you can offer an experience that is as good on mobile as it is on desktop, or even simpler.

If you make changes for the holidays (such as adding buttons, calls to action, pop-ups, or other communication tools), make sure that they look as good on mobile as they do on desktop.

If you have promo codes, make sure that the space to enter these codes in the checkout is easy to find or use URLs that already include these promotions to simplify the use of the code.

Finally, make sure that your promotion and acquisition strategies are effective on mobile, and preview them to confirm the quality.

In short:

  • Your mobile website will be visited more often and generate more transactions than your native website, so make sure to offer an optimal experience without any friction.
  • Tailor your advertising offensives to mobile.

5. Your return and delivery policies

Typically underestimated by online merchants, the details of your policies are often carefully examined by discerning customers. And when a glitch happens with an order, this is the first thing they will look at. This year more than ever, the experience of your customers relies heavily on managing expectations and clear communication. During the busy season, it is very likely that some consumers are making their first online purchases. Make sure to guide and reassure them. According to Klaviyo, clear exchange and return policies are among the top 3 factors encouraging purchases for baby boomers, generation X, and millennialsā“.

During BFCM, if you are anticipating traffic that will impact your production and delivery times, update your policies and communicate them to your customers.

Give yourself a safety cushion by inflating the expected number of delivery days. In these busy times, your customers will be accommodating of additional delays if they are properly communicated.

To make work easier for your team and your carriers, you could opt for tactics such as increasing the return period, rewarding in-store pickup, encouraging early purchases, or creating a promotion to encourage buying during a less busy period.

In short:

  • Adjust your delivery standards
  • Keep your delivery and return policies up to date and communicate them clearly
  • Add an in-store pickup option
  • Reward buyers who choose this option
  • Offer contactless pickup to ensure compliance with the health measures established by public health

In Conclusion

actively prepare for the holiday season. Ask yourself the right questions and consider the factors specific to the current situation.

If you have any questions, or if you would like support with the design or implementation of your eCommerce strategy, contact the team from Novatize.


šŸ“ž: +1 844 932 6682

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