Cyber Monday – is your store ready?

shutterstock_164133029Managing director at e-commerce and digital marketing agency, Space 48, Jon Woodall, gives his practical advice on how online retailers should be preparing their store for Cyber Monday.

Are your stock levels full?

Make sure all of your promotional items are in fully in stock. It’s surprising how many retailers forget this simple task and get carried away with getting the bargains online as quickly as possible.

Have your best offers available

Make sure you come up with deals that will appeal to your customers.. Then create compelling campaigns to promote these deals and think about whether you want to pre-advertise your offers.

Don’t forget the importance of design

Keep your web design simple and focus on showcasing your products and offers. Don’t fall into the trap of cramming too much information on your website, as this will still put consumers off. Also, make sure your best offers are highlighted on your home page and above the fold.

Update your website trafficads

When updating your ads, remember to change your landing pages to draw attention to any special offers you might be running and make your offers easy to find. This might mean you may need to change or pause some ads but with the majority of traffic looking for deals and offers, now is the time to direct shoppers to your best deals.

Are your servers physically ready for the increase in demand?

It’s likely that your website will see a huge rise in traffic, so start running tests to check that your systems can cope. Online shoppers will quickly click away if they experience any issues at all with accessing your offers.

Check your delivery options

Look at your delivery lead times, the majority of retailers will be offering next day or two day delivery times on Cyber Monday. Be sure to present your customers with the best value as possible because that’s exactly what they’ll be looking for. Delivery times can make or break a sale so make sure you don’t miss out.

Prep your customer service team

Start planning a customer service action plan for Cyber Monday and the following days. Ensure your most senior staff are all able to work and knowledge is up to speed. Your online reputation is built on customer service, and Cyber Monday is the worst day of the year to let standards slip. Be sure you and your team are ready.

Utilise your social channels

Websites like Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter and Instagram are savvy ways of reaching existing and new customers. Your competitors will be doing the same and may tweak their offers having seen yours so there is a fine line to walk between going too early and too late.

Maximise your opportunities

Be sure to include newsletter sign up call to action buttons around your site and promote future deals and sales you may be running clearly around the site. Provide these new customers with a quick and hassle free check out process.

And don’t forget about security – a customer makes a decision about your site within the first 30 seconds of viewing it. Displaying card icons and security certificates clearly in the footer will gain their trust.