With sales generally spiking during November and December, it’s likely most online retailers will hit a new year sales slump. With a bit of planning and a few growth-hacking strategies, you can turn your post-holiday slump into a conversion opportunity. Here are five smart ways online retailers can hack their way out of a post-holiday-slump.
Hack One: New Year, New Marketing
Come January 1st, and we’re all consumed by our new year’s resolutions. While consumers are planning drastic life changes, from a retailers perspective, it’s an excellent opportunity to market to the rapidly changing consumer mindset.
Align your message to fit into the resolution mindset and position your products and promotions to encourage your customer’s to embrace their ‘New Year, New You’ efforts.
Products that help with organisation or productivity are a big hit. So too are health-related products, fashion, activewear and gym wear, health food and supplements and homewares that help overhaul.
For extra impact, curate a new year’s gift guide or landing page and create campaigns which push traffic directly to those pages.
Hack Two: Embrace FOMO
With the Christmas deadline now passed, consumers have little incentive to act with urgency. That’s where fear of missing out (FOMO) comes into play. It’s no secret social proofing is the holy grail of marketing, and the best way to create a sense of urgency is FOMO.
FOMO is a proven psychological trigger which creates a fear that you may be missing out on something, and because no one likes being left behind – it’s a useful tool.
While more traditional social proofing tactics like limited offers and countdown timers do help conversions, FOMO plugins are much more effective. FOMO plugins use technology to show how many people are viewing the same product, and who just purchased what. They can also show how other visitors engage with your website. Depending on which plugin you choose, you could also integrate your website activity into your social networks and broadcast your FOMO to your Facebook feed.
If you’ve got potential customers browsing but not buying, this could be an effective strategy to encourage a purchase.
Hack Three: Leverage Live Chat
According to data from live chat platform, Intercom, website visitors are 82% more likely to convert to customers if they’ve chatted with you first. With conversions that high, it’s hard to go past this strategy.
In an age of instant gratification, live chat instantly gives your customers the answers they’re seeking. And because it’s seemingly frictionless, website visitors can have their questions answered in real-time, removing any obstacles to conversions.
With so many live chat options on the market, it’s a great tool to turn on during the post-new-year sales slump to help you engage and convert your online visitors.
Hack Four: Leverage Holiday Customers
If your online store saw a spike in customers in the lead up to the holidays, now’s the time to leverage them. With the Christmas craze now settling, retargeting can be an extremely effective strategy to bring unconverted customers back to your site. While retargeting is generally geared towards visitors who haven’t yet converted, it can also be a good way to showcase complimentary products for customers who did purchase from you.
As most people usually have a post-Christmas holiday-sized hole in their budget, adding a coupon code or extra discount definitely won’t hurt.
Hack Five: Over-deliver
With most retailers going above and beyond to win new customers during the holiday period, online retailers who differentiate with next-level customer service will no doubt experience higher conversions.
With fast, free shipping quickly becoming the norm for online retailers, eCommerce stores will need to find ways to up the ante and turn shipping into a competitive advantage. While you generally can’t control what happens to your order once it leaves your warehouse, you can control how that’s communicated to your customer. Transparent tracking gives your customers complete visibility over where their order is, right up to delivery. Smart email and SMS notifications mean your customers know when their order is being delivered and can plan their day with peace of mind.
With post-holiday returns usually hitting an all-time high after the holiday rush, retailers that want to go above and beyond will need to overhaul their returns policy. Eliminate the logistical headaches for you and your customers by giving your customers an easy to follow process via a self-service portal.
Don’t forget to monitor and reply to your social media comments or product reviews. Engaging with customers during slower periods helps remind them about your store and sets a precedent that you’re interested in more than revenue.
Don’t worry if your reviews are less than perfect, taking the time to respond to the good, bad and ugly shows you’re committed to improving customer experience.
Rather than slipping deep into a post-holiday slump, put your customer first, get creative, channel FOMO and kickstart your new year on an up. While it’s entirely normal to see a dip directly after the Christmas period, the upside is, you’ve got a bigger database to remarket to. Learning how to leverage your holiday activity can help you foster repeat customers who will buy again and again.