Get Ready Now for Successful Holiday Sales
Oct 7, 2010

How to Prepare Your Online Store to Christmas Season

Whether you’re new to online business or pro you realize that Holiday season is a chance to increase sales and get more profit. But besides the opportunities that come along with a Christmas time it also brings a lot of stress. Dealing with increased number of orders, adding new prices, etc. can turn to a real disaster during peak weeks. The only way to avoid this is an accurately made planning.

Here are a few tips that will help you to prepare your online store for a Holiday season and make the best out of your business.

1.Start Preparing Early
First of all you need to remember that a big part of your success depends on the preparation. A lot of stores start their Christmas campaigns in the end of October!

2. Equip Your Shopping Cart
Managing a shopping cart is a very tedious work in hot season. Approaching to Christmas you may get really stressed by managing all the orders and making a lot of changes to your store. In this case it will be very helpful to equip your store with 3d party software, to simplify and speed up work with your shopping cart. Using different plugins, modules, addons can significantly reduce time to resolve tasks, perform mass operations, easy export/import of store data and many others.
Think or talk to your employees to define what additional features and tools they need.

3. Choose Your Promotion Strategy
At this time of a year people expect price reductions from you and you’ll certainly try to come up to their expectations . Define what so special you will offer to your clients. Will it be in a form of discounts, coupons, free shipping service or gifts? What kind of discounts and for what products will you provide to your customers. Test in advance what works better. Think how you will change prices in your store for hundreds or thousands of products.

4. Make Advertisement
You can use different methods to make your customers aware of your special offers. Plan when you should start sending e-mails to let your customers “hear” you. Draft texts, write articles about your products and holiday propositions. Try out Google AdWords to find the best ads for each product in your online store.

5. Increase Your SEO ranking
Make sure that your web site is in top 10 results in Google when the users look for the products or services you offer. This will raise your selling activities extremely. The studies show that most people look only at the first page of Google search. So you better be among those 10 or you may lose your potential customers. In this case it will be very helpful to use SEO Modules for a certain shopping cart. They can help you to increase your SEO by creating static links to all your products, product categories, generating XML Sitemap, required for search engine optimization for Google, MSN, Yahoo, importing RSS news feeds from various sources and so much more.

6. Prepare Your Store Capacities
Make sure you can provide enough orders, deliver all the products on time etc. For this reason you may need to calculate expected sales volumes Mind that with holiday rush most popular products will be selling like hot sales. Check your web store’s load capacity to make sure that it can handle the increasing amount of sales.

Managing all the orders during your peak weeks can be really tough task especially transferring all inventory data to an accounting software like QuickBooks, Peachtree or Mail Order. Vest somebody with a function to enter data to your accounting package or purchase software to perform this automatically.

7. Add Holiday Mood to Your Website
Christmas trees, snowflakes, Santa will give your online store a festive look and appeal more and more visitors to your website. Put a new Christmas images to your products tool. Find new images you can use within your store, update products images to let your customers easily find what they want.

Brainstorm to find the best selling ideas and get yourself fully armed with right tools. Remember, in e-commerce the most successful are those who own the best technologies. Discover new opportunities for your business and let your Christmas be joyous and peaceful!
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