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3 Tips to Prepare for Holiday Shoppers
By Lauren Smith
8/24/2012 11:35:00 AM

In the heat of the summer, it's somewhat surreal to start talking about the holidays, but the reality is that it is never too early to prepare. It is important to start thinking about the busiest shopping season before the rush starts, so that when the rush sets in, you're set and ready to go. Here are some of our best tips to prepare:

"If you haven't already, implement mobile commerce." - Will Devlin, Ecommerce Manager at ShopVisible 

With the tremendous growth in mobile device use, retailers would be well served to get their mobile commerce solution and strategy in place now. Today's consumers rely on their smart phones and mobile devices as their central hubs of activity, and it only makes sense to give them the convenience of completing a transaction on them.

But to truly maximize on your opportunities, you must make the experience mobile-friendly. Utilize in-site search, optimize for speed and navigation, and create an easy checkout with features such as alternative payments. It's wise to also include a persistent cart feature, if the consumer wishes to complete the transaction on their desktop.

"Add ratings and reviews to your site." - Lauren Smith, Senior Marketing Coordinator at ShopVisible 

Consumers want to make informed decisions. A recent Google study reported that the average consumer uses 10.4 sources of information before making a buying decision. One of the most heavily relied on are ratings and reviews of fellow consumers. If they don't have a friend that had a direct experience, they're able to make a better informed purchasing decision by reading the ecommerce reviews of others.

As a nice bonus, the fresh content each rating and review provides to your site will provide a nice SEO boost. But you have to start now. Get them in place immediately so that the content has plenty of time to populate before the holiday shopping season. Talk to your commerce provider about adding ecommerce reviews to your site.

 "Create a multi-touchpoint strategy to reach as many buyers as possible." - Sean Cook, CEO at ShopVisible

In commerce circles, a lot of great and descriptive phrases such as multi-touchpoint and omni-channel strategy are being used with a high degree of popularity. A multi-channel strategy addresses today's reality that consumer buying preferences drive where businesses need to be.

Placing your products on channels like NexTag, Google, Amazon, or eBay allows you to expand your market presence and proactively reach an audience that might not have found your website organically.

If you don't have a multi-channel strategy in place, now's the perfect time to start. Make sure your CSE and marketplace integrations are well developed and tested before entering the holiday season.

What questions do you have about preparing your ecommerce site for the holidays? 

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