One of India’s biggest festivals, Diwali, is around the corner. The festival of lights and happiness has always been a time for gifting friends, families and colleagues. But in recent years, a big chunk of the offline sales have moved online, with Diwali now the top-grossing season in online sales. Here are some eCommerce examples and ideas that can help you boost online sales this year.
3 tips to prepare your online store for Diwali
“The needle is clearly moving from offline to online,” says Rohan Bhargava, co-founder of CashKaro.com. Build on this momentum with these eCommerce ideas.
Enhance your online store.
Incentivize shoppers with deals and discounts.
Focus on marketing your products.
Before we describe our suggestions for increasing your sales this Diwali, let us first examine a few eCommerce examples.
What you can learn from the big players
In the last three years, the online sales around the Diwali festival have grown bigger, with more brands launching eCommerce platforms. These eTailers are leaving no stones unturned to outdo one another, vying to offer the most attractive discounts and offers.
Just a few of the strategies fueling their success include:
- Introduction of innovative products before Diwali to increase buzz.
- Offer of on-time delivery as an incentive for shoppers to buy from them over others.
- Heavy advertising across television, radio, print, cinemas and digital to grab the attention of their consumers.
It is interesting to note some of the eCommerce ideas and trends this season. Many can be adapted for smaller online sellers.
Welcome more shoppers to your eStore
The Diwali season is predicted to attract over 20 million online shoppers this year, compared to 13.5 million last year. The overall landscape is highly competitive, but there is plenty you can do to see a bump in sales.
1. Enhance your online store
With the rapid increase in the number of smartphone users in India, more and more people are using their mobile phones for shopping. That’s why making sure your website can easily be used on mobiles tops our list of suggestions.
- Ensure your site is mobile friendly; anyone who visits an eCommerce site that is hard to use will quickly click away.
- Make your website colorful and rich in design — that’s what Diwali is all about.
- Check your website navigation; is it obvious how to browse and buy from your store?
- Update your product descriptions and product images if they are old or incomplete.
- Get SSL encryption if you don’t already have it to earn the good reputation.
- Test your website performance, as fast page loads matters a lot during festive seasons.
- Review your checkout process to make sure it’s clear, easy and error-free.
- Update your shipping/return policies if needed; customers will be quicker to buy if they know they can return the item.
- Start collecting email subscribers by adding a signup form to your website, blog and social media pages.
The majority of goods last year were bought on mobile phones and the trend is expected to continue. Make sure your website is easy to open, fast to load and simple to use on mobile devices.
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2. Incentivize shoppers with deals and discounts
Many retailers are now offering extra discounts by partnering with cashback websites like CashKaro.com. Buyers prefer shopping through websites that offer extra cash back on top of ongoing discounts.
Check out our complete list of ideas:
- Direct discounts on products can be the most transparent way to lure customers. ‘Buy one get one’ or ‘flash sales’ for a few hours can get more visitors to your site.
- Start a loyalty program that gives members early access to sales and better deals while they shop.
- Set up cashless payments on your site. Partner with a few banks so that customers who pay using those bank cards get access to instant discounts.
- Offer in-store pickup, free shipping or guaranteed delivery date during the festive season.
When a customer is trying to decide between you and another online seller, small things can make all the difference.
3. Focus on marketing your products
It’s important to do all you can to increase the likelihood that shoppers will find you online. A few ways to do this:
- Launch a Facebook store with a clear call-to-action.
- List a few of your most popular products on one or more marketplaces that sell goods online. Make sure your listings include a link back to your web store.
- Share and promote each and every sale on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and other social media where you are active.
- Engage online store visitors with live chat.
- Add ratings or reviews to your website, as customers trust such feedback.
It’s a good idea to set aside some time to review what worked and what didn’t once Diwali is over. This will aid you in planning for next year’s festive season.
Use these eCommerce examples to your advantage
Diwali has undoubtedly become the golden season for the country’s eCommerce shops in the last couple of years.
A few eCommerce trends such as the rise of mobile shopping, coupled with developments in connectivity, logistics and regulations are set to make Diwali a blockbuster selling proposition for Indian eTailers for years to come!