In the largest multi-ethnic democracy in the world, Christmas fervour transcends religious beliefs. Indians are as affectionate and respectful towards Christmas as they are with Diwali or Eid. If you own a small business, it is important to use eCommerce marketing strategies if you want your business to be seen amongst the eCommerce conglomerates with colossal marketing budgets.
You need to promote your product well to attract consumers who are looking for gifts.
Here are four easy and effective ways to promote your Christmas gifts and have the cash registers jingle.
Show them you have gifts
There are some simple ways to tell shoppers you have Christmas gifts. Here are four.
Get in the spirit.
Hang some (Google) mistletoe.
Sleigh on social media.
Wreath through networking opportunities.
If you’re ready to promote your products this Christmas season, keep reading.
1. Get in the spirit
Your business approach needs to be adjusted to attract the December shoppers. Try to give your website a seasonal makeover, from adding simple holiday banners to adopting a Christmas-style colour scheme. Even small changes can make your business feel a lot more relevant to the season.
A few ideas to get you started:
- You can download a Christmas template then create a landing page featuring products that can be given as Christmas gifts. Reuse the template for a couple of years to average the cost out.
- Rebrand your product range with Christmas-related tags. Or just modify the look of your packaging to drive sales for products that conventionally may not be associated with Christmas.
- Combine various related products to create a pick-n-go Christmas gift basket. Generate as many ideas as possible; then choose the best ones to offer.
- Track your best-selling or top-searched products and offer ‘exclusive deals’ to prompt action from visitors.
- Three-quarters of shoppers fill their carts then leave before checkout — lure them back with an email.
- Drive repeat business from customers who made purchases through your site previously with sweeteners. Read this article to learn how to set discount prices.
Editor’s note: Online Store from GoDaddy automatically emails a reminder to any shopper who abandons their cart without checking out. Try it free.
2. Hang some (Google) mistletoe
Most of the gift-related shopping has moved to the digital playground. And most gift browsing takes place on Google, Bing or other search engines.
Your website must be found by search engines before customers can find it.
Add or verify your business listing on Google My Business. This service is free and increases your chances of being found on searches and Google Maps. People who see your listing can leave ratings and reviews and answer quick questions about your business. You can put up regular posts displaying your wares (be sure to link it back to your website, where you can close the sale). All of this gives more credibility to your establishment.
If you are able, set aside a specific Christmas budget for Google Ads to boost your eCommerce marketing. Under this scheme, you create a text ad that Google displays to people who are looking for similar products or services. You pay a fee whenever someone clicks on your ad.
Google Ads can take time to work, so plan to start advertising early.
Editor’s note: Online Store automatically reviews your store and optimizes it for search engines like Google, Yahoo! and Bing.
3. Sleigh on social media
For non-intrusive eCommerce marketing, harness the power of social networks such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. These networks offer a great opportunity to make your product or service visible to millions of people across the country.
Start your social campaign early to capture mind-space. Schedule regular posts to stay there.
Facebook now pro-actively asks businesses to engage with customers around the holiday season via posts. Just as with your website, revamp your business page for the holidays, create new product brochures, offer discounts or create a call-to-action for special Christmas deals via Facebook Shop.
Crafting the right content for Instagram is very important. Have a theme for the string of posts that you propose to use for promoting your Christmas sales. With every post, Instagram allows you to put up to 30 hashtags. These hashtags could drastically boost engagement.
Select your hashtags by combining popular Christmas terms with your product(s). A niche hashtag will help get the right amount of visibility and a better chance at attracting merry stocking-stuffers.
Quick tips for social media
It’s not necessary to be active on all social networks — in fact, it’s perfectly acceptable to devote yourself to one. Keep these tips in mind as you go:
- Both Facebook and Instagram allow you to post Stories that remain accessible for 24 hours. Look at it as an opportunity to interact with your customers once every day.
- Ensure that your social accounts are linked to each other so that posts to one channel appear across all social networks. Use an app such as Buffer to schedule content ahead of time.
- Always reply to comments and queries, preferably within a 24-hour window. Apps like Hootsuite make it easier to track all responses from one place.
- Photos are good but videos are better. Watching a product in action creates greater interest.
- Run contests or offer eCoupons linking back to your site to incentivise people to like and share your post/profile, share their personal details or make a purchase through social media.
4. Wreath through networking opportunities
Not all eCommerce marketing strategies need to target mass exposure. Sometimes a focused and/or personal approach is more effective.
Text and email
Nothing beats personalised texts or emails sent to existing customers. Create catchy newsletters or send a custom Christmas card and play Santa Claus by offering eGift vouchers, discounts, free gift-wrapping services, complimentary delivery services or other perks. Indians love a deal, even if it means only for a few bucks.
Editor’s note: With GoDaddy Email Marketing it’s simple to collect email addresses and send great-looking emails that lead to sales.
The Bollywood brigade may be too far-fetched for your pocket, but new-age influencers from social networks can help you gain visibility. Look for influencers who represent a certain synergy with your product or service and who are highly engaged with their follower base. Offer a barter deal to the influencer by offering free services to them and/or discounted offers to their followers.
In January 2018, WhatsApp India launched the WhatsApp Business app targeted toward small and medium businesses. At the same time, the company launched the beta version of the WhatsApp Pay feature, which uses the Unified Payment Interface (UPI) that is supported by all major banks.
WhatsApp literally allows you to set up shop in the customer’s phone — for free!
Just as with the communication app, WhatsApp Business and the payment facility come at no cost to you. The new eCommerce feature allows you to forward eBrochures, communicate with customers and receive payment — all through the single app.
Try our eCommerce marketing tips
We’ve suggested a multitude of strategies — some require funds, others just require effort. Plan and deploy your campaign as early as possible to gain maximum traction.
When using multiple strategies, overdoing things could backfire. Structure your campaigns in a way that they complement each other.
Take advantage of the analytics provided by the various marketing media to fine-tune your strategies and enhance your results.
The carnival of a shopping season is almost upon us. It’s time to put your eCommerce elves to work and get Santa to deliver gifts for you this Christmas. Happy Holidays!