Prepare Your Product Feeds for the Holiday Season - last-minute tips
Posted on November 28, 2023 (Last Updated: January 22, 2024)
With Black Friday behind us, the holiday shopping frenzy is still going strong. So, keep reading to discover how you can be fully prepared and smash those sales targets!
Despite Black Friday is behind us, the holiday shopping season remains in full swing, with a significant 44 percent of consumers indicating they postponed their purchasing decisions until the post-Black Friday period. This trend underscores a critical window of opportunity for e-commerce businesses to strategically refine their product feed approaches.
This period presents a vital opportunity to implement last-minute adjustments to product feed strategies that can significantly influence sales outcomes. This phase is not merely about choosing a strategy, but about deploying data-driven, nuanced approaches to product showcasing and targeting. It's crucial to leverage analytics to understand consumer behaviour trends during this period, tailoring product feeds to align with the evolving preferences and purchasing patterns of shoppers.
In the context of advanced e-commerce tactics, this means optimizing product feeds for higher visibility and engagement. This could involve revising product descriptions for SEO optimization ( check this blog for SEO tips ), utilizing dynamic pricing strategies to stay competitive, and highlighting key holiday-centric products that are likely to capture the interest of late-season shoppers. Additionally, considering the integration of real-time feedback mechanisms can provide insights that allow for rapid adjustments in strategy, enhancing the potential to capture a larger share of the holiday market.
Therefore, while Black Friday may have concluded, the heightened activity in the holiday shopping arena offers a substantial opportunity for e-commerce professionals to refine and execute product feed strategies that can effectively boost sales even at the eleventh hour.
The focus should be on agility, data-driven decision-making, and strategic optimization of product feeds to maximize the sales potential during this peak shopping season.
When discussing the website traffic of online stores, particularly around the holiday season, we observe a significant surge. This period is marked by high consumer anticipation for deals and discounts, making it a critical time for online retailers. Shoppers, who are often willing to wait for this part of the year, are on the lookout for attractive offers, highlighting the importance for e-commerce sites to be fully prepared to handle an influx of first-time visitors, along with returning customers.
The conclusion of Black Friday should not signal an end in preparation for online retailers. While some might perceive it as too late to initiate or modify their product feeds and marketing strategies, it's crucial to understand that the opportunity window is still wide open. The approach of 'better late than never' is particularly relevant here. With Christmas fast approaching, it presents a significant opportunity for online stores to capitalize on the holiday shopping frenzy.
(you can read about how to prepare your e-commerce business for reduced holiday spending here )
As specialists in e-commerce optimization, we emphasize the importance of not underestimating the remaining time leading up to Christmas.
This period can be pivotal for annual sales figures. Our focus should be on collaboratively devising and implementing strategies that maximize the potential of this holiday season. This involves not only fine-tuning product feeds ( learn how other brands did that here ) to ensure they are attractive and competitive but also optimizing various aspects of the online shopping experience. These include ensuring website performance and scalability to handle high traffic, optimizing user experience for ease of navigation and purchase, and deploying targeted marketing campaigns to capture the attention of both new and returning customers.
Enough of introductions, let’s get into the real actions part.
Holiday Season Strategies for Your E-commerce Store
We will hit it off with the general tips we would like to address and then get a deep dive into what we are best at - optimising your feeds and what you can do before the holidays begin.
Let’s go all in into the festivity
Give your store a festive makeover.
Who doesn't appreciate a Christmas decoration? The same is true for your website's appearance, perform some holiday reskinning and tone your promotional banners to the season you're marketing. Allow users to experience the Christmas mood.
This could be:
- It might be as simple as changing the design and colour of the festive CTA.
- Pop-up holiday messages or little graphics, for example.
- Alter the images and graphics.
- Reorganise your website's navigation.
Improve and optimise your feed quality
- Develop a detailed holiday campaign plan, setting dates for launching ads and promotions. Early preparation mitigates potential issues and ensures a seamless sales experience.
- Strategic Competitor Analysis
- Utilize tools like WakeupData Actions for price monitoring, gaining insights into competitors’ pricing strategies.
- Adapt your pricing and product feed accordingly. Use lower prices as leverage in your feed and bid higher on these items. Conversely, exclude higher-priced items from feeds to optimize ad spending.
- Implement filters to exclude low-margin products and include cost prices in feeds for accurate profit margin calculations.
- Stay informed about current events (e.g., pandemics, fuel shortages) and political changes that could impact deliveries and costs. This knowledge aids in inventory and budgeting strategies.
- Intelligent Bid Increases on Google Ads
- Leverage the rise in mobile shopping and the openness of consumers to new retailers during key shopping days like Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
- Increase bids selectively, focusing on high-margin products to maximize ROI.
- Data Optimization
- With mobile searches for products increasing, ensure that your product data is fully optimized.
- Utilize tools like WakeupData Actions for data analysis and WakeupData
Connect for automated rule creation to enhance data quality.
- Merchant Center and Product Feed Review
- Regularly update your feeds according to product data specifications.
- Utilize Google-specific attributes like 'sell_on_google_quantity', 'availability', 'sale_price', 'signature_required', and 'purchase_quantity_limit' for effective product representation.
- Configuring Return Settings
- Adjust return policies for the holiday period with seasonal overrides.
- Implement special processing rules for returns and consider returnless refunds for low-cost items to reduce expenses.
- Enhancing Customer Engagement
- Use Merchant Promotions on Buy on Google to attract customers with online promotions.
- Ensure accurate delivery time settings to maintain high Retailer Standards ratings and customer satisfaction.
For a comprehensive understanding of these strategies and more, consider a free demo of the WakeupData platform. It's crucial to stay efficient and well-informed to optimize your online store's performance during the bustling holiday season.
How about the ads themselves?
It's paramount for marketers to master the art of ad creatives, ensuring it resonates with users through engaging and relevant content and that applies for holidays in full power. When mapping out your campaign schedule, factor in ad creatives that resonate with both international and local celebrations in your target market, be careful of that. Engaging in these festivities enhances your brand's connection with users and boosts your local relevance. Below are some creative strategies that have yielded positive results judging by our client's experience:
- Adjust the Background and Color Palette
Tailoring ad creatives to reflect seasonal themes can significantly impact conversions. Modify the background and frame of your creative to align with the current season or holiday. For instance, Christmas is often linked with winter imagery, while Thanksgiving evokes autumnal themes. This thematic consistency enhances the appeal of your ad.
Colours play a crucial role in setting the tone for an occasion and evoking emotions. Select colours that are synonymous with specific events. Green is emblematic of St. Patrick’s Day, symbolizing Ireland and luck, while red and pink are iconic for Valentine’s Day, embodying love and affection. Appropriate colour choices in your ad can draw user attention and enhance your message's emotional impact.
- Feature Season-Appropriate Characters
Incorporating characters or familiar figures can attract new users and re-engage dormant ones. Display these characters in seasonal settings or outfits to capture user interest. Including app elements that reflect the season can further drive performance. For example, use Easter or spring themes for a puzzle game, hearts for Valentine’s Day, or vibrant colours for the Holi Festival.
- Create Festive Ads
Embrace the festive spirit in your ads. This could mean Easter bunnies and colourful eggs, Halloween costumes and spooky elements, or other holiday-themed visuals to increase the fun factor. Ads that are festive and engaging are more likely to maximize conversions.
Ensure your ad copy complements your graphics. Engaging copy can enhance the seasonal atmosphere of your ad and prompt action. Use clever, timely phrases linked to specific holidays, like “Boo!” for Halloween or “Merry” for Christmas.
- Leverage Data-Driven Creatives
Effective creatives need to reach the right audience. Utilize targeting and segmentation data to inform your seasonal creative campaigns. Analyze your data thoroughly before optimizing your creative.
Even the best creative will fall flat if it doesn't reach the appropriate audience. However, when targeted correctly, it can significantly increase conversion rates and ROI. Data-driven creatives are essential for optimal programmatic advertising performance.
We have prepared even more tips for you:
- Optimizing Creatives for User Acquisition: Test various creative options to identify the most effective. We’ve observed that holiday-themed creatives outperform regular ones during festive seasons.
- Retargeting with Seasonal Creatives: Relevance is key to in-app marketing. Consumers seek engaging ads that resonate with their interests. Combine appealing creative with precise targeting to deliver optimal advertising performance. During holidays, retargeting can reconnect you with interested shoppers, encouraging them to complete their purchases. A strategic retargeting approach maximizes the value of existing app users and attracts high-value users.
Despite the end of Black Friday, the window for impactful marketing and strategic optimization is far from closed. This period is not just about capitalizing on the festive frenzy but about smart, data-driven strategies that align with consumer behaviour and preferences.
For e-commerce professionals, now is the time to focus on refining product feeds, optimizing ad creatives, and ensuring a seamless shopping experience for both new and returning customers. Adjusting your product feeds to the season, enhancing the visual appeal of your website, and employing effective pricing strategies are key. Furthermore, creative and strategic use of ad content, including seasonal themes and colours, relevant characters, and festive elements, can significantly boost engagement and conversions.
Remember, it's not just about attracting traffic, it's about converting visits into sales. This requires a holistic approach - from ensuring website functionality and user experience to implementing targeted marketing campaigns and leveraging data-driven insights for ad optimization.
As the holiday season continues, seize every opportunity to stand out in a crowded market. Utilize tools like WakeupData for precise data optimization and gain a solid partner in the face of our customer support team.
Embrace the power of retargeting to recapture the interest of potential customers. And above all, keep your strategies agile and responsive to the dynamic holiday market and never forget it is never too late to start using the right tools.
If you have any questions please feel free to book a meeting with our team and discuss your concerns and aims.