Buck up your store for the busiest e-commerce seasons
Mega Sales Season? In Asia, there are 10.10, Singles’ Day -11.11, 12.12 and Year End Sales (YES) whereas Black Friday and Cyber Monday are popular worldwide.
Do you know the origin of Singles’ Day Mega Sales? 11.11 was the first Asia one-day online shopping event started in China in 1993. It initially served as a celebration day for single people without a romantic partner. Businesses started strategically targeting those who reward themselves with certain gifts on the day.
Thereafter, it was rebranded as “Singles’ Day”. It is now the world’s largest one-day shopping festival, with 231.5 billion yuan (US$30.8 billion) in online sales over a 24-hour period in 2018. China’s largest e-commerce platform Alibaba adopted the date for its annual online sales in 2009.
All these mega sales/shopping festivals are golden opportunities for businesses to increase their Gross Merchandise Value (GMV). However, is your store ready to increase the sales conversion rate on these special occasions?
Let’s start by looking at these numbers
Google/IPSOS Double Day Sales Events Study stated that 9 in 10 mega sale purchases were made after planning and research, with customers spending more than two-thirds of their shopping time online browsing, getting ideas, researching, and making purchases. As mega-sale shoppers move between channels, they are also less loyal to a brand or platform. 78% of shoppers from Southeast Asia used five or more shopping channels during the recent 6.6 mega sale day, and 75% of them visited more than one marketplace website while shopping.
Based on Shopify’s 2022 Black Friday data, peak sales per minute achieved $3.5 million USD on Black Friday. Top product categories include apparel & accessories, followed by health & beauty, and home & garden. 15% of the total orders are cross-border orders worldwide on Black Friday.
According to the 2022 Deloitte Black Friday-Cyber Monday survey, 39% of holiday buyers are doing their shopping earlier this season. Target, Walmart, and other giants will be trying to spread their sales season across whole months instead of just one or two days.
There are higher demands for deals. Bargain hunting is on the rise. Consumers plan to spend 50% of their budget during Black Friday Cyber Monday (BFCM) festival to take advantage of the deals compared to last year was 43%. We believe that due to inflation, consumers are becoming more price concern.
Big e-commerce players saw a revenue boost of 110% on Cyber Monday, whereas small e-commerce businesses saw a revenue boost of 104% (Adobe, 2021) 34% of online shoppers in the US said they are very likely to shop online on Cyber Monday. (Statista, 2021)
According to a study by Statista, an increasing number of US consumers are looking to social media for holiday shopping inspiration. In fact, around 70% of shoppers said they have consulted at least one social network when making their purchase decisions during peak season 2021. There is also continued growth in the usage of Buy Now, Pay Later (BNPL) services among US shoppers.
What should you get ready for the e-commerce peak seasons of 2023?
Ensure your product data completeness
As the statistic showed that shoppers spend most of their time researching the product before making the purchase even though they are discount buyers. Make sure your product data are complete so that the shoppers can easily access your product information. Product attributes can be complicated and cluttered including those visual assets, tutorials, prices, reviews and different language elements.
A Product Information Management (PIM) system as a consolidated product information repository can ensure your product data quality by different teams through workflow & approval processes. The system will have product completeness scoring standards for each of your products.
Provide order and fulfilments convenience
According to an Accenture report, 83% of businesses this year will continue allowing online orders. Therefore, online orders should expect steady growth over time, especially during the peak season. Retailers need to be very careful so that they do not overpromise and underdeliver as this will directly affect the overall customer experience. This may lead to permanent customer loss.
As the online competition grows, providing more fulfilments flexibility to your customers can help you win the deals. With the real-time inventory tracking system, retailers are able to automate order routing & workflow and enrich fulfillment options such as home delivery, Buy Online Pay in Store(BOPIS), Click & Collect and Ship from Store. Prioritize your store and warehouse inventory with Order Management System (OMS).
Boost visibility with advertisement
Despite the fierce competition, retailers should not avoid the peak seasons as the number of customers with buying intents and ready budgets are huge. Make sure your brand exposure can reach your customer’s eyes regardless of the types of media and channels so that you are on top of their minds when making purchases.
No matter whether using ATL, BTL or TTL, it is important that it can gain efficient visibility among the shoppers. It is also highly recommended to target your existing customers to encourage repeat purchases. Marketing Metrics stated the probability of selling to an existing customer is up to 14 times higher than the probability of selling to a new customer.
Capture consumers across platforms
Make sure your stores are readily available in famous sales channels in your targeted countries especially those your customers are in. Shoppers move between platforms to acquire the best deals. Besides brand.com, shoppers are more likely to check their desired products in marketplaces. There are top e-commerce marketplaces in Southeast Asia that you can strategically target based on the country. For eg, Lazada and Shopee are the top marketplace channels for both Singapore and Malaysia. Regardless of the platform the consumers used, you wouldn’t like to lose them.
Optimize your website performance
Your website will experience higher traffic during the mega-sales festival which might cause slow loading time and even crash. Get your website partner to optimize your website or migrate your website to a reliable and stable platform. Some straightforward tasks to improve your website speed could be compressing images and removing unwanted pages, coding, and scripts.
Ensure your website’s tools and features are working properly, which includes functions for entering discount codes, checkout and other buttons. Test all the functions before the peak season so that you have sufficient time to fix the bugs if any. CLEARgo can provide professional audit services to your e-commerce website in order to optimize your website including UX/UI improvements.
Retailers should get ready for the shopping festivals through targeted strategies toward customer experience, inventory and brand visibility to optimize the revenue. Improving operation management and keeping up with the demands enables the business to practice an agile approach in any scenarios. This is where business agility comes in.