In this opinion piece, Joe Thymian (pictured below), APAC regional vice president of SLI Systems, shares his top tips to help Australian retailers make the most of their e-commerce website this Easter.
Many families across Australia will be waking up this Sunday to the smell of hot cross buns, preparing a big lunch for the family, and perhaps exchanging a gift or two.
Easter is always an egg-citing opportunity to bring the family together – but this does not come without lots of planning and preparation. Easter is also a great opportunity for brands to build a bond of their own with shoppers – and see sales soar.
According to the National Retail Federation, the average person celebrating Easter plans to spend planned to spend an average of $221.39 – a whopping 58 per cent more than bricks-and-mortar Easter shoppers.
More than most holidays, Easter is driven by e-commerce. This is largely because shopping options are focused on the traditional option of chocolate or other food items. However, the (understandable) desire to escape the mad supermarket rush the day before a public holiday is also a major contributor.
So, how can brands offer a helping hand to Australians on their own Easter supermarket hunt? Here are four top tips for your e-commerce website to help you make the most of upcoming Easter celebrations.
- Cut the effort to find egg-sactly what shoppers need
On an ordinary day, shoppers will casually stroll through the supermarket as they work their way down their shopping list. However, in the face of an imminent long weekend, time is of the essence, and online attention spans can be much shorter. Rich autocomplete technology ensures relevant product images are displayed in a drop-down under the search bar as users enter search terms. This functionality helps visitors quickly identify the products or brands they are looking for, and has proven to dramatically increase conversions as much as 10 times.
- ‘Easter’ is the word
If shoppers type ‘Easter’ in your site’s search box, make sure your site returns relevant results right away. Shoppers are probably looking for different products to what they do throughout the year. Identifying seasonal products in demand and creating synonyms for each of these can help take users to the products they are looking for.
- Be prepared for a last-minute rush
Unlike Christmas, shopping for Easter generally takes place in a shorter period of time, with the bulk of Easter-related purchases taking place in the fortnight or even days leading up to Good Friday – particularly when it comes to food purchases. Shoppers will also be stocking up on all the necessities to tide them over for the long weekend when they may not be able to get to the shops.
You can capture those last-minute customers by offering same-day delivery on Easter Saturday, or even motivate them to buy earlier by offering discounted delivery earlier in the week.
- Remember, the Easter bunny isn’t the only one on the go
The world is mobile and Australians particularly have embraced this technology. Of the 15 million people using Facebook on mobile, 10 million do so on mobile every day. Further, Roy Morgan Research shows 45 per cent of Australians research products or services online before buying in-store.
It’s critical your site is optimised for mobile to allow customers to easily search and find what they’re looking for on a small screen. Simple things like centring the search box, using an autocomplete feature and ensuring search results are really relevant will help connect shoppers with the products they’re more likely to buy.
As you can see, there are many ways to ensure the best customer experience from your online store. There’s no greater time than seasonal holidays such as Easter to highlight to retailers the importance of getting their eggs together and making the investment in their e-commerce models.
So, to reap the benefits of improved customer satisfaction and increased sales, I have three words for you: hop to it!