How To Crush Your Digital Strategy This Valentine’s Day

3d render of shiny red color balloons with empty wall in empty room. Valentine's day,  Party concept.

Love is in the air! In this opinion piece, WP Engine country manager ANZ Mark Randall shares his tips for getting the most out of Valentine’s Day this year.

Last year, consumers spent an average of only $43.61 on gifts for their other half. More couples are abandoning expensive dinners for nights in, take-out and Netflix. Finder research suggests that almost two-thirds of Australians in a relationship had no plans to celebrate Valentine’s Day in 2019. A quarter of these dumped the holiday altogether due to how expensive it is, while 18 per cent simply don’t believe in it. 

Despite its decreasing popularity, and the rise of Alibaba’s Singles Day, Valentine’s Day is still one of the busiest shopping periods in the retail calendar and one that retailers should plan to capitalise on. For Valentine’s Day 2020, it’s time to ditch old-school marketing methods and start a new love affair with easy, smart and targeted techniques that will make shoppers fall in love.

These easy to follow tips will help you improve your website strategy and boost sales on the most romantic day of the year. 

Does your site have a romantic look and feel?
Consider giving your site a Valentine’s Day makeover in the lead up to the holiday. Shoppers who had not considered spending for a loved one are then immediately prompted to do so when navigating your site. If you have a WordPress website, you have the freedom to customise your site and change the look and feel both easily and temporarily. Regardless of product type, you can always give your goods a bit of love by incorporating Valentine’s themed banners, colors, fonts, backgrounds and graphics to your website decor. 

Have you incorporated any Valentine’s promotions?
Many Aussie couples have abandoned Valentine’s Day due to the cost, so a deal or sale is a great way to entice shoppers who might not have initially planned to spend on your site . This could be a certain percentage off flowers and gifts, free shipping, free cards or even Valentine’s Day wrapping on the house. You can really bring this home by adding on-site prompts like pop-ups and banner messages which will help conversion rates during the Valentine’s Day shopping period.

Can your site handle the Valentine’s Day pressure?
In the lead up to Valentine’s Day, many independent ecommerce retailers will see a surge in online traffic. An increase in website traffic can slow and in some cases completely crash your website. Recent industry benchmarks from Google tell us that 53 per cent of users will leave if a site takes too long to load, resulting in potential consumers spending their budget elsewhere. Considering the competitive nature of Valentine’s Day this year, it is important that businesses plan for increased traffic and ensure their site doesn’t crack under the holiday pressure. 

Is your site a good match for mobile devices?
While 63 per cent of ecommerce revenue comes from desktop purchases, many couples are still opting to buy gifts for their beloved on the go. To increase the likelihood of a purchase made through a smartphone, it is important to ensure that the design of your site is mobile-friendly. Building an ecommerce site using pre-existing themes on WordPress like Genesis and the WooCommerce plugin can cut down on these design costs, enabling you to create ecommerce sites optimized for both desktop and mobile, even on the tightest of budgets.

Does your checkout process leave shoppers feeling the love?
The check-out process is an integral part of the online shopping experience. Retailers risk losing the interest of Valentine’s Day shoppers if the payment process takes too long or shipping it too expensive. To streamline the checkout process, retailers can offer consumers the option to use guest checkout rather than forcing them to sign in or create an account. FInding ways to shorten the check out process without something like WooCommerce reduces the hassle, saves time, and ultimately makes it easier for the customer to purchase their Valentine’s Day gifts on your site.

Though there has been some resistance from Aussie couples to celebrate Valentine’s Day, there is still a huge opportunity for retailers to capitalise on the holiday, if they’re clever about it. A thought out and smart digital marketing strategy is a cost effective way to drive sales and spread the love this year. 


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