5 Ways to Prepare Your eCommerce Business for Q4
By Kelly Aitkin • Last updated: Wednesday Aug 16th, 2023
It’s that time again.
The busiest quarter of any eCommerce retailer’s calendar is upon us, giving us the chance to look back at all the changes in the last year and create a robust Q4 plan.
Studies show that 57% of retailers see an increase in sales this quarter every year, meaning there is a real opportunity to drive sales during this period. 1
With this in mind, we take a look at the best ways to prepare your marketing plan and eCommerce strategy for Q4 to ensure you’re making the most of the increased traffic this golden quarter.
How to prepare for Q4
1. Plan your marketing calendar
With key dates like Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Boxing Day, Singles Day and Christmas, you’ll need a well-thought-out marketing calendar to help you make the most of these opportunities.
Organising your calendar will allow you to benefit from the surge in website traffic on these key dates.
There’s no denying these calendar dates are a huge opportunity for retailers of all sizes, even if you’re a small business you can get one step ahead with your planning to help you identify new target audiences and gain sales.
This may mean creating relevant campaigns, curating promotional landing pages and setting up targeted social media ads, taking steps to help you identify new potential customers and gain valuable sales in busy Q4 dates.
Things to consider: It’s important to address the incentives you provide in order to separate your brand from competitors who may be offering similar discounts. Consider offering a free shipping day, creating product bundles or offering free gifts alongside your Q4 promotions to set your offering apart from the rest.
2. Use data to look out for trends
Looking back on historical data and reviewing which campaigns were successful in the past will help to inform your Q4 marketing strategy.
Using real-time data to inform your holiday campaigns will allow you to identify and react to changing trends.
By tracking, analysing and applying data to your strategy, you can see what’s working and what’s not quite right, making adjustments where appropriate.
To fully realise a reactive data-driven strategy, you’ll need dynamic elements on your site that respond to real-time trends and user behaviours.
AI features on your site can transform your data insights into personalised content. Recommendations utilise user behaviour and market trends to promote the most relevant products to the user whilst they’re on-site.
Pro tip: You can also compare your business against competitors using real-time data from Salesfire’s eCommerce tracking platform, Trends, allowing you to make the most of key trends in your industry.
Suggested reading: Read our article ‘Data Analytics is the Key to eCommerce Success–Here’s Why’ to learn more about the importance of data-driven marketing strategies.
3. Optimise your site search
Increased online traffic means an abundance of users heading to your site to search for the best deals.
And research suggests that 69% of users head straight to the search bar when they visit an online retailer. 2
This influx means that the speed and accuracy of your on-site search are key to optimising your conversion rate over this period.
Slow load times, inaccurate results and hard-to-find search bars all prevent customers from finding their perfect gifts.
Salesfire’s Search is an AI-driven solution that delivers relevant search results in the blink of an eye and optimises the product discovery process for maximum efficiency.
This will work to boost your sales, improve engagement rates and promote customer loyalty.
Suggested reading: Read our article to learn more about the importance of your eCommerce Search and the benefits of optimising your functionality.
4. Maximise the opportunity to upsell
eCommerce sites expect to see an influx of online shoppers in Q4 and with shoppers keen to make their Christmas gift purchases quickly, it’s a key time to make the most of upselling opportunities.
Using AI and machine learning you can base product recommendations on a customer’s on-site behaviour or previous purchaser’s browser history, suggesting genuinely personalised products they may not have previously thought of.
Offering Recommendations on product pages and optimal parts of the customer journey, you can create a perfectly timed cross-sell upsell to entice shoppers to add more to their baskets, effortlessly increasing AOV.
Suggested reading: Read our article The Importance of AOV for eCommerce Businesses | Tips to Boost Your Average Order Value.
5. Revisit your basket abandonment emails
The busiest shopping season of the year presents the perfect opportunity to review and update your email campaigns.
With nearly seven out of ten shopping carts being abandoned, improving your basket abandonment email sequence can recover crucial revenue from abandoned sales. 3
After all, one in five recipients of an abandoned cart email will click through, and 11% of them will purchase something as a result of the email. 4
Optimising your abandoned cart email sends is crucial for your Q4 strategy. You can test subject lines, content and the timing of your emails to identify opportunities to significantly increase your sales recovery.
Revising your basket abandonment email sequence in line with the festive season will ensure your communications are timely and relevant to achieve the greatest impact.
Suggested reading: Read our article to find out ‘How to Get the Most Out of Your Basket Abandonment Emails’
Get set for Q4 with Salesfire
With the holiday season excitement beginning earlier each year, retailers need to plan ahead to make the most of the busy period to ensure the increased traffic through their site has the best chance of converting.
By preparing your marketing calendar, creating targeted campaigns and offering excellent customer service you can make the most of holiday traffic and excel in Q4.
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