Strategies to scale online sales during Festive season:

Festive season and eCommerce challenges:

Festive season no doubt increases sales of an e-commerce business. It is the time when online sales boost up and during this season online business get more revenue than any other time of the year. The festive season comes with a baggage of challenges. For eg: A brand experiences high traffic on their site, because of better discounts on other marketplace. Like Amazon and Flipkart launching their big billion days to capture the entire market. The major challenge faced it that the cost per impression (CPM) increases due to high traffic and demand during the festive time.

Marketing Funnel:

       

A typical funnel is based on awareness > consideration > conversion > conversions > loyalty. Re-thinking this traditional funnel at two stages can help increase conversions. The first being awareness. For an online brand the audience is huge and worrying about running traffic campaigns will not help. Instead our focus needs to be on getting relevant audience to website- these are the people who are actually going to purchase our product. The second change in the funnel is conversion. Convert the audience not by selling the cheapest product, because that’s not a profitable conversion. Instead get them to buy high value products.

Strategies:

Here are 10 strategies which Shopify merchants have to keep in mind during the festive season. The first four strategies talk about how to get a relevant audience. The next three talk about how to engage them. And the last three talk about how to get high value orders.

1. Attract people who are looking for similar products during festivals.

                                                                       

By using the Google smart shopping campaign high relevant audiences can be brought to the website. For eg: In the above picture the user is searching for a pink dress. And then below that you see images of a pink dress from the brand called ‘Bunaai’. The user may or may not know about the brand, but by mentioning special attributes the user can click on this image and directly land on the product page. Google smart shopping campaign, also helps you get superior results on your remarketing campaigns across Facebook and Instagram.

2. Catalogue linked ads of festive collection to showcase a range of products.

                             

Relevant traffic can be brought in by using a catalogue sales campaign. In this Facebook allows you to link your entire catalogue and show ads of different products in your catalogue to your prospect audience. Shri & Sam used this campaign and attached strikethrough prices and festive specific overlays to grab attention of people. If your product goes out of stock and you send that information to Facebook, all those products will be removed from your ad. The benefit of this campaign is that the update happens in real time.

3.Broad audience with cost caps to increase reach and maintain efficiency.

                                                               

Scaling up campaigns during the festive season has two challenges. One, if the target audience is not big enough we start seeing higher frequencies with the reach being the same. Scaling up requires a broader audience. If you are running a lookalike for only our customers then try to run lookalikes for add to cart audience. The second is the cost caps. Cost cap allows you to make Facebook not bid very high for certain impressions. The brand ‘Suta’ by applying cost caps was able to get around 11X returns

4. Rich creative assets to generate high volume of relevant traffic.

                           

Using rich creative formats is a very important step while driving relevant audience. When people view the same creative again and again the click rate goes down. Facebook then starts penalising the advertiser, which means the cost per impression is also going up. Updation of creative is also important, use catchy ad text and images, different ad formats like slideshow or carousel. Eyewearlabs used very rich creative and highlighted their best product features which increased the click through rate (CTR). And gave them 5X returns on their ad spends

5. Engage people looking for your brand or products during festivals.

                                       

If your product name is not apparent from your domain name brand search campaign will allow anybody searching for your product show ads of your brand. Two brothers India shop used this brand search campaign to not lose to their competitors and maintain their sales.

6. Engage cart abandoners or people who have viewed but not purchased.

                                           

Dynamic re-marketing campaign lets you show the products that are viewed on the website by the audience, specifically based on people who added the product to the cart but did not make a purchase. This is also called ‘cart abandonment campaign’. By using this campaign ‘Fancy pants’ was able to get 17X returns on their ad spends.

7.High engagement on platforms like Instagram to get organic traction.

                                           

Advertisers fail to re-market people on Facebook and Instagram. There is an option on Facebook that allows to show ads to people who are their fans / followers on Facebook and Instagram. ‘Suta’ used this remarketing strategy and was able to get 16X ROAS.

8. More conversions by bundling products to create combos.

                                               

If the average order value of your products is Rs.500 or below, it is very difficult to get profit. Because platforms like Facebook and Instagram charge the same impression cost. The cost could be anywhere from Rs. 10 to Rs.30. So it is very important to bundle your product as it will increase profitability. Ink flap created combos of their notebooks and increased their average order value from Rs.590 to Rs.790.

9.Higher average order value by segmenting or filtering products.

                                         

Along with bundling, filtering is also important. It helps to focus on products with high average order value. Shri & Sam filtered their products and was able to increase their ROAS by 3X.

10. Cross-sell customers to encourage repeats.

                                                           

Facebook and Instagram , allows you to create a customer audience and run specific campaigns for their customers targeting the new arrival products. ‘Posh Affair’ used this campaign and was able to get a 12X returns.

The festive season is the most stressful time for an e-commerce site, with high traffic and intense competition from other merchants. It has become very important and crucial for any ecommerce business to strategically plan the flow of their website. From getting the relevant people, engaging them with the right products, so that they buy high value products repeatedly. It should all be systematic, so that the festive season proves to be profitable for the business.

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