7 Key Points for Leveraging Your E-commerce Site During Christmas

by | 14 Sep, 2023 | CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE

During Christmas, an increasing number of consumers turn to the internet for their holiday shopping. Last year, 65% of them used this channel, with a budget of €189 (compared to €201) in physical stores. The gaps are narrowing, but stores still remain the preferred destination. So, how can you make the most of the e-commerce channel for the holiday season?

Highlighting for Christmas

The internet is the preferred playground for searching for gift ideas. Today, 4 out of 5 internet users prepare for the holiday season there. Social networks, websites, blogs… there is a plethora of different content. For brands and retailers, the challenge here is to stand out and attract these internet users to their own platforms.

How to do it? There are several different types of content. Among the more conventional ones, we find lists of gift ideas in article format or videos. Brands can also invest in a gift generator, as Nature & Découvertes does, or offer a new temporary product category for the holiday season: the “Gifts” section.

The next step is to trigger purchases on your site, thanks to a smooth customer experience, interesting additional services, speed, promotions, and even offering a digital gift card…

Highlighting Reviews and Ratings

The internet is the preferred playground for searching for gift ideas. Today, 4 out of 5 internet users prepare for the holiday season there. Social networks, websites, blogs… there is a plethora of different content. For brands and retailers, the challenge here is to stand out and attract these internet users to their own platforms.

How to do it? There are several different types of content. Among the more conventional ones, we find lists of gift ideas in article format or videos. Brands can also invest in a gift generator, as Nature & Découvertes does, or offer a new temporary product category for the holiday season: the “Gifts” section.

The next step is to trigger purchases on your site, thanks to a smooth customer experience, interesting additional services, speed, promotions, and even offering a digital gift card for free.

A Smooth Shopping Experience

One of the main causes of cart abandonment is the payment phase. Hidden costs, friction, not enough payment method choices… there are many reasons. E-commerce businesses must, therefore, be vigilant and continually improve this phase to minimize losses due to cart abandonment. And during the holiday season, the stakes are higher. Logically, the number of visitors can drastically increase since 88% of French people are looking for gifts. Therefore, you must be able to manage multiple transactions in a short amount of time while reducing the risk of friction.

Additionally, the retailer must strike a balance between a quick purchase process and a longer one where last-minute product recommendations are offered. Indeed, many visitors to the website are there for the first time and solely to buy gifts for their loved ones. They may not necessarily be in the brand’s target audience. For them, presenting a quick and smooth checkout process is relevant to reduce the abandonment rate.

To do this, the brand can identify the most frequently purchased gift items (gift sets, gift cards, etc.) and create a specific customer journey.

Personalizing the Experience

Consumers have evolved and now prefer to have a personalized journey based on their preferences. At Christmas, where efficiency and hospitality are important, offering a certain level of personalization is essential. Through communication, recommendations, game operations… With limited attention, especially in the midst of the gift rush, brands must capitalize on an optimized and unique experience to stand out. The stakes are high because personalization can increase the average basket size by about 20%.

White paper e-gift card for Christmas

Adaptable Delivery

One of the reasons why consumers hesitate to buy online is delivery. Costs are too high, or delivery times are not guaranteed. Especially at Christmas, where most internet users want to be delivered before the big day. In fact, 30% of them have experienced a delivery delay, which explains why 57% prefer to make their purchases in-store from December 10th.

To maximize their revenue until the end, e-commerce businesses can implement a guaranteed pre-Christmas delivery service by working on logistics. It is also interesting to work on delivery-related services to add value and stand out: gift wrapping, personalized messages, alternate delivery addresses…

Returns and refunds should not be neglected either. They represent a barrier to online shopping for 29% of consumers, so it is essential to streamline the process as much as possible.

Launch of the Digital Gift Card

To perform well on their e-commerce site during the holiday season, brands can offer a variety of gift options. They can launch both physical and digital gift cards. The latter is becoming increasingly important in France and usually tops the wish list for Christmas. Offering your own gift card will attract more customers for the purchase and potentially for spending on the website after the holidays.

Specifically, e-gift cards can attract millennials and last-minute shoppers. The last four days before Christmas represent 50% of the revenue for digital gift cards.
To take it a step further, a brand can use it as a promotional tool to differentiate itself from competitors.

Clarity in Customer Service

When we want to give a gift to a loved one, our buying process is different. We want to be sure, which is why 75% of internet users don’t hesitate to turn to a brand’s customer service at Christmas to ask questions.

And consumers expect a quick response, otherwise they will abandon their purchases. However, the holiday season represents a peak in demand (twice as much) for customer service. It is therefore necessary to anticipate and optimize the service by offering multiple contact channels: chat, email, phone, etc.

To lighten the workload, considering that requests can sometimes be redundant, a brand can think about “self-service responses” through FAQs or even a chatbot. In fact, 72.5% of responses were found through this channel.

And when it comes to Christmas, it also means returns and after-sales service. Here too, it is important not to skimp on providing the best service to customers. For example, JouéClub offers an exchange service, and every year this results in more than 15,000 requests.

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