How to encourage consumers to use your online store for Christmas shopping

4th December 2019|Analysis, Retail Experience, Trends|

Christmas is approaching, and consumers are starting to think about gift shopping. A new study by Bring conducted in collaboration with the market research company IPSOS shows that more and more shoppers are choosing to buy their Christmas presents in physical stores rather than online.

This trend differs significantly from purchases made during other months, when online stores are used more frequently. Therefore, there is great untapped potential in being able to optimise your online store to suit the your customers’ festive mood.

In light of this, here we provide some insight into which barriers and triggers you need to be aware of in order to be prepared for the Christmas shopping period.

Triggers and barriers for those who shop online

December is a busy month for many people. It can be stressful having to squeeze Christmas shopping into your calendar alongside the Christmas parties, Christmas concerts, mince pie baking and school events.

  • Those who choose to buy Christmas presents online typically do so in order to save time. They want to avoid going from store to store and standing in long queues for a long time.
  • Another trigger point for buying gifts online is that the customers can more easily compare prices between different retailers and therefore save money.
  • On the other hand, those who are hesitant to shop online tend to have a greater need for security. They miss being able to get help when they need it, whether in the form of inspiration from a knowledgeable sales advisor or answers to specific questions regarding a specific item.
  • They want to see and touch the items in person before making their choice.
  • They want easier exchange terms, rather than having to send packages back and forth via post.
  • Or, they simply shop in physical stores because they have left it too late and are not able to have the present delivered from a webshop before it’s time to sit down to Christmas dinner with the family.

Information promotes peace of mind

20 % of customers who regularly shop online make their purchase at a webshop that is new to them. For the Christmas period, this figure more than doubles. New customers need more information than returning customers in order to be comfortable making purchases.

Simply put, it is important to know which target group you wish to reach, and remember to use clear arguments that ease any uncertainty and instead trigger a purchase. Relevant information throughout the purchasing process gives the customer the peace of mind they need.

Customers inform themselves about your store through price comparison websites, social media, google, reviews, ratings and people they know, and their confidence is strengthened when your site features great prices, a well-stocked product range, a well-functioning payment system, fast delivery and an easy return policy.

Trigger tips for your webshop

Leading up to Christmas, the most important thing for customers is that they get the fastest delivery possible. Fast delivery and home-delivery is more important for the customer in the run up to Christmas than it is for the rest of the year. Communicate the customer value in the fact that home delivery can simplify customers’ everyday life and allow for more free time during the busy Christmas period.

Tell them the latest date they can expect their packages to arrive. This could possibly be 2 days. In doing so, you will also win over many of the customers who wait until the very last moment to buy their gifts. Therefore, be sure to keep your online store open as long as possible leading up to Christmas.

Next, make sure that your customers can easily return their items after Christmas. In reality, there are very few webshops that have a proper exchange service, so if this is something your business can manage, it represents a great opportunity to distinguish yourself from competitors in a positive way.

Explain to your customers that everything needed for your exchange service is included in their package and that they are also welcome to contact your customer service 24/7 if they need assistance. At Christmas, customers expect an extended right of return, and this selling point may in turn prompt customers to complete their purchase.

Enjoy the Christmas sales!