Competition has heated up for online businesses this holiday season. With online shopping expected to surpass in-store sales for the first time this year, retailers of all sizes are getting creative with their ecommerce selling strategies. Businesses looking to grow will need to offer convenient, affordable online options or risk losing customers to competitors.
This holiday season, retailers are taking innovative approaches to reach customers online. Here are a few effective selling strategies from national retailers this year.
Ship from Store
Target has ramped up its ecommerce offerings in recent months in an effort to compete with online marketplace Amazon. Prime customers know they can get many items in just two days, and Target wanted to offer that same convenience. This year, Target tried a concept it called, “Ship From Store,” where employees filled online orders on Thanksgiving Day before opening the doors for the shoppers waiting outside. This gave online customers the first shot at deals — a big incentive to shop online.
Walmart spent more than a year developing its holiday strategy, finally deciding to do away with big deals on Black Friday in favor of 90 days of deals. The company also brought technology into its strategy, allowing customers to shop online and pick up in stores. When customers arrive at the store, they can check in through an app on their phones and go directly to a pick-up area, where an associate will bring the order to them.
Pick Up In Store
Walmart isn’t the only retailer offering customers the convenience of picking up online orders in store. Best Buy and Home Depot both allow customers to place their orders online and have them ready when they arrive. Some Best Buy locations even provide reserved parking spaces for their online customers to add convenience. For Home Depot customers, the store gives the option of sending a text message once the order is ready for pickup.
Free shipping is no longer seen as a luxury. Since most major online retailers have free shipping offerings throughout the holiday season, this offering is necessary to remain competitive. Minimum purchase amounts are crucial. Some retailers require purchases of $100 to qualify for free shipping, while others provide free shipping on purchases of $49 or more.
This year, retailers are competing online for customer dollars. By being inventive and coming up with unique ways to get shoppers to spend, businesses can have their most profitable holiday sales season ever.
For more online selling tips, check out our Ecommerce Tips and Trends and page.