Want to see more Cyber Monday sales? Try these 11 tips.

Nov 01 2019 | PayPal editorial staff

In 2018, digital spending on Cyber Monday surpassed Black Friday by $1.2 billion, making Cyber Monday the biggest shopping day of the year.1 But was your business ready?
According to Comscore, Cyber Monday sales in 2018 rose to $6 billion – an increase of 28% over the previous year.2 If you haven’t added Cyber Monday to this year’s Black Friday planning, you could be leaving money on the table. Here are a few tips to help you make sure your business is ready for this year’s holiday traffic.

How to prepare for Cyber Monday.
Planning ahead is the key to a profitable holiday season. Consider these important tips to ensure your business is ready for holiday sales.
  • Test your infrastructure: Make sure your site is SEO-friendly from a technical standpoint. Do a round of load testing to ensure servers can handle increases in traffic and transactions. Remember, page load time impacts not only the current visit, but future visits as well—not to mention search rankings. If you’re not sure how quickly your page loads, try a Page Speed Test Tool. You should also check to make sure your shopping cart is working properly.
  • Clean up your website: Survey your website to see if there are broken images or hyperlinks. Would you shop for your holiday meal in a dirty supermarket?
  • Prepare for mobile shoppers: Many consumers use their cell phones and tablets to browse and shop, so consider your mobile strategy carefully. If it’s too late to develop a mobile version of your website, at the very least, make sure your website is optimized for viewing on mobile devices. Even small things, like putting your phone number at the top of your homepage so that shoppers can easily click to call, can be very effective at driving mobile sales. 
  • Have an emergency plan: Make sure you have the phone numbers of your hosting and shopping cart providers, development team, and credit card processor on-hand. Just in case.
  • Don’t mess with success: Don’t push your luck messing around with your website the day before Cyber Monday. Unless something is broken, put a “code freeze” in place a few weeks before Thanksgiving.

Tee up your marketing efforts.
Preparing for holiday sales is about more than server capacity and navigational flow. You may see more traffic come through your website during these months than you do the rest of the year, so make sure your holiday marketing efforts are strategic.
  • Do your homework: Review your sales from last year. What were the big sellers? Which search keywords popped? What were your top items and categories? Don’t know? Well, make it a top priority to capture those metrics this year.
  • Optimize for search (SEO): Update your keywords for better search engine optimization, adding any product or category keywords you know will be hot sellers this year. If you’ve got the data to support it, consider putting some of your marketing dollars toward paid search campaigns.
  • Create “quick navigation” paths: Make sure that your website is easy to navigate, so that customers can find the products they want in a few clicks. You may also want to include shortcuts (“quick links”) on your homepage that take shoppers directly to seasonal best-sellers.
  • Build up email lists: Take advantage of the increased traffic to your site by building your email lists. Make it easy and beneficial for visitors to provide email addresses by offering an incentive. Follow up with strategic emails, thanking them for visiting and letting them know about products, services, or offers they may have missed.
  • Consider retargeting/remarketing: As your probably know, not all shoppers make a purchase during their first visit to your site. A new visitor may be comparison shopping, so one way to keep your brand top-of-mind is with a retargeting banner ad campaign. Retargeting, a cookie-based technology, lets you “follow” visitors after they’ve left your website, placing your banner ads on other sites they visit. It’s effective because it focuses your ad dollars on shoppers who are already aware of your brand.
  • Build buzz with social media. Don't forget to build holiday promotions into your social media campaigns. Launch a holiday promotion on your Facebook page and Twitter account, offering special discounts for people who follow your social media pages. You’ll be rewarding good behavior and increasing the likelihood that they’ll refer your business to their family and friends, bringing more first-time visitors to your website.
 
Get a jump on next year.
You may not have time to check off all these items for this holiday sales season, but there’s no reason you can’t get your website in shape for next year. Remember, you don’t have to do everything on this list to help boost sales - accomplishing just one or two of these marketing initiatives can give your business an advantage this Cyber Monday.
 
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The content of this article is provided for informational purposes only. You should always obtain independent business, tax, financial, and legal advice before making any business decision.
  
1Comscore e-Commerce and m-Commerce Measurement, 2018

2Comscore multiplatform, Comscore e-Commerce and m-Commerce, 2018
3eMarketer, February 2019
4 Subject to eligibility and credit approval. The Lender for PayPal Business Loan and PayPal Working Capital is WebBank, Member FDIC 
 
 
 

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