‘Tis the season to be jolly, but for that to happen, your eCommerce store needs to be ready for the holiday season. Christmas time is money time for many eCommerce businesses, so if you haven’t yet prepared your eCommerce for the hustle and bustle of the holiday festivities, now is the time. Whether it is improving your marketing, warehouse efficiency, or handling of orders, this time of the year requires store owners to stop and look at where they can improve. Thinking ahead and being prepared for the holiday season can be the difference between a business experiencing its biggest eCommerce milestone or not surviving the stress and pressure that Christmas consumer behavior brings. In this article, we will present a few tips on how to prepare your eCommerce business this Christmas and make the most of this year's festive season.
Prepare your warehouse
An increase in sales might sound great to you, but if you haven’t prepared your warehouse for the extra logistical stress, you may be in big trouble. Around this time of the year, most eCommerce businesses have increased their inventory by three or four. This increase in stock puts a lot of pressure on effective inventory management, shipments, and returns. To withstand this extra pressure, businesses should consider the following options to improve their warehouse management:
- Hiring season workers - By having more hands on deck, employees remain more productive and motivated. Seasonal workers can assist in tasks that don’t require intensive training, such as packing, labeling, and picking. The more workers you have around, the better you can process and ship orders, the happier your customers are, and the higher the chance they will return.
- Improve your returns protocol - We’ve all been there. An uncle or an aunt hands us a present, and the first thought that comes to mind is, “What are they thinking?”. Christmas is a holiday based on giving presents, so it is only natural that stores are seeing many returns come the new year. Improving your returns process not only improves the general operation of your business but adds points to customer service and satisfaction.
- Improve your warehouse organization - Having enough inventory isn’t always enough if your warehouse is a mess and lacks order. Ensure that your inventory count is accurate, that items are where they belong and that your staff is fully acquainted with the floor plan and its organization.
- ehouse for your warehouse needs - Everything your eCommerce business needs under one roof. Hiring extra employees can be exhausting for any business, making ehouse’s services a valuable investment for any eCommerce business. ehouse will provide you with flexible storage units, manage and arrange inventory, supply products, and coordinate shipment. ehouse’s facilities are located in the city center and are open 24/7, making it easy to access at any hour of the day. With ehouse’s services, your business's supply chain is made a lot more efficient, allowing you to focus on what really matters this Christmas.
Order your packaging materials with ehouse- At this time of the year, many packaging suppliers run out of materials as they are in high demand and used in high volumes. With ehouse, you have access to packaging materials at great prices and enough to last you the whole season.
Improve your shipping strategy
Shipping logistics alone can be a huge source of stress for many eCommerce businesses. The worldwide surge of orders, the global chain supply crisis, an increase in returns and exchanges, and customer expectations do not help either. So prepare yourself with a shipping strategy, and getting to know your shipping pain points are essential for surviving this holiday season.
- Get familiar with “last day to ship” - Whether you work with FedEx, DHL, UPS, or any other courier, they all have shipping deadlines for orders to be delivered by Christmas.
- Offer fast and free shipping options - Give buyers the option to pay more for a better shipping alternative or to reach a certain purchase threshold for free shopping (another incentive to buy in your store!)
- Improve your customer service strategy - Shipping hiccups are inevitable, but when they happen, you want to be prepared to address your customer’s concern. Christmas time doesn’t only put extra pressure on your shipping but also your customer service. Your ability to handle shipping delays or supply chain hiccups can ease even the angriest buyers.
Shipping services - ehouse works in alliance with various courier companies, offering a variety of shipping competitive alternatives based on your business’s needs. Not only will we find you the right courier for your shipment, but with ehouse, you are in safe and reliable hands. You will be able to sleep a lot better this Christmas knowing that the risk of delays, loss, and damage to your shipments is no longer a threat to your store.
Offers promotions, deals, and coupon codes
Christmas provides endless opportunities to maximize your sales, but unfortunately, just like you, thousands of stores worldwide have the same objective. Competition is high, so you need to stand out and capture shoppers’ attention. Here are a few ideas to entice shoppers to buy in your store:
- A “Christmas Countdown” promotion - A new discount or offer is presented every day. It not only engages your audience but encourages them to come back.
- The Wheel of Christmas - Buyers “turn the wheel” and, depending on where they land, can redeem their prize.
- Coupon codes - The classic promotion code never gets old. We all love them, and they remain one of the most successful eCommerce promotion strategies.
Invest in eCommerce fulfillment outsourcing
Whether you have left it to the last minute, don’t know where to start, or simply have too much on your plate, outsourcing your eCommerce services may be all your store needs to survive this holiday season. This is where ehouse comes into the picture.
- Storage units - Whether your warehouse is overstocked or you are looking for a local storage facility, ehouse offers flexible storage units for eCommerce stores that are looking for a storage solution. These storage units are a custom solution for inventory, paid on a monthly basis, and tailored to the seller’s needs.
- “Pick & Pack” services - If you have enough on your plate and looking to delegate some of your eCommerce responsibilities, this one is for you. Custom wrapping and packaging customer orders is another way of showing your clients that you care, especially during Christmas. No business should undervalue the importance of a nice gift wrap or attractive greeting card. Outsourcing your packaging allows you to focus on other responsibilities without ignoring the importance of festive packaging and its positive impact on your business.
A business’s ability to outsource directly influences its ability to grow and meet customer demands. The time and energy businesses put into logistics, such as packaging and delivery, is often at the expense of other essential aspects, such as marketing, inventory management and business development. ehouses quick and easy onboarding and attractive prices can make any eCommerce business’s Christmas a lot less stressful this year.
To wrap it up (literally), Christmas time presents endless challenges for eCommerce businesses. Not only are online retailers faced with the high demand of consumers, but if not dealt with productively and effectively, businesses may never see the end. So, when creating your Christmas strategy, don’t waste time, prioritize your responsibilities, delegate where possible, and don't put things off. Get in touch with ehouse today to find out how your Christmas can be done with much less stress, as we manage all your eCommerce needs under one roof.