10 Ways to Get Your Website Ready for Cyber Monday

Cyber Monday is coming up soon, but there’s still plenty of time to get your site in order and rack up some big sales. And remember, if you’re an Infomedia client, we’ll help you with all of these — just give us a call.

People waiting to go up flight of stairs in a crowded building

Cyber Monday, the huge Internet-wide sale that happens the Monday after Black Friday (i.e. the Monday after Thanksgiving) every year, just keeps getting bigger and bigger. Each year, posted sales blow the previous year’s sales out of the water, and although big retailers are a huge part of the action, a lot of our clients have seen really great results with Cyber Monday sales, too.

Cyber Monday is coming up soon, but there’s still plenty of time to get your site in order and rack up some big sales. And remember, if you’re an Infomedia client, we’ll help you with all of these — just give us a call.

If you’re a small business, you can still make a killing on Cyber Monday if you have ecommerce business on your website, but pulling off a successful and profitable sale does take a little planning. Each year, we work with clients who wait until the last minute to get their sites ready for Cyber Monday and, although you technically CAN do that, I doubt fiddling with coupon codes is really how you want to spend your Thanksgiving weekend (and I know it’s not how I want to spend mine).

Without further ado, here are my 10 best ideas to consider for setting your Cyber Monday up for success:

1. Set up Discounts

There are lots of ways to add discounts to your website for Cyber Monday; you can choose to stack discounts (allow customers to add discounts together for bigger savings) or not to stack. You can offer a store-wide discount, or just discount certain categories. It is really up to you.

2. Set up Coupon Codes

Adding a coupon code is a pretty simple way to add discounts to your site, and if you use different coupon codes in different promotions, you can track which promotions resulted in sales and use the information about which promotions were successful in future campaigns. Send information about coupon codes via social media or emails, or add the coupon code to a banner on your home page or advertise it site-wide on every page of your website.

3. Allow Free Shipping for Cyber Monday

Customers tend to love free shipping, and there are several ways to handle it depending on how you’d like to fulfill orders: You can simply turn off shipping charges for all orders from the site for the entire day, or you can require a coupon code at checkout that creates a free shipping option, or you can offer free shipping to customers who meet a minimum purchase amount — free shipping for orders over $50, for example.

4. Update Your Site’s Shipping and Returns Policies

Be sure your site’s policies on shipping and returns are clear, up-to-date and unambiguous. You hope to reach new customers on Cyber Monday, and you don’t want to alienate them with unclear policies. It might also be a good idea to publicize your site’s last shipping day for guaranteed Christmas delivery.

5. Switch to Responsive Design

If you haven’t already updated your website to responsive design, it might be too big a project to accomplish in the short time before Cyber Monday — but responsive design is important, and it’s only getting more important, so if you haven’t switched yet, I’d recommend making it a priority for 2016. If your site isn’t responsive, it won’t load correctly on a phone or tablet, and it’s unlikely to be indexed by Google. We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: You need a responsive website. To learn more about responsive and how it works, click here.

6. Punch up Your Home Page with Holiday Cheer

Consider adding a banner announcing your Cyber Monday sale, communicating a coupon code, instructing customers about free shipping, or simply advertising some of your favorite products for the holidays. This helps new visitors to your website get oriented, and it alerts returning customers that something is different and special about your site. A banner is simple to turn off and on, so there isn’t really a downside to adding a banner during the holidays.

7. Be Sure Your Site Can Handle Increased Traffic for Cyber Monday

The last thing you want is for your site to load slowly or, worse, to not load at all when customers are trying to shop on Cyber Monday. If you’re an Infomedia client, we’ll make sure your site is secure and can handle increased traffic, so you won’t have to worry about that. Loading speeds can be a concern, though, so be sure your site is optimized for speed: If your site has sliders, limit them to three or four images, and be sure images throughout your site are optimized to the correct size for quick loading.

8. Prepare for Increased Orders and Customer Service Demands

Ideally, more people will be using your website on Cyber Monday, and while more customers means more sales (Good!), more customers can also mean more problems (Not so good!). Be sure you prepare your staff and shipping departments for increased demand that may come from your website.

9. Consider Adding an Email Capture

If you’re promoting your Cyber Monday sale to new customers (via traditional advertising, social media ads or pay-per-click advertising, for example), be sure you keep them. You probably already ask for customer emails at checkout (if you don’t, now is a good time to start), but adding an email capture elsewhere on the site may help you catch people who browse without buying on Cyber Monday.

10. Remember to Promote Your Cyber Monday Sale

The old “if you build it, they will come” adage doesn’t really apply here. If you set your site up for Cyber Monday, you’ll still need to promote your sale to get people to actually buy on Cyber Monday. Be sure to send an email to your core customers communicating the sale and including a handful of great products or offers. Use your social media accounts to continually promote your sale, and be sure to mention the sale to brick-and-mortar customers as well, if you have them.

I’m astounded by how popular Cyber Monday has become, and I don’t want our clients to miss out on this big opportunity for increased holiday sales. Hopefully this list will give you some good ideas for Cyber Monday. If you need help implementing them, we are just a phone call away!

Pamela Sanderson

About Pamela

If Infomedia is a circus (and it can be, sometimes), Pam is our ringmaster: She runs the show, keeping us on-track when we clown around, calming the roar of incoming projects and effortlessly walking the tightrope of tricky technical details. Pam handles everything from client trainings to website trouble-shooting to scheduling, and it’s clear she has a passion for what she does, for her clients, and for each and every team member here at Infomedia. When she’s not saving the world website at a time, she’s probably reading, camping with her husband, or enjoying one of her guilty pleasures (ice, Chinese food and lemon bars).

See more articles from Pamela Sanderson

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