As another way to maximize my sales this holiday season, I’ve been looking at a bunch of marketing studies from last year and the year before.
In my research, I’ve come across a number of interesting facts that I think are really helpful in terms of planning and strategizing.
Below, you’ll find the list of facts I compiled pertaining to holiday shoppers along with several other useful marketing tidbits, such as a holiday calendar, shipping deadlines, and email suggestions.
Let’s dive in…
Fact 1: Free shipping is the offer most likely to spur customers into action.
Check out the chart from Deloitte University Press below:
As you can see, free shipping trumps discounts on expedited shipping.
What does this mean for you? Well, I’d recommend adding the shipping costs into your prices and then giving “free” shipping. If you’re doing the LHS method, for example, price a mug at $19.90 ($14.95 with $4.95 shipping) and $0 shipping. People will think they’re getting a deal.
87% of people say free shipping means more to them than fast shipping.
But what constitutes “fast” shipping anyway?
Fact 2: Most people consider fast shipping to be same- or next-day delivery.
- 97% of people consider same-day deliveries to be fast shipping.
- 95% consider next-day deliveries to be fast.
- 89% consider deliveries within two days to be fast.
Anything longer than two days was not considered fast, according to Deloitte’s 2016 survey.
Don’t worry if you can’t offer the “fast” though – as mentioned, FREE is more important.
And if you’re in Holiday Jumpstart, the FBA mugs will certainly qualify as “fast”. :)
Fact 3: Cyber Monday is the top ecommerce spending day in the US.
Here’s a list of what the top 10 US ecommerce spending days were during the 2016 holiday season:
- Cyber Monday
- The day after Cyber Monday
- Black Friday
- December 9
- Green Monday
- December 5
- December 6
- December 8
- December 7
- December 13
Fact 3a: In 2015, Cyber Monday conversion rates were highest between 9 and 10 PM EST.
Fact 3b: The average Cyber Monday order value was $123.43.
Fact 3c: Females accounted for the largest share of buyers and dollars for Cyber Monday spending.
Fact 3d: Total digital sales were up to $3.1B from $2.59B.
NOTE: In addition to Cyber Monday, here’s a list of 12 more days you should mark on your calendar for holiday promotions:
Halloween – October 31
Thanksgiving – November 23
Black Friday – Friday, November 24
Small Business Saturday – November 25
Cyber Monday – November 27
Green Monday – December 11
Hanukkah – December 12-20
Free Shipping Day – December 15
Super Saturday – December 23
Christmas Eve – December 24
Christmas – December 25
Boxing Day – December 26
New Year’s Eve – December 31
Fact 4: Email marketing campaigns generate sales and help you reach new and existing customers during the holidays.
If you have an email list, here are 4 suggestions for email promotions to send this time of year:
1. Deal Of The Day
Lasting for just 24 hours, deal-of-the-day promotions are a great way to instill a sense of urgency in customers—if they don’t act quickly, they’ll miss their chance.
Here are some ideas for deal-of-the-day promotions you can run:
- BOGO (e.g. buy one, get one 50% off)
- 1-Day free shipping
- Sale on an entire product category (e.g. all mugs are 25% off)
- Spend a certain amount and receive a certain discount (e.g. spend $50 and get 20% off)
2. New Product Launch
The holidays are a great time to add new products to your inventory. So if/when do you, be sure to talk them up to your customers via dedicated email campaigns.
3. Cyber Monday Deals
As previously noted, the weekend after Thanksgiving is when the holiday shopping frenzy kicks noticeably into gear. People not only look for great deals this weekend; they expect them.
So give the people what they want and plan on emailing your customers about some fantastic offers happening on Cyber Monday.
4. Order By / Shipping Deadlines
Holiday shipping deadlines are determined by the shipper (e.g. UPS, FedEx, USPS).
So, to work out when to tell customers they need to place their orders by in order to have them arrive in time for the holidays, gauge how long it takes you to put together a typical order, then add that amount of time to your shipper’s holiday shipping deadline.
Here are the 2017 holiday shipping deadlines:
It’s also a good idea to email your customer again right before the LAST shipping deadline so the procrastinators have one final chance. ;-)
Fact 5: Most customers do the majority of their holiday shopping in December.
According to Deloitte University Press, you can separate holiday shoppers into three categories:
- Early: Pre-October – Mid-November
- Mid: Black Friday – Late November
- Late: December – January
Then, based on the chart below, you can see that this is what the breakdown looks like, by percentages, for when people typically get most of their holiday shopping done (aka when you can expect the bulk of your sales):
Fact 6: When it comes to retail policies, customers prefer cash refunds, free returns, and longer return windows.
- 82% of customers say they want free online returns.
- 61% say they want their money back, not site credits.
- And 54% say they want longer return windows.
I hope you found these holiday shopping facts to be interesting/useful! Please let me know your thoughts by leaving a comment below.