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How To Prepare Your Website For The Holiday Season

It is no secret that a great Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Christmas can transform a company's fortunes. And considering how reliant we are on the Internet to make purchases, it shouldn't be a surprise that your website plays an essential role in capitalizing on the holiday season.  

Most of the recommendations and tips we present in this post are not difficult, and more importantly, most businesses can implement them themselves (or with little help). 

Run A Quick Audit

One of the most important things you can do before any holiday season is to run your website through an audit to make sure it does not have any critical issues. For example, are pages taking too long to load, is your website mobile compatible, are there any errors, etc. 

Additionally, technologies (e.g., website framework) and algorithms (e.g., Google search) are changing every year, so you should run an audit at least once a year to make sure your website is not left behind.

The good news is, there are some great (free) online tools, so it's never been easier to do the audit yourself. 

Related: 4 (Free) Website Audit Tools That Anyone Can Use

Revisit Your Conversion Funnel

All successful websites obsess over their conversion funnel - how they guide their prospects/leads from the "awareness" phase to the "purchase" phase. Analyzing and optimizing every step in the funnel is important because even minor improvements can have a big impact on the bottom line. 

A simple conversion funnel example: 

  • Google Ad
  • Product Landing Page
  • Add To Cart
    • Payment Details
    • Shipping Details
    • Order Review
    • Order Complete
  • Confirmation email
  • Follow-up emails
    • How-To
    • Related Product(s) Promotion
    • Satisfaction survey

Also, even small businesses with a simple conversion funnel (e.g., Blog > Service Page > Contact Us) should review and optimize their conversion funnel before the holiday season. As we mentioned above, every little improvement will have an impact on your bottom line, so optimizing your conversion funnel is well worth the effort. 

Optimize Your Call-to-Actions (CTAs)

CTAs are one of the most critical aspects of your website. Changing CTA's color, position, size, and message can have a considerable impact on the conversion percentage (e.g., % of visitors that complete your contact form). 

Also, your CTAs should be optimized and perfected before Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Christmas because November to December is not the time to conduct CTA experiments. 

A few CTA examples:

  • Download 
  • Schedule an appointment
  • Read more
  • Like
  • Sign up
  • Subscribe
  • Contact Us
  • Register
  • Add to cart

Finally, holiday-specific website illustrations (e.g., Santa Claus image), can be great, but they can also be distracting. Remember, your website's primary goal is to convert visitors into customers, and not to impress them with your holiday illustrations. 

Related: 7 Call-To-Action (CTA) Tips

Can Your Website Handle The Additional Traffic?

Simply put, if your website is taking too long to load, you will lose sales. What many businesses fail to realize is that an increase in website traffic requires more server power, hence the hosting plan you have may not be sufficient between November to December.

To address this seasonable demand, many hosting companies offer scalable hosting/cloud infrastructure. In other words, your hosting provider will automatically increase server power to deal with additional traffic.

You will have to pay a little more for this capability, but the good news is, you will only pay more when your website needs it (not all year round). So if your website attracts a lot more customers during the holiday season, you should definitely look into scalable hosting infrastructure. 

Summary

Holiday sales (Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Christmas) are growing every year, so you would be foolish not to do everything you can to capitalize on this trend. 

The website recommendations we covered will undoubtedly improve your holiday sales, but they do take time to implement. The question is, are you willing to take the first step and audit your website?

Related: How To Capitalize On The Next Cyber Monday

Holiday illustration - Cyber Monday, Black Friday, and Christmas
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Aleksandar (Sasha) Radonjic Evolving Digital Profile Picture About Evolving Digital
Hello, I am the Founder & Chief Growth Strategist at Evolving Digital, a digital marketing agency specializing in Growth Strategy, Digital Marketing, and more.