5 Mistakes Business Owners Should Avoid During the Holiday Shopping Season

cioreviewindia Team | Monday, 07 December 2020, 04:29 IST

5 Mistakes Business Owners Should Avoid During the Holiday Shopping SeasonFor many businesses, the holiday season is the one time of year where income is guaranteed to outstrip expenses. Whether they sell primarily online or in a physical brick and mortar store, small business owners need to take the opportunity to capitalize on the occasion.

Unfortunately, some entrepreneurs fall victim to financial scams during this period. Others make critical errors that reduce the impact their holiday marketing campaigns have on potential consumers.

Take a few moments to see if you're guilty of any of these mistakes and see if you can't find ways to patch up your business before the shopping season is over.

1. Relying on Outdated eCommerce Tools

Potential consumers aren't going to wait around if they want to make purchases this holiday season. If they have any problem checking out online, then they're going to find some other place to do business. Investing in reliable web hosting services is very important during this time, because you don't want your site to go down when loads start to get heavier. Any customers that you lose as a result of a service disruption might never return.

Chances are that most businesses actually receive higher traffic loads during this time than any other, which increases the chances of this sort of breakdown happening. You'll also want to take a few moments to update your shopping cart software and fix any broken links on your site. While it probably seems like a ton of work at an already busy time of year, it's vital that you don't risk losing anyone due to an avoidable technical issue.

2. Not Optimizing Your Sites for Mobile Devices

Don't forget that a number of your customers will probably be using mobile devices when they buy things online. If your site isn't up to the challenge, then these customers may start to look elsewhere. While you don't need to invest in a dedicated app or anything that extreme, you do want to make sure that it's easy enough for mobile shoppers to make purchases from your brand.

Mobile-friendly eCommerce technologies are easier to incorporate into web design than ever before. That's good news because one study claims that around 30 percent of all holiday purchases last year were made on mobile devices. There's no way that you want to risk cutting your potential earnings down by a third, so make sure that your site is friendly to mobile devices and automatically reflows text and graphical elements whenever someone rotates their screen.

3. Forgetting to Offer Real Bargains

At one point, people would have flocked to almost any kind of sale simply because they were being offered a certain percentage off a product or service they were going to buy anyway. Times have changed, however, and many shoppers are much more savvy than they used to be. If you're not offering real value to your consumers, then they might go elsewhere. While you don't have to provide them with extremely deep discounts, you will want to give them something that's worth their while at least.

Those who manage physical stores will want to place their most enticing items in strategic locations.

4. Keeping the Same Store Layout You Use All the Time

Any number of stores decorate during the holiday season, but you'll also want to move some things around. Make sure that any products that should bring people in are faced the right way and visible to consumers. You may want to put some of these toward the front of your store to encourage people to come inside. Others should be placed near the back, since it encourages potential shoppers to walk past a variety of merchandise before they reach a decision.

Experts often advise proverbially putting yourself in your customer's shoes, which helps to ensure that you'll know the best way to lay your store out before the big rush starts to come in.

5. Trying to Compete with Larger Retailers

It's impossible for small business owners to compete with big box stores in terms of scale. However, you could potentially market your company as an alternative brand. Consumers who are dissatisfied with their experience at other stores might very well flock to yours merely because it isn't what they're used to. While this works best for companies that have actively marketed themselves this way for a long time, it's never too late to start. That's especially true for any firm that sells organic or natural products.

Though this could be the busiest time of the year, taking a little time out now to fix these problems can help you to make the most of it.

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