Retailers, it's that time of the year again! It's time to start ramping up your digital efforts and iron out your e-commerce strategies for the 2016 holiday shopping craze.
The online sales are expected to maintain the growth trend from last year, thanks to more and more consumers making their purchases online.
Over the next weeks, we will compile a guide packed with tips and tricks to help you navigate this year's holiday shopping season.
Who doesn't love a good deal?
Products that are ''on sale'' exert a magical power over everyone and applying a tag with 30% less on an item can give customers that feeling that they are about to score a great deal.
As a result, they will feel more enticed to click your product ad and hit the Add to Cart button.
For example, let's look at the product ads below. Which ones do you think are going to get the most clicks? Most probably the first one that contains a special offer and the last one that clearly states that there has been a 22% price drop.
If you want to add the discounted price to your product ads you need to enrich your Google feed and add some optional fields to it. In Google Shopping for example, the attributes needed are Sale Price and Sale Price Effective Date.
The Sale Price is the discounted price of an item. Make sure that you have the regular Price attribute in the feed. It is required that the regular price is displayed next to the sale price on the product page.
Sale Price Effective Date attribute must include a start date and an end date using the format required by Google:
(YYYY-MM-DD)Tstart hour-timezone/(YYYY-MM-DD)Tend hour-timezone
Before you start scratching your head let me tell you that we have a quick solution for this. Let's say you are using BigCommerce shopping cart and you want to run a sale for some products between 10:00 and 16:00 of UTC-8 Time Zone.
Because modifying the dates in the feed for all items would be a total nightmare you can create a rule that applies to all products on sale. A rule like this is going to take a couple of minutes and this is how it would look in DataFeedWatch.
You can create these discounts for certain types of products or categories, for a limited amount of time, to test their effectiveness and see if they bring the estimated increase in revenue.
Promotions: Free Shipping
Free shipping has a huge impact on online retail sales, being the number one reason for shopping cart abandonment. Free shipping is what sometimes makes the difference between buying that product in store or buying it online.
With shipping playing such an important role in the buying decision, if you do offer it, it would be a rookie mistake not to make it obvious in your product ads.
In the example below two merchants offer the same product at a very similar price. The only difference is that one has clearly stated he's offering free shipping and the other has not. Most probably the first ad is going to get more clicks.
So, if you do offer free shipping for some products you NEED to shout it out loud in your product ads. There are several ways for you to add this to your feed so let's look at the options available.
Adjust shipping price in your normal feed
Set the shipping price to 0 for the items that should have free shipping. Google will recognize that as free shipping and will add the tag to the ad.
Create a Google Promotions Feed
Create an additional Google Merchant Promotions feed and add a coupon code.
The new data feed needs to have the following required fields: Promotion ID, Product Applicability, Offer Type, Long Title, Promotion Effective Dates, Redemption Channel.
If you want to know more on how to easily create a promotions feed in DataFeedWatch click here: Google Shopping Promotions Feed.
You can use other types of promotions, such as discounts and free gifts to entice customers to click your ads. You can review all types of promotions available in this Merchant Promotions Quick Guide.
Have you been using Google Shopping promotions for your business? If you answered with a ''YES'' please share your top tips in the comments section below.