Santa visits billions of household in a single night, which takes some serious navigational skill. But proper navigation is just as important with your online store as it is when yelling “On Dasher, on Dancer!” Visitors won’t stick around on your site if getting around is a hassle. Make your nav menu intuitive and logical for users. Include a search box so frenzied shoppers can quickly find the exact product they’re looking for when they arrive. Use breadcrumbs (ex. Women’s Apparel > Pants > Jeans) so that shoppers can get into categories and sub categories and then find their way back. These details can make the difference between shoppers making a purchase and leaving to go to one of your competitors’ sites.
Keeping it Simple
Santa has been running his operation the same way for hundreds, and maybe even thousands, of years. As technology has changed, he hasn’t. Santa keeps it simple. A simply designed website can provide the same success. Keep your homepage uncluttered and stick to the essentials – use a slideshow or engaging image, highlight a single value proposition, include buttons that link to key areas of the site, incorporate a bit of text for the search engines, and provide your contact information. Trying to do too much can overwhelm and turn off visitors.
Focus on Customers
Santa keeps the spirit of Christmas alive for children worldwide. Everything he and the elves do revolves around making children happy. You need to have the same die-hard fanaticism for your customers! Ensure that everything on your website and in your web operations is geared toward providing a great experience for your customers. This is how you get repeat business and create loyal customers.
Santa gives the nice kids presents and the naughty kids coal because he wants to teach them a lesson in fairness. Your shipping policies, return policies, cancellation policies, and all other customer-focused policies should be just as fair. Create an FAQ to provide all of these policies to inquisitive shoppers so that they can get their questions answered without having to contact your company. Consumers are more likely to shop at stores that have well-articulated information available to answer their most common questions because it illustrates trustworthiness. It also creates a better overall customer experience because customers know what they’re getting themselves into when they make a purchase.
Santa’s elves make all the toys in their workshop, which means that they can implement a strict quality control process on their in-house operations. As an online retailer, you need to stand behind your products as well. Providing high-quality products is essential, as is being willing to support your products if there’s an issue of any kind. Use verbiage on your site to convince shoppers that you care about what you’re selling and that they’ll be satisfied with their purchases. Simply put, believing in your products is key to getting consumers to buy them. On product pages, include customer reviews, guarantees, and anything else that speaks to the quality of each item.
Genuine Passion for your Work
Santa is the famed figure that he is because he loves everything about Christmas! He’s not just any guy in a red hat that decided to run the North Pole because no one else would. Having a true passion for what you do will come through in everything that you do. Passion is inspiring and engaging and can’t be faked. So if everyone at your company you really loves what they do, that will provide a competitive advantage over other companies that are just in it for the money. This is why it’s important to train staff properly and encourage everyone at your company to contribute content to your site that will be beneficial to shoppers.
Kate Pierce is the owner of LionShark Digital Marketing LLC, a West Michigan internet marketing company. Her areas of expertise include Paid Search, Search Engine Optimization, Social Media, Web Consulting for small businesses, Copywriting and Local Online Marketing. She lives in the Grand Rapids area with her husband and enjoys cooking, watching sports and spending time outdoors. Like a true digital marketing expert (i.e. geek), she loves talking about marketing theory and SEM trends… so don’t say you weren’t warned!