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Are you prepared for the holidays? The happiest – and busiest – time of the year is fast approaching, and businesses that want to survive the season need to start their preparations now. Wpromote has a white paper that will help you do just that if you might want to check it out. In the meantime, this blog post will dive into the most critical need-to-know information your business should have in hand if you want to succeed in Q4.

With the holidays fast approaching, here are the areas you need to focus on to not just survive, but succeed in Q4 2017.

Focus On Mobile Commerce

Mcommerce is one of the most rapidly growing areas of all Ecommerce. According to eMarketer, mcommerce sales will rise by roughly 38% this year over last year, and sales specifically via smartphone will increase a whopping 58%. More and more consumers are embracing holiday shopping via their phones and tablets, making Black Friday as big a digital day as the traditional Cyber Monday. While the majority of Ecommerce conversions still happen on desktop, mobile commerce is catching up in both visits and sales so swiftly that online retailers saw their digital Black Friday sales become nearly equivalent to their Cyber Monday sales in 2016.

The takeaway? Ensure your site is mobile-optimized and that your checkout process is as easy and painless on mobile as it is on desktop. Make your mobile site – or app, or both! – appealing and engaging to browse, with simple navigation and categories dedicated to the shoppers you most want to capture and convert. Consider having a holiday-specific landing page with your most popular products listed for easy gift buying. Above all, make sure your mobile shoppers feel welcome.

Be Ready Early

If you’re launching your Black Friday campaigns a week before Thanksgiving, you’re already too late. We’re halfway through September, still in Q3, and news outlets are already offering Black Friday/Cyber Monday predictions to entice and intrigue prospective customers. Ecommerce and total retail sales are expected to rise even as foot traffic and in-store visits fall. The buyer’s journey remains complex, and ensuring your business is ready to encourage customers to convert at all points in the sales funnel is key.

If you plan to score big on Black Friday, start ramping up your campaigns now.

Lead gen campaigns will help your business gather emails, creating an audience for upcoming holiday deals and gift suggestions. Start on-site and off-site SEO efforts now in order to generate lead volume and organic traffic leading into October. Consider running paid search and social media ads several weeks in advance of Black Friday. Keeping your brand top of mind with gift-conscious consumers will boost your sales.

Personalize, Personalize, Personalize

Audiences no longer tolerate broad-spectrum marketing efforts that are clearly targeted to interest the largest possible number of consumers. These days, savvy shoppers look to digital to find what they want when they want it, and your brand needs to be ready to provide that bespoke, personalized experience they’re looking for. There are plenty of ways to customize the experience your customers have with your brand, so it’s a matter of knowing your audience and leveraging the channels they’ll be most likely to use – or be inspired by – this holiday season.

Develop buyer personas for those customers you most want to reach, and personalize your messaging and creative to them. Consider social retargeting ads for customers who have visited your site but have not made a purchase, or emails with content customized for their demographics, past purchase history, or location. If you have physical locations, set up ads to trigger when a user is within a certain radius of your store to boost foot traffic. And as described above, don’t forget to tailor your website to the needs of your holiday shoppers both desktop and mobile!

Want even more tips on how to make your holiday season the best ever and survive the oncoming Black Friday storm? Download our 2017 Holiday Digital Marketing Guide for absolutely everything you need to know to succeed during the most wonderful time of the year!

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