John Lewis have released their latest poignant TV ad, the Coca Cola truck has made its grand entrance onto our screens once more, and Starbucks’ red cups are back. This can all only mean one thing. Yes, the festive season is now officially upon us.
It’s that time of year when retailers rub their hands in anticipation, hoping for record-breaking sales figures both online and instore.
With this in mind, many retailers are choosing to offer some excellent deal to potential customers. After all, at Christmas every customer counts. What can online stores do to convince casual browsers to buy from them?
We decided to check out a range of ecommerce sites, to see whether they’re going above and beyond this Christmas.
M&S and John Lewis are both offering excellent returns policies, with products able to be returned way into January. Other companies doing this include Debenhams, River Island, and of course, there’s Schuh’s famous 365 day returns policy. Other retailers, such as Sports Direct, offer a harshly worded and difficult to understand returns policy, which may deter many shoppers.
We’ve also seen some great Christmas delivery offers, with many retailers offering brilliant deals on Next Day delivery over the cyber weekend, including M&S again, alongside a variety of other retailers. Delivery offers can often be a great incentive for customers to make a purchase, particularly from a site they’re unfamiliar with. Great delivery incentives should really be offered all year round, but over Christmas this can make all the difference.
Click and collect is also ideal for Christmas shoppers. Many customers will not want to risk missing an important delivery, and will jump at the chance to pick up an order in-store. Again, this is something that M&S and John Lewis do particularly well, as do Schuh. Click and collect is also commonly offered by many multichannel retailers as a ‘free’ option, which will appeal to many customers who want to save every penny they can in the run-up to Christmas.
In a nutshell, offering tempting delivery and returns options, and making them transparent, can spell the difference between a potential customer converting or not. Don’t make the mistake of blurring the lines of your delivery and returns policies – make them clear and offer free options if possible, after all, it’s Christmas!