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Important E-Commerce Dates for 2020

January may have come to a close, but you don’t want that New Year energy wearing off. To keep you pushing, we’ve picked out some key retail dates to make the most of in 2020.

14th February, Valentine's Day

An easy one to remember, Valentine’s falls on the same date every year. And more than just chocolates and flowers these days, it can make early February a pretty big deal for your sales (especially if you sell anything romantic).

Make use of your homepage to highlight gift ideas. Send out an email to your existing customers. Most importantly, create a buzz—a sense of urgency.

EARLY - MID FEBRUARY, NEW YORK & LONDON FASHION WEEKS

The biannual Fashion Weeks are increasingly becoming some of the most hotly-awaited events in wider society’s calendars as the catwalk becomes democratised.

And if your brand’s within the industry, you don’t have to have your products down the catwalk to make the most of Fashion Week. Serve up some style or catwalk-look promotions of your own. Ensure your brand stands out by encouraging your customers to step out their comfort zones and join in the fun.

22ND MARCH / 10TH MAY, MOTHER'S DAY

Many brands notice a decent surge in sales around the run up to Mother’s Day, with it applying to such a big audience.

This year, UK Mother's Day will fall on 22nd March, with US’ a few months later on 10th May. Sell to both markets? Even better.

Make sure you’re set to capitalize on this and promote your deals as much as you can:

  • Email marketing. Email marketing. More email marketing!

  • Utilize your social media accounts to make sure you're reaching the widest possible audience.

  • Give your followers a good reason to promote your content with retweets/shares, such as exclusive deals for Mother's Day gifts.

10TH APRIL - 12TH APRIL, EASTER WEEKEND

Spread the Easter spirit with some sweet savings, especially if you offer kids’ gifts or chocolate!

Get creative with your design (now’s your chance to stretch your brand guidelines!) with seasonal themes and tasty pastel palettes.

Spark some Easter fun through seasonal games like Easter egg hunts that keep customers clinged to your site. They’re actually pretty simple. A quick trick is to ‘hide’ photos of eggs on some of the deeper pages of your site. Offer a discount, gift, or promo code for winners and make sure you’re shouting about this. Hint: slip in a branded hashtag and you might even get some meaty UGC back on social.

MAY - JULY, WEDDING SEASON

The stats say searches for ‘wedding presents’ skyrocket around June, as many guests turn to online shopping to help them find the perfect present.

While wedding gifts are predicted to be in-demand again this year, we’re also seeing an increase in searches for all things wedding-related. Think lingerie, dresses, engagement rings, usher ensembles. It seems more and more customers are enjoying the benefits of online wedding shopping over more traditional in-store services.

21ST JUNE, FATHER'S DAY

Father's Day falls on June 21st this year. And like Mother’s Day, for many, there’s a strong chance of increased traffic. Take the time to do some targeted marketing. Here’s a few promo ideas:

  • Discount codes: use social media to push these out to customers around the beginning of June. Select the products you want to promote for the holiday.

  • Free gift wrapping: this should help entice those stripped for time (and those without a knack!) for DIY wrapping.

  • Make your ‘order by’ date clear: don't just bang it on your homepage and landing pages. Make sure it’s up there on your product pages, too.

JUNE - SEPTEMBER, FESTIVAL SEASON

The summer festival season’s a popular and often busy time of year for many music lovers (and those who love to party!). Late spring, many will be stocking up on their camping equipment, festival wardrobe and wellingtons boots (thanks to unpredictable British weather).

If you’re a fashion e-commerce merchant, why not invest in some festival lookbook style content? Or, if your inventory is stacked with camping equipment and waterproofs, try putting together a festival bundle for a discounted price to shift some of it.

EARLY SEPTEMBER, BACK TO SCHOOL

Back to school is an important time of the year for many retail businesses. Why not spend the time before the new school year reminding students and their parents what they need in preparation for a successful first day back. Competition is high during this period, so discount codes and free shipping are some nice quick wins.

31ST OCTOBER, HALLOWEEN

October’s arrival signifies cooler weather, leaves falling from the trees, and, of course, Halloween. Even if your business doesn’t have a direct link to the date, it could be worth adding some Halloween-themed offers to your shop to get involved. If all else fails, encourage your team to dress up and load up your social media with some snaps. Bonus points for getting some nice employer brand content out there!

27TH - 30TH NOVEMBER, BLACK FRIDAY CYBER MONDAY

Black Friday Cyber Monday (BFCM) was originally an American shopping holiday, though as e-commerce has grown, it’s become an international event. The biggest weekend in the e-commerce calendar, in fact.

Sparking the Christmas shopping season, BFCM is a good benchmark for you to ensure that your website’s fully prepped for Xmas shoppers.

Here’s a few thoughts on how you can boost your traffic and conversions this BFCM:

  • Black Friday-related blog content: if you run a blog alongside your e-commerce business, you should begin to write posts at least 2-3 weeks before Black Friday. Aim for about one a week; you don't want to overwhelm your readers with information about it, but you also don't want them to forget the date. Find a balance that works for you.

  • Send out topical emails a few weeks before: Amazon’s a good example for this. Year on year, we see them hit back with effective email marketing. If you've shopped from Amazon in the past, you’ll have likely received emails from them with their various Black Friday promotions. Try these techniques yourself.

  • Have a Black Friday homepage: it’s likely you’ll be switching up your offers around BFCM. Keep customers informed so they can see which they’ll be making use of.

  • Put up a countdown: tell visitors how long until the sales start to create urgency and anticipation that pulls them back.

14TH DECEMBER, FREE SHIPPING DAY

It seems leaving Christmas shopping until the last minute has become part of the festive tradition. Gone are the days where people had sorted all the gifts before they’d even flipped their calendar to December. Chances are, your customers will still be shopping for their gifts 10 days before the big day.

A few years ago, entrepreneur Luke Knowles and his wife noticed the shift towards this trend and launched Free Shipping Day. The idea behind it was that an annual free shipping day in December would give brands’ customers confidence that their purchases would arrive in time for the big day. And has it worked in driving sales? Absolutely. Don’t miss out!

25TH DECEMBER, CHRISTMAS DAY

25th December. The most wonderful time of the year (and one of the best times for marketers to increase business revenue—you included!).

This year, be sure to maximize your sales with compelling PPC campaigns. Combine Christmas themed ads with strong CTAs that will really draw your customers in. And be sure to get it all going at least 6 weeks before the 25th December. We all know how stressful Christmas-left-late can be!

26TH DECEMBER, BOXING DAY SALES

Whilst we’re seeing the Christmas sales creep into pre-Christmas more and more, Boxing Day remains a big deal. Especially for those who received vouchers on Christmas Day and are keen to get out and spend them!

The sales are a good opportunity to update your graphics and offer new products and lines for extra revenue ahead of the January slump.

BY Eve Rouse

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