01 Dec

4 Ways To Prepare Your Website For Holiday Shopping

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 01.12.15 by John Meloche

3D rendering of a world globe on a supermarket trolley connected to a computer mouseDid your company benefit from the online shopping craze that was Cyber Monday yesterday? If not, you’ve missed out on quite the opportunity to generate more sales than normal through your website. Not to worry, though. There are still plenty of shopping days left in the holiday shopping season. And you better believe that those shopping days will continue to include customers going online to make their purchases.

So how can you ready your website in order to take advantage of Canada’s love for online shopping? As we pointed out yesterday, there are many reasons why people prefer to shop from home. It doesn’t take Cyber Monday to make online shopping a big time convenience for consumers. It’s important, therefore, to have your company website set up in such a way that it is providing that convenience.

Here are four ways to prepare your website for online holiday shopping:

1. Proofread the content. You don’t want the material on your site to be too convoluted or busy so that it distracts visitors from knowing exactly how to locate and purchase the items they are looking for. “Too much information or content that’s presented in large intimidating blocks will cause web browsers to search elsewhere,” writes Ryan May on BusinessDictionary.com, “In the same way, focus on four to six main products and make those a priority, rather than throwing everything you offer at the consumer up front.”

2. Make sure your site is easy to navigate. Not only should the content be easy to digest, but the usability of your website should be super easy. Remember, online shoppers love convenience. Your website should provide that. On Entrepreneur.com, Mike Azevedo highly recommends that you offer simple navigation, easy-to-read content, consistent design elements, quick website speed and clear access to support through your website.

3. Plug your site via social media. If there’s one surefire way to let consumers know that your company offers its products for sale through its website, it’s to put the word out through social media. Be sure to make use of your Facebook and Twitter pages, among others, all through the holiday season. Let your followers know that even though Cyber Monday is over, there are plenty of deals available on your company website.

“Businesses that use social media sites like Facebook and Twitter have invested heavily in these outlets for the promotion of their products and services, directly targeting holiday shoppers searching for deals from their favourite brands,” informs May, “You can do the same by providing package deals or other special incentives to those who routinely follow your brand, inviting people to your Cyber Monday event by tapping the networks that you’ve spent all year cultivating.”

4. Make sure your site is mobile-friendly. It’s important to remember that a lot of people do their online shopping with a small device that fits in the palms of their hands. It’s called a smartphone. You may have heard of it! Making your website mobile-friendly ensures that your company can benefit from the many Canadians who use their smartphones to both browse and shop on a daily basis.

“Consumers continuously shift between smartphones, desktops and tablets throughout the day” Azevedo reminds us, “As such, their digital storefront and shopping cart should ideally sync across all these devices. By optimizing your site for mobile, your customers can continue their shopping experience wherever they are and subsequently increase your company’s sales.”

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30 Nov

4 Reasons Why People Prefer To Shop From Home

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 30.11.15 by John Meloche

3D rendering of a shopping basket connected to a computer mouseWelcome to Cyber Monday! It’s the day that traditionally follows American Thanksgiving and the often-crazy Black Friday shopping day. With prices significantly slashed, Black Friday generally sees swarms of people lining up of outside retail stores hours before they open. Sadly, Black Friday also often entails people fighting each other to get their hands on those items with significantly reduced prices.

Cyber Monday, on the other hand, is far less insane. The online equivalent to Black Friday, Cyber Monday provides online shoppers with prices that are just as significantly reduced. It’s not that usual online shoppers would need much incentive to shop via the internet anyways. There are a lot of reasons why many people prefer to stay at home to shop rather than entering the busy malls.

Here are four:

1. It helps to avoid headaches. Let’s be honest. Who enjoys searching for parking and waiting in long line ups? Online shopping helps to avoid all of the headaches that come with traditional shopping. This, of course, is especially true during the busy holiday shopping season. There is never a more busy time in the malls than right now. With Cyber Monday today, many people will be taking the opportunity to shop from home and save money in ways they can’t the rest of the year.

2. It’s easier to compare prices. Many people prefer to browse in various stores in order to compare prices. And it makes sense. Why spend more than you have to for an item that is sold in more than one store? Shopping online, however, makes browsing so much easier. Hopping from website to website takes a lot less time and effort than visiting the physical locations of various stores.

In fact, online shopping helps people who wouldn’t normally take the time to browse to properly compare prices. “When you visit a store, you most likely have to settle for whatever price the vendor has placed on a particular item,” writes Wendy Boswell on About.com, “Not so with online shopping – you have the ability to compare prices from hundreds of different vendors.”

3. It makes shopping so much more comfortable. You can shop in your pyjamas while sipping coffee, if you choose to. The possibilities are endless when it comes to finding ways to shop in the most comfortable ways possible. You can shop while lying in bed with your laptop computer if you feel like it. Online shopping is arguably (although it would be hard to argue) the most comfortable way that a person can go shopping.

4. There’s no such thing as “operating hours”. If you can’t get to the mall before it closes because of work or other obligations, then online shopping is definitely for you. It takes away the problems that may be associated with the operating hours of any store you wish to purchase from. Online shopping can be done 24/7. As Boswell points out, “in comparison to a brick and mortar store with fixed hours, online shoppers can choose any time of the day or night to get on the Web and shop.”

Here’s hoping your business is benefitting from Cyber Monday shoppers today!

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28 Nov

4 More Reasons Consumers Love Online Shopping

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 28.11.14 by John Meloche

Online shoppingIn yesterday’s blog, we revisited the concept of online shopping and just how popular it has become in Canada. For obvious reasons, it’s very convenient. And arguably, convenience is the top reason that it has become so popular with Canadians. Obviously, in Canada, holiday shopping is an experience that includes going out in the cold. Sometimes, this involves blistery, stormy and snowy conditions.

Online shopping helps to avoid all of that. Staying at home, keeping warm and cozy and doing your shopping via the internet is a wonderful idea for a lot of people. Does your company offer its customers the ability to shop online? At Synergy Marketing, our entire promotional products catalogue can be found on our website. Admittedly, we enjoy speaking with our customers directly over the phone once they’ve decided upon the gifts they want to order.

Even if they haven’t yet decided, we love speaking to them to help them to make the best choices. The point, however, is that they are able to order their items without ever having to take a step outdoors. When you offer your customers the same benefit, you’re bound to increase your sales. At least, this is what Gilon Miller seems to believe in an article posted on UpstreamCommerce.com.

He offers a list of benefits to online shopping based on conversations he’s had with consumers. Yesterday, we analyzed four of those benefits. In today’s blog, we’ll round out the final four. Considering that it’s the holiday shopping season, online shopping is bound to take off if it hasn’t already. Today, by the way, is Black Friday. And that means Cyber Monday is next – the biggest online shopping day of the year! Here are four more benefits to online shopping.

1. Comparison of Prices. There is likely no easier way to browse than to do so online. Think about all of the time and energy it takes to go in and out of every store that you are interested in. As Miller writes, “online shops make comparison and research of products and prices possible. Online stores also give you the ability to share information and reviews with other shoppers who have firsthand experience with a product or retailer.”

2. Crowds. As mentioned yesterday, crowd avoidance is one of the most popular reasons that online shopping is so well-loved. No waiting in long lineups, no search for parking spots – online shopping makes holiday shopping a dream. “Crowds force us to do a hurried shopping most of the time,” Miller points out, “Crowds also create a problem when it comes to finding a parking place nearby where you want to shop and going back to your vehicle later loaded with shopping bags.”

3. Compulsive Shopping. “Many times when we go out shopping we end up buying things which we do not require because of the shopkeepers’ upselling skills,” Miller continues, “or we’ll compromise on our choices because of the lack of choices in those shops.” Online shopping helps for consumers to buy what they are looking for and that’s it. Saving your customers money, by the way, will be a huge plus for you this holiday season. Naturally, they’ll be looking to save money. Your allowance for online shopping will help in the process.

4. Discreet Purchases. Is shopping sometimes an embarrassing experience? Let’s be honest. When shopping for loved ones, we don’t always want to be caught in the stores they like, that we would never frequent in general. “Some things are better done in privacy,” says Miller, “Online Shops enable me to purchase undergarments and lingerie or adult toys without the embarrassment that there are several people watching me and my choices.”

Synergy Marketing believes in the online shopping trend, however, we enjoy speaking with our customers over the phone directly. That means that we allow them to shop within the comfort of their homes and places of business. Our promotional products, by the way, are perfect giveaways during this time of year. Please peruse our website to learn about all of the amazing promo products that we have to offer. Or simply call us at 1-877-748-9884!

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27 Nov

4 Reasons Consumers Prefer Shopping Online

Posted in Synergy Suggestions on 27.11.14 by John Meloche

Depositphotos_4396887_xsTomorrow is known as “Black Friday” in the retail world. And, for many holiday shoppers, it means getting up early and waiting in long lineups just to be among the first to get the chance to take advantage of some incredible deals. Is your business preparing for Black Friday? If not, there’s no cause for concern. And that’s because Cyber Monday is right around the corner! Wait. Is your business preparing for Cyber Monday?

Just to be clear, Cyber Monday is essentially the online equivalent of Black Friday. And, it should come as no surprise that online shopping is an increasingly popular trend in Canada. The truth is, online shopping is popular all throughout the world. But, in Canada, shoppers seem to be taking to the internet more than ever. There are, as you can imagine, numerous benefits to shopping online.

First of all, you get to avoid all of those long lineups in the stores and shopping malls. Many people dread the idea of Black Friday as they have no interest in wrestling with other shoppers to get their hands on sought-after items. Instead, they much prefer to do their shopping in the comfort of their own homes. After all, what sounds more convenient? Sitting in front of a computer in pyjamas, or spending upwards of fifteen minutes looking for a parking spot?

“Because of the numerous advantages and benefits, more and more people say they prefer online shopping over conventional shopping these days,” writes Gilon Miller on UpstreamCommerce.com, “It’s important to understand the psyche of the online shopper. Cater to this and you’ll have them flocking to your… er, online store.” Here are four reasons that consumers prefer shopping online.

1. Convenience. This is the obvious one, isn’t it? As Miller reiterates, “You don’t have to wait in a line or wait till the shop assistant helps you with your purchases. You can do your shopping in minutes even if you are busy, apart from saving time and avoiding crowds. Online shops give us the opportunity to shop 24/7 and also reward us with ‘no pollution’ shopping.” This reason alone should encourage you to offer this option to your customers, don’t you think?

2. Better Prices. Miller writes that many consumers point out that they’re able to secure better deals when they shop online. This is one way that you can create an incentive for more people to visit your company website. If you offer free shipping or discounted prices from your site, you’re a lot more likely to increase your sales. Miller points out that this is an effective marketing strategy that many businesses employ. “Many online shops offer discount coupons and rebates,” he writes.

3. Variety. “One can get several brands and products from different sellers at one place,” writes Miller, “You can get in on the latest international trends without spending money on travel; you can shop from retailers in other parts of the country or even the world without being limited by geographic area.” This too is an important point to make about online shopping. Offering this option allows people from all over the world to buy from you!

4. Fewer Expenses. Miller also writes that staying home and shopping online will save you the money that you would be spending if you were to make an excursion. Consider the fact that you have to eat, use gas and likely buy more items than you anticipated when you go out to shop. By offering your customers the ability to make purchases via your website, you enable them to save a lot of money.

Be sure to check back for tomorrow’s blog as we continue to examine the benefits of online shopping. And don’t forget to contact Synergy Marketing to get your hands on our great promotional gifts. Feel free to check out our website to learn about all of the great gifts that we have to offer. Better yet, call us at 1-877-748-9884!

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02 Dec

Cyber Monday Proves Online Shopping Is Growing

Posted in News on 02.12.13 by John Meloche

Depositphotos_35713985_xsToday is one of the most important days in the holiday shopping calendar. It’s Cyber Monday! And that means that all over Canada, companies are providing significant discounts on the items that are purchased from their websites. If you’ve ever wanted to cash in on the holiday shopping craze, today would be the day to make that statement. That is, of course, provided that you allow your customers to buy from you online.

And why wouldn’t you? According to Carmi Levy on Yahoo.com today, “the future of retail is being written not in a shopping mall or big box store, but on Canadian consumers’ laptops, tablets and smartphones.” In other words, Canadians love to shop online. And that means promoting your business as an entity that allows for such an experience is more important now than ever.

At Synergy Marketing, we’ve always believed in the power of the website. Just a couple of weeks back, we completely revamped our own website knowing that it would help draw more attention to our brand. One of the key components of this revamp was to have clearer depictions of our many amazing promotional products on the home page. We also wanted to give online visitors easier access to the departments that most interested them.

We know that Canadians love to shop online. The statistics are actually quite staggering. As Levy reports, the Bank of Montreal’s 2013 annual Cyber Monday Report found that 49 per cent of Canadian consumers plan to shop online this year. That marks an 11 per cent increase from last year. On average, shoppers plan on spending about $273 each. There is even evidence that Cyber Monday is on the verge of besting Black Friday.

To be specific, Black Friday (which took place last Friday – traditionally an American pastime) has been recognized as the biggest shopping day of the year for several years now. Could Cyber Monday’s popularity be a sign that online shopping will soon become the way of the world? Levy thinks that this may be possible, based on figures from the recent BMO study.

In Canada, Boxing Day is widely regarded as a huge shopping day. However, the report notes that 59 per cent of Canadian consumers plan to take advantage of the sales offered on that day this year. This is down 3 per cent from last year’s survey. With each year, it seems, online shopping becomes more and more popular. Levy notes that a new Visa Canada survey has also found this.

According to Visa, a whopping 75 per cent of Canadian shoppers plan on doing some online shopping this year. And those shoppers plan on spending at least 30 per cent of their total shopping budget while doing so. Levy puts it plainly: “For a retail event that didn’t exist a decade ago…Cyber Monday is already changing the way retailers work.” Is it changing how you work?

At the very least, your website should be encouraging its visitors to buy from you – even if it means having them visit your physical store location. And, if they do, you know that it provides you with the perfect opportunity to build new relationships. Synergy Marketing’s vast array of promotional products has been known to help spark those relationships. Order your today by calling 1-877-748-9884.

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