valentines-ecommerce

[FREE ebook] Love and online sales can’t help but grow around Valentine’s Day

Money can’t buy you love but a thoughtful gift surely can. According to Nextopia, in the week leading up to Valentine’s Day retailers saw an 11% improvement in average order value.

The data was based on 500 million shopping experiences on Valentine’s Day in 2014. Total conversions increased by 24%.

This month is about the power of love. Perhaps not everyone will get all lovey-dovey and starry-eyed, but online sellers can love this time because of the increased sales potential. This is one of the biggest shopping seasons the world has seen, bringing in more money than St Patrick’s Day, Halloween and the Super Bowl combined.

Download our FREE ebook on how Valentine’s Day can affect your online sales figures in February.

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Who will get a gift on Valentine’s Day?

Target No. 1: 53% of women said they would end a relationship if they didn’t receive a gift from their beloved one. But they’re not the only ones who will get one…

According to Business Insider, over 9 million pet owners will buy gifts for their pets. Singles may feel quite lonely too. This means that, despite appearances …

Valentine’s Day should have something in store for almost everyone. And if you come up with the right message, you can offer almost anything!

valentines-ecommerce

In February online sales are all about Valentines

In the retail calendar, Valentine’s Day has a prominent position in the month of February. It drives over $18 billion in consumer purchases in the U.S., including, according to some sources, $5.4 billion in ecommerce sales.

No wonder that producing Valentine-oriented content and promotions is a must for many online sellers around the globe. Online sellers, content writers and graphic designers have a great opportunity to tell love stories that will bring them thousands of online buyers. The possibilities and channels are endless.

Some love’n’sales-related stats and facts

Americans love spending their money on Valentine’s Day so here are some facts and figures for you. The data comes from CNN, NRF, business2community and aboutflowers:

  • 224 million: The estimated number of roses grown for 14 February.
  • 51%: The percentage of people who purchase red roses for this occasion.
  • 64%: The percentage of men who purchase flowers for this occasion…
  • $18.6 billion: Total spending reached on Valentine’s Day.
  • $1.9 billion: So much will be spent on flowers.
  • $4.4 billion: So much will be spent on diamonds, gold and silver.
  • 40.7%: This percentage of people will use smartphones to buy Valentine’s gifts.
  • $700 million: This is the amount Americans will spend on Valentine’s Day gifts for their … pets.
  • 14 March: This is when men shower their significant other with romantic gifts in South Korea and Japan.

And last but not least….

… 85%: The percentage of both sexes who say … sex is an important part of Valentine’s Day.

Sales figures get really hot 1 week before 14 February

According to IBM’s Digital Analytics Benchmark, in 2014, online shopping figures were 8% higher one week (Feb. 7 – Feb.13) before Valentine’s day. The numbers were compared with 2013.

Where did this growth take place?

  • Gifts (up 20%)
  • Apparel (up 17%)
  • Health & Beauty (up 15%)
  • Department stores (34%)

valentines-love

The Valentine frenzy was caused by:

  • Mobile traffic and smartphones
  • Social media, especially Facebook referrals.

What are Valentine’s bestsellers?

  • Flowers
  • Candy
  • Jewellery
  • Chocolates
  • Clothing
  • Adult & Lingerie
  • Electronics
  • Travel
  • Wedding
  • Dinner
  • Gift Cards
  • Books & Music
  • Cards and gift cards.

Fun fact!

According to Sainsbury’s, after the Valentine’s exchange of gifts, the romantic mood continued and signs of gratitude were observed. In other words, sales of condoms also grew by 12%.

Remember the emotion behind your Valentine’s sales so spread the love

Not only are you selling a ring, a trip or a box of chocolates, but also … love. It may sound cheesy, but this is what buyers have in my mind when buying gifts for their dates. Reflect this in your product descriptions and advertisements. So instead of saying You must buy this beautiful necklace, say A beautiful necklace that she will love.

This is one of the examples of how you can be readier for the celebration of love. There is a lot of sales potential and some products and services will be in high demand in February. It would be good and wise for you as an online seller to make the most of this opportunity.

valentine-parcels-online-sales

How can online sellers prepare for Valentine’s Day?

For starters, don’t be afraid to spice up your campaigns and content a bit. Why not use a special template and, obviously, the colour red? Create Valentine’s landing pages: With hearts, flowers and the colour red they will look relevant to online shoppers and they will be simply … lovely.

Use your punchy / sexy blog posts to drive traffic to your website and offers. Run Valentine’s Day promotions, such as a kiss% off. Finally, make your offers shareable on Facebook and other social media.

Make your copy and ads relevant AND romantic

Consider the queries that can be used to search for gifts and use relevant words for your Valentine texts. A few examples include chocolates, travel, Valentine’s sale / deal, romantic, gift, dating, red hot and sexy. Take care of your SEO, optimise your pages and include keywords, e.g. Valentine’s Day Jewellery, nearby florist.

This way you increase your chances of being found online and … becoming … (more) attractive.

10 tips for preparing your online shop for Valentine’s Day

  1. Target and segment your audience according to gender, age, relationship and parental status.
  2. Make your webstore mobile-ready with a mobile-optimised design. It should load fast and have a smooth check-out process.
  3. Use apps to notify your (potential) buyers of special offers, discounts and early birds.
  4. Guarantee timely shipping.
  5. Offer free gift wrapping.
  6. Start your AdWords campaigns in advance.
  7. Remarket: target a particular website’s visitors with specific, relevant ads.
  8. Send an email campaign to your customers from the previous year.
  9. Consider partnering with a company that offers complimentary services, for example spa services and flowers. This way you can advertise an offer 2 for 1.
  10. Run a contest.

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Consider a live-chat to answer the buyer’s questions

One of the most common Valentine gifts is jewellery, which as a product is often costly. Take diamond rings and the like as an example… the potential buyer needs some consideration and customer care before the purchase is finalised. Not to mention the fact that many men willing to buy jewellery for their beloved ones will simply feel lost… As a result, they may quickly move on and you will miss a sale.

How to alleviate this problem? Check our e-book!

How to get it right, if your business is not a flower shop or a jeweller’s?

If your product is not that Valentiny, no worries: Online shoppers’ interest goes beyond hearts, roses and chocolates. Many companies use Valentine’s Day as an opportunity to promote a mix of products, for instance saucepans, software, home insurance or cars.

IKEA Australia organised furniture sales, offering free cots for children born nine months from Valentine’s Day. Needless to say, it went viral. Hence, a little bit of creativity can always make your offer relevant and desirable to BOTH more AND less relevant target groups.

valentines-couple

Why not target single people and refocus your offer?

Of course there will be haters, despising the cheesiness that will be in the air around 14 February. All those Valentine sceptics may be single, forlorn or simply cynical. Or simply not very enthusiastic about this commercial holiday. Why not use it to your eCommerce advantage?

You can target the groups named above with the right message, such as:

  • Not in the mood to get lovey-dovey in February? Give YOURself a treat and check our offer!
  • The best is yet to come, for now shower YOURself with gifts!

Not sure if this works? Consider Singles’ Day (11 November), the biggest online shopping day in China: Alibaba recorded sales of USD 14.3 billion. To compare, Cyber Monday sales reached USD 3.07 billion.

Online shoppers & online sellers … buy yourself flowers!

So after all, it may be single people who have the biggest consumption potential. This could be your gold mine, even around 14 February. Or maybe especially in February… The Valentine Love & Pamper YOURself messages can do the trick.

Showing people that they deserve to be loved, whether they are single or in a relationship, inspires positive emotions and puts things into a different perspective. So why not inspire not only couples to shower each other with flowers and gifts, but also single people.

Showing affection to their friends or even themselves can transform the belief that Valentine’s Day is only for the lucky ones who can’t take their eyes off each other. In fact, why not promote the buy YOURself flowers philosophy. Not only will it improve the mood and well-being of many people, but it can also boost Valentine online sales even further!

valentines-flowers-ecommerce

In a nutshell… Ramp up your Valentine online sales

Expect a huge amount of traffic around 14 February. Remember a lot of your website visitors will come from smartphones and tablets so optimise your websites accordingly. Keep in mind relevant keywords, romantic copy and a Valentine design. Think about using a live chat to answer the buyer’s questions and increase their trust in you as an online seller.

If you segment your offers, targeting both those in love and those more forlorn, you increase your audience and the number of potential buyers. This is how you can kill two birds with one stone: Use the same holiday to pamper starry-eyed couples and offer retail therapy to their single counterparts.

As long as you know how to address the needs of the individual segment and reflect these in your advertising messages, you should see satisfactory conversion rates.

And finally …

don’t forget to send a Valentine’s e-card to your customers. After all … all you need is … love.

valentine-ecommerce

Love and online sales can’t help but grow. Grow your online sales NOW!

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