Cyber Monday is the Monday following US Thanksgiving holiday. After a long weekend of shopping consumers eagerly take to their computers seeking the best online deals. So much online shopping transpires that day that it's hard to believe people get any real work done.
This year Cyber Monday falls on November 26, 2012, just 196 days from now. That's not a lot of time to get your e-commerce jewelry website up and running.
HOLIDAY WARNING: If you don't start working on your e-commerce website by June 1, 2012 you probably won't have it live in time for this year's holiday season. From our experience, it just takes too long for a jewelry e-commerce website to be designed, programmed, photography, and product upload.
According to comScore, the 2011 Holiday season was 15% higher at $37.2 billion than in 2010. Cyber Monday was the biggest online shopping day for the second year in a row. Don't you want some of this action?
Admittedly we always tell you to skip the e-commerce process because there are too many variables involved. Some of the things that give many small jewelry stores pause include website security, setup, online credit card charging, charge backs, and online fraud. But just because e-commerce is a scary game that doesn't mean you should ignore the business that your online product catalog could bring.
Consumers want products! Our data shows that jewelry store websites with product catalogs always have higher number of page views and longer average on site visits than those jewelers without product catalogs. Product catalogs typically generate 8 more viewed pages at about 29 seconds each. We're seeing consumers flipping through online catalog, but spending very little time looking at each individual.
You need to slow the customers down. They have to stop and smell the roses, so to speak. Naturally websites don't include smell-o-vision, so you need other obstacles to slow them down. Here are a two ideas that will slow your customers down and entice them to consider the jewelry you're selling.
Idea # 1. Write more detailed descriptions. Face it, short descriptions like "18k WG 1.2ctw Round Brilliant Diamond Engagement Ring with 6 pave princess cut diamonds" is just not good enough. You've got to have a minimum of 50 words that someone would consider reading. This also helps Google match customers to your website. No one wears a ring and looks at it fondly as says "I love my 18k WG 1.2ctw Round Brilliant Diamond Engagement Ring with 6 pave princess cut diamonds." Well, someone might... but it's unlikely! You have to romance it; you don't tell them that they want it, but you agree with them that want it.
Idea # 2. Display multiple photographs of each item. Yes, getting a single photograph is hard enough, but multiple jewelry photographs are next to impossible. Vendors usually don't have extra photos which means you need to take them yourself. And some vendors are getting wise and DO have alternate shots, so there are no excuses. "Alternate shots" also includes extreme close-ups, so if you're starting with a big enough photo, you might be able to actually get 3 "different" shots: full on, stone detail, metal detail.
Both of these ideas (details, photos) give the customers something else to do other than just click the "next" navigation link in the browser. Longer descriptions get them to stop and read for a moment, and the extra photos create extra engagement because the consumer needs to click them. Both actions (reading/clicking) will create deeper interest in your store, and trust.
So get started today. You might be thinking that JCK is the most important thing happening on June 1 this year, but in reality, the decision to start working on your product catalog website, and potentially your e-commerce website is paramount.