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Preparing Your Online Store for Increased Traffic This Holiday Season

To best prepare your online store for the increased traffic this holiday season, you need to understand the customer’s journey once they hit your online store

With the fourth quarter started, that means the holiday rush for many decorators is right around the corner. If you have an online store, my hope is you are ramping up your marketing. The OSG Members just got done working through an action plan and marketing calendar, and I hope you have done the same. The main goal is to get as many eyeballs on your site as possible and keep them there long enough to find some items they love and are ready to purchase. Easy peasy, right?

Unfortunately, not so much. Once you get the eyeballs there, the next step is to make sure they can easily navigate to find what they are looking for, and you have removed all of the barriers to them pushing the buy button. To best prepare your online store for the increased traffic this holiday season (that you have generated with your super awesome marketing plan), we need to understand the customer’s journey once they hit your online store.

When most people think of this, they turn to Google Analytics. But we still have a huge blind spot — understanding what people do once they get on your site. What buttons do they push, where do they scroll, what are they searching for, and what are they not finding that they expected to see? The online shopping bunch is a fickle crew, and if your site is slow to load, confusing, or just doesn’t inspire action, people are on to one of the next 1.7 billion available locations they can browse on the internet. But there is a tool that can shed some light on this blindspot — Hotjar.

Hotjar

Hotjar is an amazing tool that acts as a 7-in-1 website analytics and feedback tool that reveals exactly what your visitors think of your website, including the most common issues they have and what they like the most about it. They have a free forever plan that gives you up to 1,000 pageviews/heatmap views and records up to 300 visitors to your website. Plus, you can create three surveys or incoming feedback widgets to get even more helpful information.

Hotjar is easy to set up. You just have to install some code they provide into your site’s HTML <head> element, or they have complete installation guides for most of the major e-commerce platforms as well as WordPress, Wix, etc. Once that code is installed, Hotjar will start capturing data from your site — once you configure what you want to see. Here are the two suggestions I have for you:

1. Install a heatmap

A heatmap is a way to look at the overall traffic coming to your site and see where they scroll, what buttons or links are clicked more often than not, and learn how different devices affect the users’ behavior. This is great to understand where you need to make sure your CTAs (calls to action) go and how to shift content to get it noticed.hotjar-screenshot

2. Create visitor recordings

With the free plan, you can record up to 300 users as they visit your site. This is safe for your visitors as it doesn’t record any personal data, just shows their clicks, motion, scrolling, and searches on your site. You can basically go on the customer journey with them. And after you review a recording, you can delete it and keep your recordings below 300 so it continues to record new ones. This gives you so much information on what the visitors’ expectations are and what you need to change on your site.

For example, one of the OSG Members has this installed and ran a successful Facebook ad campaign that got them a bunch of views on their site. The problem was there were no purchases. So after reviewing the recordings, they discovered people were not quickly finding the product they saw on Facebook and were leaving after some scrolling and clicking. They made a change to the landing page, and people started buying.HotJar Recording

Those are just two of the things you can do with HotJar. But knowing what the customer experience is will make a huge difference in your fourth-quarter results.

Aaron Montgomery

Aaron Montgomery is the co-founder of OurSuccessGroup.com. Its goal is to help 1,000+ businesses in 2020 reach their idea of success through training, community, and accountability. Aaron has 25+ years of experience with personalized products and small business development. You can also find Aaron co-hosting 2 Regular Guys podcast (www.2regularguys.com) He also has his own podcast channel and produces weekly live videos called Small Business Saturdays Series. New episodes are released smallbusinesssaturdayspodcast.com.

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