Back to school e-commerce trends

Guest Post: Michal Harel

As the back-to-school frenzy comes to a close, we saw how many e-commerce sites were gearing up to handle this HOT period of the year.

Traditionally, the companies that had most to gain from the back‑to-school season were those engaged in selling apparel, books, school stationery, and other large depots. In recent years, however, virtually every e-commerce site wants to have a piece of the pie, and even cars and home appliance retailers have their own 'back-to-school' slogan.

How do retailers get ready for back-to-school sales? Here are some common trends we observe among all e-commerce sites.

  1. Create more targeted deals that are related to school but which are also good for families; for example, SUV promotions or college loans.
  2. Adapt the homepage a few weeks in advance of school starting. You can change its color to fall colors or modify the layout to fit a specific promotion. Also change the page's keywords to optimize SEO.
  3. Put images of children EVERYWHERE – in school, in the park, in cars – EVERYWHERE.
  4. Launch email campaigns with special promotions targeting families, moms and dads. Promote products that cater to their needs in the upcoming school year.
  5. Personalize, personalize and personalize. Look at referral URLs to search for keywords like 'school' or 'learning' to personalize your landing pages for visitors coming from these referral URLs. Feature relevant promotions.
  6. Make few changes. Try to stay away from user interface and platform changes. On the one hand, you won't confuse returning customers who get a 'familiar face' when they land on your site or want to make a purchase. On the other, you don't risk having technical errors on new pages that may cause visitors to drop the session.

Visitors compare deals in most eCommerce sites. We can clearly see sessions that are pause and reloaded, which takes several minutes. Others will copy a product’s name and specifications before leaving the site, which is a clear indication that they are window shopping somewhere else.

When competition is fierce and the web is inundated with competitive deals, try to simplify your users' experience. Make it easier for them to convert, provide all information they need, don’t hide shipping costs or other important information.

In short, make sure your customers have a pleasant journey through your pages so they return for Thanksgiving.

Michal Harel is a Customer Experience Consultant at Clicktale. As such she provides ongoing consulting services to some of Clicktale's largest enterprise customers (Fortune 500 companies) to help them optimize digital interactive strategies and tactics, gain unique insights into and across various digital channels and help them use this insight to drive better ROI.

Michal has over 10 years of experience working with enterprise customers. Prior to joining Clicktale, Michal worked as an Account Executive for IBM Canada (based in Toronto) working on large outsourcing deals, managing global delivery projects and groups, mainly in the Financial sector.Prior to that, Michal practiced law for a few years, when she worked for Bank Leumi Le Israel and for the Israeli Securities Authority.

Michal Holds an LL.B and BBA from the Interdisciplinary Center In Herzliya, LL.M from Tel Aviv University and an MBA from Rotman School of Management- University of Toronto.


Learn more about Clicktale's e-commerce conversion rate optimization


Talk to us to explore how customer experience analytics can improve your business