New year, new opportunity to start 2019 off right with our awesome eCommerce marketing calendar! 🎉 Doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue like “new year, new you.” But, we think it’s a ton more exciting.
With this downloadable 2019 eCommerce marketing calendar you can see at a glance the key holidays that are coming up. Of course, we couldn’t include EVERY holiday, just the more common ones, so be sure to adapt the calendar to fit your brand. 😎
But wait, there’s more! We know that just having a calendar with the big holidays on it isn’t enough to keep you going. In this post, we’re going to share a month-by-month strategy that you can use to get you hitting all those goals and resolutions without missing a beat.
Are you ready to rock 2019? You’d better be because we’re ready to see you do it.
In January, your focus will be on building out your marketing plan based on your customer journey, starting with getting visitors to your site.
Email marketing remains the most effective and direct way of nurturing and communicating with your leads and turning them into customers. It consistently beats out other communication channels like direct mail and social media.
If you’re familiar with email marketing, but would like some help getting started, check out our guide: Email Marketing Made Simple.
Starting from nothing? You’ll definitely benefit from our OptinMonster University execution plan How to Get Started With Email Marketing. Check it out!
Beginning-of-the-Year eCommerce Tips
- Health and fitness products, productivity, and personal development products and services are HUGE
- Use clearance sales to keep stock moving
- Try bundles or upselling to clear out excess inventory
Now that we have email marketing in place, it’s time to take things to the next level with segmentation.
Email list segmentation lets you divide your email list up into smaller groups based on things like demographics (age, location) and psychographics (interests, beliefs). This allows you to create targeted email campaigns that resonate more with your customers.
In addition, these targeted emails have other benefits like:
- Higher open rates
- Better click-through rates
- Increased sales
- Better customer retention
- Lower unsubscribe rates
You can easily segment your email lists with an optin like this one:
Learn how to create a simple optin here.
Post-holiday sales are probably slowing down by now making this a great time to work on lead generation to increase your email list. ✨
Lead generation is just the technical term for getting visitors’ contact info and their permission to reach out to them. Since your email list naturally degrades by a little over 22% every year, lead generation is an ongoing project.
Quick Tip: Keep your email list fresh and up-to-date with our guide: Email Scrubbing: Why and How to Clean Your Email List (Step by Step)
There are more great ways to generate leads like:
- Creating lead magnets or content upgrades
- Writing high-quality blog posts
- Using compelling social proof like reviews and testimonials
OptinMonster University has a sweet execution plan that will help you get your first (or 101st) lead magnet published on your site. Enroll in OMU today! New courses and execution plans are coming in early 2019.
So far, you’ve started out your email marketing, segmented your lists, and given your lead generation a boost. Great work for your first quarter!
Now, it’s time to pay special attention to your email subject lines with the goal of increasing your email open rates.
A good email subject line can make or break your entire email campaign. Nearly half of the people you email decide whether or not to even open your email based on the subject line alone. Additionally, almost 70% of email recipients report email as spam using the subject line as their only criteria. 😫
Here are some ways to make sure that your email subject lines are optimized:
- Be personable and engaging on a human level
- Write with mobile users in mind
- Be original and interesting
- Try out emojis (but not too many)
- Check out this list for more ways to improve email open rates
Spring Season eCommerce Tips
- Love is in the air: take advantage of wedding season
- Promote high-ticket, wedding gift, bridal party items
- Travel sales will start picking up
- Offer benefits like gift wrapping, free shipping, etc.
As you continue to work on improving your subject lines, you may start to wonder… “What’s the secret to getting subscribers to click?”
Writing for them.
But writing for your audience means that you first have to know your audience. You’ve already learned about the customer journey and ways to segment your customers. Now, you can build on that knowledge to create buyer personas.
A buyer persona sometimes called a “customer avatar,” is a fictional person that represents your ideal customer.
Creating a buyer persona for each type of customer in your target audience can be a brilliantly effective tool for creating content that interests and excites your audience.
By now you should be seeing improvements to your open rates, so let’s tackle those email click-through rates by creating engaging email copy.
Use your buyer personas to write targeted and personalized emails that appeal to readers’ emotions and get them to take action.
Here are sure-fire ways to keep your subscribers engaged and clicking:
- Write like a real person
- Convey action with power words
- Write in a way that builds trust with subscribers (and back it up with your actions)
- Don’t engage in sleazy marketing practices
July is the slowest month for eCommerce sales. In fact, sales drop by about 30% during the summer when compared to the big-hitting holiday months like December. 😒
Here are some ways to keep your site optimized throughout the year:
- Keep your product pages engaging and up-to-date
- Follow your holiday eCommerce optimization plan for a mid-year tuneup
- Improve your mobile landing pages
- Adopt these SEO tips to increase traffic!
You can take advantage of the increased traffic from your optimized site with a beautiful exit offer popup like this one:
Check out our tutorial to create your own exit offer popup.
Summer Season eCommerce Tips
- Start your summer sales early
- Plan marketing for common summer events like graduations, weddings, fairs, and festivals
About 40% of Back to School shopping happens in August. 😎 You’ll see sales start to pick up in mid-August from the Back to School boost and they’ll likely stay steady until holiday sales give you a huge push in November.
Did You Know: Dads outspend moms by 37% when they’re in charge of back to school shopping!
Since this month is all about counting down to the first day of school, why not create some awesome optins using countdown timers?
So far, you’ve been running lead generation and email marketing for nearly 3 entire quarters. You should be seeing improved open rates and click-through rates and your email list should be growing. That’s awesome!
This month, we’re going to focus on developing your social media presence. 🤩⚡✨
For starters, you don’t have to be on EVERY social media platform out there. You only need to be on the platforms that your customers are using. (Time to go back to those buyer personas.)
Having said that, most eCommerce businesses can’t go wrong with Instagram.
You can generate leads on Instagram by using Instagram lead generation ads, of course, but you can also generate leads by:
- Engaging with your audience
- Sharing user-generated content
- Use Instagram Stories
- Partnering with an influencer
October is crunch time for the holiday shopping season.
This month you’ll need to fine-tune your Black Friday and Cyber Monday marketing plans, pull out all the stops to get your site running smoothly, and get it completely optimized.
The 2 most important things that you need to do are:
- Planning out your sales.
- Testing your tech.
Be sure to check out our holiday marketing guide to get your site ready to rock.
Holiday Season eCommerce Tips
- Offer free shipping
- Optimize for mobile
- Create upsell promotions and other ways to increase average order size
About 70% of shoppers abandon their carts, so before Black Friday make sure you have an abandoned cart recovery strategy in place.
The best way to reduce abandoned carts is to keep carts from being abandoned in the first place. Here are some ways to reduce abandonment:
- Use exit-intent popups
- Be up front with shipping fees and other additional costs
- Enable guest checkout
- Make checkout super fast and really easy
If you can’t catch a shopper before they abandon their cart but you do have their email or another way to contact them, you can start sending them abandoned cart recovery communications.
As your year draws to a close it’s time to reflect. Review your marketing campaigns: what worked, what didn’t, and why. Once you’ve found campaigns that work for you, automate them to save time.
If you tackle eCommerce marketing automation the right way, you can save time and still maintain quality relationships with your customers. 😍😍😍
An easy way to get started with automation is by automating your email marketing. Here are 4 eCommerce email automations that all businesses need:
- Abandoned cart recovery email sequence
- New subscriber welcome email sequence
- Most valuable customers funnel email
- New customer automation sequence
That’s it! A full year of marketing strategies to make 2019 your strongest year yet. We hope you find this month-by-month strategy guide and eCommerce marketing calendar useful.
If you’re not already using OptinMonster, you’re missing out. It takes roughly 60 seconds to sign up and you’ll be on your way to generating leads like mad. Join OptinMonster now!
Exclusive Bonus: Click here to download our free 2019 eCommerce Marketing Calendar!