Because shopping has evolved on the internet, most of the Christmas chores are now being done online, but it seems even then people are still very stressed out over buying the perfect gift while it can only take a few clicks and item names being types in search bars. What’s going on then?
It’s not necessarily guaranteed you will find the items you want online if not available in a store. Even with websites like Amazon offering so much, people sometimes find themselves frustrated not finding gifts online and they become aggressive and impatient with their clicking/browsing. This behaviour takes place just as much when a website is taking time to load, due to a heavy-trafficked server or slow wifi at home.
Meanwhile, analytics at the retailers‘ offices are showing company bosses that consumers are desperate to find what they want with little time left before Christmas eve. This gives them a chance to get better for the following year.
Through its analysis of data, an analytics company identified a series of different attitudes based on mouse movements and visitor behaviour patterns. Of these mindsets, ‘disorientation’ proved one of the most troublesome, with many shoppers appearing confused and erratic in their movements across a page or ecommerce site.
This ‘disoriented’ mindset is a key sign that Christmas shoppers have lost their sense of direction and are thinking of abandoning a site. Could this be due to the ‘festive fatigue‘ that cripples many at the end of the calendar year, because work deadlines get overwhelming before the holidays? According to research, average conversion rates are as much as 40% lower for consumers with a predominantly disoriented mindset.
If a retailer’s analytics highlight that numerous customers are suffering from disoriented behaviours, it’s likely that a site’s navigation is not providing a clear enough path from browsing to checkout. This can hinder customer loyalty, result in ‘shopping cart’ abandonment and ultimately cost a company valuable Christmas sales.
Understanding the consumer
Where as those with a disoriented mindset don’t know where they are going on a website, exploring visitors simply don’t know what they want. Instead of navigating to the product or page they want – or taking the time to actively compare products and make a decision – ‘explorers’ simply wander around the site as they would when tiredly shopping in a high street store. These visitors are keen to make a purchase and can be a great source of sales, but only if a retailer’s website is capable of converting them.
Around Christmas, online retailers should expect to see a spike in traffic from those with an exploring mindset, as customers start to browse for possible presents and psychologically window shop for ideas. If retailers are to make the most of these visitors, they must tailor their content to bring the calls to action to the forefront of the site, simplifying the buyer journey. Offers and deals are also a great way to convert these ‘explorers’ from window shoppers to genuine customers.
With Christmas now over for another 12 months, should retailers spend more time in the next year understanding ‘festive fatigue’? Shoppers are partly at fault in all this for leaving gift purchases so late, but this behaviour will never change.
We can only hope retailers begin by looking for solutions to help make next Christmas shopping experiences that little bit easier and stress-free. To appeal to this mindset, online retailers must reclaim the notion that shopping online is the easy alternative to going in store. By using a combination of customer data and appealing design, retailers can make Christmas shopping great again and minimise the potential for festive fatigue.
How was YOUR Christmas shopping this year? Will you try starting your shopping earlier next year?