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Use Analytics to Take a Peek at Peak!

Posted on August 31st, 2010


The “dog days of summer” is the time that retailers start preparing for the peak holiday shopping season.  Analyzing last year’s metrics is a reliable and specific method to help you reach this year’s goals.

Your metrics cover all disciplines you use to run your ecommerce business.  They are business “gold”.  Why capture data if you’re not going to learn from it?

Don’t miss the opportunity to use this data to have a great 2010 holiday season.

Here are tips for where to start, what to look at and how to use it.

  • Study last year’s traffic, page loads, visits and hits.
  • Analyze what worked and did not work, promotionally.
  • Look at order flows and staff your distribution centers accordingly.
  • Study customer service metrics so you can staff and train your Call Center correctly.
  • Prepare for load testing on your servers.  Down time = lost customers.
  • Tweak your marketing plan based on last year’s results and this year’s promotions and merchandise.
  • Engage in A/B testing now. Engage in multi-variant testing of new site design concepts, features and functionality to get real data before locking down your holiday marketing calendar.
  • Segment your customer base. Holiday shoppers are buying for others (mostly!).  Change the look-and-feel, products and promotions for the type of audience that is going to be buying during the holidays.
  • Look at who shopped last year, how and when. This will help you determine how often to change the creative during your peak season.
  • Finalize your holiday marketing plan and have back-up plans ready to implement if there are surprises in the numbers.

Bottom Line:  This season’s answers are in last season’s numbers. The key to increasing revenue and profit is understanding what happened in the past and adjusting accordingly to prepare for the future.

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