Jumpstart eCommerce Sales During the Lazy Days of Summer

July 5, 2016


Summertime, and the livin’ is easy, according to Ella Fitzgerald. But making a living in eCommerce during the summer months is challenging. Some reports show that July is the slowest month for eCommerce – down 30% from December sales.

While you might want to take a vacation, go to a trade show or two, and start getting ready for third and fourth quarter, there are still ways to keep up summer sales. Here are some ideas:

  1. Focus on summer holidays and celebrations. Yes, people are chilling out during the summer, but they are also spending money. Folks are buying items for July 4 and cookouts, vacations, weddings, and even back to school. This offers opportunities for online sellers of food, household items, grilling and entertaining products, summer clothing and accessories, calendars, lunch boxes, backpacks and more.
  1. Update the look of your Website. Adding photos of beaches, palm trees, barbecues and other summertime activities let shoppers know that your site is also a summertime destination. Bright colors, and lifestyle images of people of all ages having fun are also helpful.
  1. Send emails. During the summer months, the volume of email decreases. Use that to your advantage. Make the emails more seasonal, as well. Just as you have updated the look of your Website, include summer images and Subject Lines, such as “Christmas in July” or “Fourth of July Blowout.” Worrying that folks will put off reading your emails? Create a sense of urgency, using terms like “Sale,” “Ends On (Date)” and “Last Chance.”
  1. Offer Flash Sales. While summer shoppers may be less focused, flash sales can help them sit up and take notice. Flash sales are sales that are offered for a specific period of time, usually for a day or a certain number of hours. While you’ll definitely want to post the heck out of flash sales on social media, don’t forget emails. According to Monetate, 56% of businesses report that their email open rates are higher with flash sale emails vs. regular emails.
  1. Create a major sale. On July 16, 2015, ecommerce giant Amazon launched Prime Day. This was a 24-hour holiday that Amazon created. The company reported that its Prime Day sales were actually bigger than Black Friday sales, even though they were limited to Prime members. The most amazing part of this “created holiday” was that it was held on a Wednesday, during the traditional retailing “summer slump.”

According to Cnet, worldwide order growth jumped 18 percent over Black Friday 2014, as customers ordered 34.4 million items across Prime-eligible countries, breaking all Black Friday records with 398 items ordered per second. What sold? 47,000 televisions, 51,000 Bose headphones, and 14,000 iRobot Roomba vacuum-cleaning robots — compared with just one unit sold the previous Wednesday.

While this is obviously an extreme example, it does point out that even during the summer slowdown, consumers are ready to buy. Online sellers just have to let them know that an incredible sale day is on the way.

So enjoy your summer, and make the most of summer sales. These tips might help you increase sales so much that your next vacation is your best one ever!

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