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Is your ecommerce site ready for Christmas?

11/13/2012 | Internet hosting |

With more people than ever turning to the internet as their first port of call when shopping, having a robust website is going to be an essential part of running a successful retail business this Christmas. It's vital that your web servers and IT systems are able to handle any upturn in demand as the festive season draws near, while you also need to make sure your site is user-friendly for visitors. If it's slow or hard to navigate, potential consumers could quickly get frustrated and turn elsewhere. And as there's no shortage of options for people looking to buy gifts online, you need to offer a great experience to help you stand out from the crowd.

Fail to do this and you're likely to miss out on huge amounts of revenue, particularly in the busiest times. Research from IMRG and Capgemini revealed this week that the first two weeks of December will be the busiest period - accounting for up to 27% of total sales for the final nine weeks of 2012 - so if you have work to do to improve your site, you need to move quickly.

Research conducted by Capgemini in partnership with the MIT Center for Digital Business has also emphasised just how important it is to have a strong online presence that's easy to use and presents visitors with the functionality they want. It claimed the most tech-savvy retailers with the most digitally-advanced brands are an average of 26% more profitable than their rivals, so it's clear that taking the time to improve your ecommerce platform can lead to great results.

The IMRG and Capgemini research suggested that the UK alone will spend £4.6 billion (€5.76 billion) on ecommerce sales in the two weeks beginning December 3rd and December 10th. It noted this will be a week later than last year due to many people in the country receiving their final pre-Christmas payday fall in the week after November 26th. This may suggest you need to be aware of any specific factors that affect your local market - wherever in the world you're located - in order to be fully prepared and have your offers in place at the right time.

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