Online sellers who aren’t selling on the Amazon marketplace are likely to make huge sales this back-to-school season.
That’s because parents and college students prefer to shop on the website of an independent retailer for school supplies rather than general products.
According to Internet Retailer’s recent survey, 292 out of 1,090 consumers plan to shop for back-to-school items online; 37% of them say they will search on Amazon, 32.2% say they will go to Google, while 24.6% say they prefer to buy on a specific retailer’s website.
That surely is a big slice of the cake compared to 3.9% of 515 shoppers who would purchase general merchandise from non-Amazon sellers.
Most parents say they will start their back-to-school shopping early this year to ensure that their orders arrive on time.
Having said that, there’s no better time to set up your wares, especially your best deals, in the forefront of your website than now.
Back-to-school spend to reach $83.6 billion
Aside from pencils, notebooks, backpacks and other required classroom supplies, parents are expected to spend more on new clothes and shoes for their school-age children’s first day, says the National Retail Federation (NRF).
College students, on the other hand, have on-trend apparel and gadgets high on their list.
Based on the NRF’s survey, the combined total spending on back-to-school and back-to-college purchases will reach $83.6 billion this year.
For your business to benefit from this projection, you need to have what shoppers need, which pretty much goes beyond the items on their list.
Ease their shopping experience
Every customer appreciates being given a choice, but don’t overwhelm them with numerous options as this could lead to indecisiveness.
Since your goal is to satisfy them and rake in sales, find out what they need, what your competition is offering, and how you can do better.
Walmart, which is behind Amazon when it comes to breadth of services, came up with a Teacher Wish List on their site which allows schools to post a list of their classroom requirements.
Parents will just have to search for their child’s school to find the items specifically intended for their child’s grade, thus making their shopping easier.
Offer free shipping
Aside from adding a novelty to your website, offer free shipping to become the apple of your customers’ eye.
The NRF said 91% of those who are shopping online intend to use a retailer’s free shipping option, while 54% plan to pick up their online orders in-store.
Free shipping helps increase sales quickly; shoppers won’t hesitate to buy more items to meet the minimum purchase threshold to avail it.
However, if it’s going to have a negative impact on your bottom line, then it would be best to try the joys of click-and-collect.