Free Shipping for the Holidays. How Important is it?

As eCommerce stores rush to get their final holiday offers out, many are still missing out on a major marketing initiative that drives today’s online shoppers to make purchases – free shipping!

For the majority of shoppers, free shipping now trumps fast shipping. Even more importantly, many consumers are willing to pay a premium for their products in an effort to avoid paying any shipping charges. And it doesn’t stop there as online shoppers now expect free shipping all year-round. According to a UPS and comScore poll, an astounding 88 percent of shoppers said that shipping charges was THE driving reason they abandoned their cart.

Given shipping’s important role in a consumer’s purchase decision, eCommerce stores should not only offer free shipping during the holidays, but should consider offering free shipping all year round – making sure to emphasize their shipping offers. “I always recommend to our customers that they should make their shipping offers prominent throughout their website, not just on their home page,” explains Amber Haack, responsible for customer success at Springbot. “Online shoppers typically won’t complete their orders unless free shipping is part of the deal – so eCommerce stores displaying the offer prominently is a marketing-must.”

Bonus? In addition to offering free shipping, make sure your eCommerce store is prepared with our 2013 Holiday Season Important Dates Calendar that encompasses all the major holidays and important shipping dates.