Is Your Website Ready for Holiday Traffic?

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his time of year is busy for online retailers. You need to plan your Black Friday promotions, get your online store ready and make sure you have enough inventory. With all the added traffic that will be coming to your site, it’s imperative that it stays up and running. You would hate for your website to let down a potential customer visiting for the first time.

To ensure your site is prepared for the added holiday traffic, make sure you cover your bases. Here are a few ways to prepare.

Make sure your site can handle high traffic numbers.

Online Black Friday sales jumped 23.6% from 2017 to 2018. The Friday after Thanksgiving was also the first day in history to see more than $2 million in sales from smartphones. It’s clear that more people are doing their holiday shopping online.

To accommodate this added traffic, make sure your hosting plan doesn’t cap monthly site visits. Some do, and this can cause you to miss out on sales and customers. If you’re concerned that your current hosting plan won’t be enough, consider upgrading your plan.

Find out if you’re protected from downtime.

Hosting providers do a good job of maintaining their equipment and avoiding downtime. However, things still happen, and there’s a greater chance of problems during peak shopping times. Ask your hosting provider if your plan includes failover capability, which means your host can switch you to another server if there are issues with your current one. If your plan does not include this, it’s probably time for an upgrade.

Ensure all store pages load quickly.

If you want your pages to be found in the search results, they need to be fast. And, when shoppers arrive, fast loading pages will keep them in your store and enjoying their browsing experience. Some improvements can be made on your own, such as compressing images, removing outdated widgets and choosing an optimized theme. Other improvements may need to be handled by your web developer and hosting provider.

Optimize your images and videos.

Shoppers rely on images and videos to learn about products, so you don’t want to skimp on them. That said, images and videos are usually the slowest elements to load. This is why you need to optimize your media rather than leave it out. Do this by compressing and adjusting load settings, creating lazy load content and checking your performance on Google’s Mobile Friendly Test tool.

Keep your site up to date to prevent hackers.

The last thing you need during the holidays is a data breach. Plan now to protect your site from hackers. Make sure you’re running up-to-date versions of software, scan your site for potential malware and talk to your hosting provider to see if they perform regular scans.

The holidays are here and it’s important to make the most of them. If you need a new hosting provider or any other site maintenance to keep up with holiday traffic, contact Magna Technology today.