Your E-commerce Sales Guide for the 2021 Holiday Season

The holiday season is rapidly approaching. Largely due to social distancing and lockdowns, the COVID-19 pandemic led to increased online spending, up 19% from 2019¹ with Shopee and Lazada among the most visited sites. 

As a small retailer, you want to ensure you’re creating the best possible online environment, reaching your customers with relevant content and campaigns, and offering targeted promotions during key seasonal moments. Here are our recommendations to get you started.

1-Nov-03-2021-09-40-29-54-AMPhoto by Christin Hume on Unsplash

1. Create a Calendar with Key Dates

Asia has almost too many sales days to count. The holiday sales season basically runs from 10 October to 12 December. Many businesses will be thinking about Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas along with more modern holidays and sales events including Black Friday and Cyber Monday. 

Get started by creating a calendar with holiday dates and sales days so you can get clear on your logistical needs like inventory, shipping deadlines, and promotional timelines.

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Photo by Estée Janssens on Unsplash

Strategic Timing for Successful Promotions

Your customers can always go looking for a better offer, so why not go big with your promotions? Prioritize sales on a few big sales days to bring your business bigger returns.

Time your promotions based on your previous sales trends. Think about the affordability of your products and the weight of the purchase decision for your customers.

2. Update Your Inventory: Wholesale to Retail

The COVID-19 pandemic has kept retailers in a constant state of change. Supply chain delays have already taken a serious toll on retail margins in 2021. With the holidays approaching, it’s important that you know what to expect when it comes to purchasing wholesale and shaping your inventory.

Photo by Martin Adams on Unsplash

Supply Chain Delays

Port congestion and supply chain disruptions are likely. Ensure your inventory is stocked as well in advance of important holidays as possible. If you’ve been in business during previous holiday seasons, check your data from years past. Even if you’re new to E-commerce, you can research demand forecasts from E-commerce blogs and search engine data like GoogleTrends².

Stock with Your Customers in Mind

Update your stock with products that align with consumer purchasing trends in our current pandemic setting. Choose trusted suppliers and B2B wholesalers like Trustana³, Global Sources⁴, and Dropee⁵. Find a source that works for your unique business needs⁶. Connect directly with suppliers, and synchronize your deliveries, storage, and shipping through these and other wholesale options. Manage your inventory well and aim to stay ahead of high order volumes.

3. Prepare Your Online Store for Sales

Photo by Roberto Cortese on Unsplash

Exceptional customer service matters now more than ever. If you haven’t recently evaluated your website, take a look at the quality of your user interface and overall user experience. Integrate feedback from site visitors. Do what you can to avoid even the little bit of friction that leads folks to abandon their carts or look elsewhere for a product.  If you’re working with an E-commerce site like Shopee, Lazada, and Shopify, explore their suggestions about how to enhance your online store. 

Prepare for the increased traffic and urgent needs of your consumers. Make sure site visitors can easily find answers to common questions about shipping, returns, and other typical queries. Ensure customers can navigate your online store and make their purchases easily.

4. Drive Traffic to Your Online Store with Promotions

Markus Spiske
Photo byMarkus Spiske on Unsplash

It is tricky to find the right balance between staying competitive in the market, giving customers an enticing deal, and ensuring that your business is still profitable at the end of the day. When creating a sustainable promotion model, ask yourself about product placement, price, and demand.

Time your promotions based on your previous sales trends. Think about the affordability of your products and the weight of the purchase decision for your customers.

5. Start Advertising Early (Now!)

Photo by NeONBRAND on Unsplash

Now that you’ve got the bases covered, it's time to spread the word about your products and promotions. 

If you’re deciding between paid marketing and organic marketing, we suggest you think practically. Build support by engaging your community cost-free through your social media accounts. Create an event on Facebook, or focus on keeping engagement rates high by writing regular informative and entertaining posts on Instagram. Make use of marketplace tools where you can communicate directly with previous customers.

Create new content for your audience like a gift guide that matches your products with ideal recipients. Remember your competitive edge and add the flair that lets customers know what’s unique about you and how you stand out.

Your E-commerce Site Is Ready for Holiday Sales

Photo by Mriam Jessier on Unsplash

As E-commerce grows, it’s consistently saturated with consumer options. You’re in a competitive field, and you must constantly keep up with seasonal trends. This guide gives you the beginners basics on how to tackle your first seasonal sale or up your game for this holiday season. 

Your business has its own niche. Follow these steps and discern how to balance pricing and plan your promotional strategy, and you’ll be well on your way to a successful holiday sales season. Your business and your bank account will thank you.


  1. https://www.edb.gov.sg/en/business-insights/insights/how-did-the-pandemic-affect-online-shopping-behaviour-in-2020.html
  2. https://trends.google.com/trends/?geo=US
  3. https://www.trustana.com/
  4. https://www.globalsources.com/
  5. https://www.dropee.com/
  6. https://blog.trustana.com/blog/top-10-wholesale-online-shopping-suppliers

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