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Three Tips on Making Your Site a Holiday Shopping Destination

With luck many online sellers are enjoying the benefit of Cyber Monday week, where consumers returning to the workplace after the Thanksgiving holiday weekend turn to their internet connections to do some deal hunting. Naturally as more people head online to shop, criminal types also pop up and try and grab some profits of their own.

Ecommerce pros can and should be doing several things already as they present themselves as a valuable and trustworthy shopping destination. At the website of Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane, her office detailed several ways consumers should look out for themselves when shopping today.

Those ideas do suggest what online merchants should be putting on display for their visitors. But these three stand out:

Post a Privacy Policy 
First, have a privacy policy available on the website. This tells visitors how their personal information might be used; a site lacking a privacy policy could be inadvertently turning away a potential customer. Also, the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act is a federal law requiring a privacy policy be on display when collecting information about children under the age of 13, something which sites marketing to that segment need to understand.

Post Holiday-Delivery Cutoff Dates
Second, federal law also requires order placed online, as well as by phone or mail, be shipped within 30 days if no shipping date is specified. Online sellers should be proactively telling their visitors how late they can order in December to receive in-stock items by Christmas anyway.

Post Your Return Policy
Third, make one’s return policy clearly available. A particularly friendly policy may be the difference between a sale and an abandoned shopping cart. Zappo’s return policyfor example is one that has earned a reputation for its friendly 365 return terms.

There should be plenty of sales available for diligent and effective ecommerce sellers beyond the big names at the top of the online retail chain. ComScore suggested in November that Cyber Monday will be the heaviest online spending day in history, with figures possibly approaching $2 billion in spending.

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David A Utter
David A Utter
David A. Utter is a freelance writer based in Lexington, KY. He has covered technology topics from search to security to online business and has been quoted in places like ZDNet and BusinessWeek. He considers his appearance on NPR's "All Things Considered" with long-time host Robert Siegel a delightful highlight. You can find him on Twitter @davidautter and on LinkedIn.