At the start of 2022, it’s important to start preparing your eCommerce business for the Chinese New Year. Almost all Chinese business operations come to a complete halt during a 1-4 week period, which includes most Chinese suppliers. But don’t fret! Even with dropshipping businesses heavily relying on Chinese suppliers, we have compiled some simple steps you can take to prevent any bumps in the road your store or your customers might face during the Chinese New Year.
Chinese New Year 2022 Timeline
Chinese New Year 2022 will take place starting on February 1st. Typically, suppliers will take at least a week off to celebrate the holiday. But plan for at least 3-4 weeks in factory and supplier shutdowns to make sure that you are fully prepared. It’s safe to expect that most suppliers and factories in China will start to shut down at the end of January.
Shipping Products During Chinese New Year
It’s fairly common for suppliers and factories to slow down production a week or two before the beginning of Chinese New Year. Don’t worry though, many manufacturers will have enough inventory in stock so they can continue selling until the actual week of the holiday. But this can mean that orders placed in that time frame might be delayed in addition to any orders placed during the actual celebration of Chinese New Year.
Our factories are estimated to shut down between January 15th and February 10th.
So, What Can You Do?
Many blogs and Facebook groups will overexaggerate the Chinese New Year timeline and tell you to close your store. But, should you? No, of course not! Similar to any other type of business, there are always periods of implications. The bright side is that this is an implication that we can prepare for in advance.
Halting your momentum in your eCommerce business can have benefits and drawbacks during this time. This could be a great time to promote discounts on pre-ordering products. Chinese New Year is still a great opportunity to hone in on your customer service skills and focus on plans to scale your business following the ending of the holiday.
Transparency is Key
The easiest way to mitigate customer frustration is to be upfront. Make it very clear that there will be potential shifts in shipping times. Put a notice on your product pages declaring delays may happen due to the holiday season from January 15th to February 10th. You should also add this information to your shipping policy page, and order confirmation email or checkout page.
If you are transparent with your customers prior to the placing of an order on your store, shoppers will be able to make their own educated decisions as to whether or not they’d like to purchase during this time period. In most cases, they will still go through with making a purchase. They just want honesty!
You can also add incentives such as a coupon code on your product page for the inconvenience. An example would be something like: “Because of the holiday season and small delay with your shipping here is a 5% off coupon from us for the inconvenience.”
Marketing during Chinese New Year
While it can be a good idea to continue running paid advertising during Chinese New Year, it may be best to put them on hold. Even though there is far less competition during the holiday, dropshippers will need to rely heavily on good customer service to mitigate refund requests for order delays. However, if you do decide to continue running ads, now is not the time to scale but to maintain. Be mindful of your spending in an effort to be frugal during a time of small order volume.
Also, don’t forget to continue your cost-efficient marketing efforts. Even if you are spending less on paid advertising, continue to capitalize on the use of social media, blogging, email marketing, and affiliate programs. With how quickly potential customers scroll through their social feeds and move from one shopping focus to the next, you want to keep your brand at the forefront of your customers’ minds. Additionally, this is a great time to build rapport with returning customers while building relationships with potential customers.
At Zendrop, we are dedicated to getting you through the potential stress that is the Chinese New Year. Don’t let a couple of weeks of the year ruin the momentum of a business you have worked so hard to create! Start creating your action plan now so that you are fully prepared.