Black Friday and Cyber Monday (BFCM) are just around the corner! Don’t fret, as even with the current economic crisis we’re facing, November is still expected to be the most profitable time of year. Customers are predicted to spend over £8.7 billion this Black Friday weekend.
As you may have seen, some brands have already begun pushing their Black Friday deals through different channels. This was a tactic started by brand giants like Amazon and Argos to maximise sales for the whole month (sometimes called Black Friday Month). If you’ve not done this, don’t worry. There’s still time! Searches for Black Friday don’t start to peak till November 14th. So, let’s all take a breather and relax. Grab a cup of tea, and we’ll go through the essential BFCM checklist to tick off ready for a successful period of selling on your e-Commerce website!
How to stand out from other retailers this Black Friday
1. Social media is your best friend
Before we delve into optimising your website, let’s start with how to attract as many customers as you can. It’s no secret that society is completely centred around social media, and businesses are no exception to this. Showing no signs of slowing down, there are currently 4.59 billion social media users. That’s 4.59 billion people that may come across your brand. So, focus on pushing out as much content as you can in the run-up to Black Friday. Posting three, four or more times a day on Instagram, Tik Tok, Facebook and Twitter will make all the difference. Even better, it’s free!
You’re probably thinking it’s all well enough saying post as much as possible, but what kind of posts do you need to get out for maximum engagement and interest? We also need to bear in mind that rival posts with competitors will be fierce in the run-up to BFCM, so creativity will be key for success. Here are a few ideas to get you started:
Promote discounts alongside trending topics
There’s no better way to boost your brand awareness, than hopping on current trends circling the platform. Aldi is a great example of this, particularly on their Twitter platform. They’ll jump on trending content from bounty being removed from the celebrations tin to Taylor Swift’s new album, seeing them go viral on a monthly basis. It’s a great way to indirectly lead customers to your website.
Be interactive and use polls!
What do customers want from you this Black Friday? It’s easy to find out, just ask! Interact with users about what products, colours and sizes they want to see on offer. What discounts appeal to them? What time will they be shopping for deals? Would they be interested in one-off bundles? Or early access to new products?
Prioritise posting videos over images
Most sources report that videos are a lot better at driving engagement than images. So, it’s definitely worth getting out a few videos/reels featuring your BFCM offerings in the next couple of weeks. However, that’s not saying don’t discard images, as they’ll still be a great way to promote your deals and are actually considered better for clicks.
Offer followers only discounts/competitions
Reward loyalty! Giving your followers exclusive access to discount codes and opportunities to be entered into competitions will show them that you value them as a customer. There’s no better time to do this than Black Friday, where many retailers have often made the mistake of pushing for profits and consequently lose the value of their brand in the process. This is a way to keep sales high while retaining value and customers.
Work with influencers to expand your reach
2022 is the year of influencer marketing. What better way to showcase your BFCM offerings than through your customer’s favourite creators. Gaining customer trust is a big deal these days, and hard to achieve. However, promoting your most attractive Black Friday discounts through someone whose opinion your customers already respect is an easy way to attract interest.
2. Be smart with your offers
Now we’ve led customers to your website, we can move on to the next challenge. Encouraging customers to fill up their online baskets. This is where the type of offer really counts. The secret to a good deal is not necessarily the lowest price possible. Remember, customers will only buy something that they feel gives them value for money. So, don’t go too low on prices, as that can be interpreted as having a lack of quality. Instead, find the balance with appealing deals that still retain the worth of your product. Let’s go through a few ways you can do this:
What better way to encourage multiple purchases than showing your customers the value of buying more than one product at a time. You can do this by offering an increased discount for a certain amount of money spent, or buy one get one free for selected items.
Loyalty discount codes
Emailing exclusive discount codes to customers who have previously shopped with you is a great way to encourage a Black Friday sale. It’s a great incentive to buy, especially when knowing not everyone will have access to that particular deal.
There’s nothing quite like a bold countdown for a limited-time offer, to create a sense of urgency that encourages quick conversions. It’s important to only do this a few times, as well as staggering countdowns across a few days. Too many, and the customer will become unconvinced the discounts are only available for a short time, thus less likely to proceed to checkout.
Launch new products
There’s no better time to bring out your new products than BFCM weekend. A chance to be one of the first to get their hands on something brand new installs the kind of excitement necessary for a successful conversion.
3. Speedy checkout
You’ve now got all the tools you need to bring customers to that all-important checkout page. Careful though, the hardest part is yet to come. The average cart abandonment rate sits at an astonishing 69.9%. A positive checkout experience will determine the success of your Black Friday conversions. So, it’s crucial you don’t skip this step. An optimal checkout page needs:
Alternative payment methods
Choice is everything. Nowadays, there’s no greater choice than ways to pay. From digital wallets to cryptocurrency the list is endless and shows no signs of slowing down. Make sure you’re able to give each individual customer their preferred payment method. Without it, the checkout turns from a seamless experience to a hassle and may result in an abandoned sale.
Smart checkout solutions
Convenience is also a must-have for customers. Using features such as auto-fill and verifying card details as the customer types helps accelerate the time spent at checkout, and confirm the sale before doubts have time to arise.
Don’t limit your customer demographic. Language, currency and local payments should be tailored to every region of potential shoppers. Customers are much more likely to convert if faced with a familiar checkout route that they understand.
One of the easiest ways to increase your conversions has got to be offering free shipping. Reports state almost 50% of customers will abandon their carts when faced with unanticipated shipping costs. Including free shipping at the end of your Black Friday sale will be the final encouragement some people will need to confirm the purchase.
4. Returns for retention
That’s most things ticked off the list. We’ve gone through all the essentials from initially directing consumers to your website to achieving that final conversion. Definitely worth a biscuit to go with that tea if you ask me. We’re almost at the end!
There’s just one more thing to leave you with before you’re all set to go. Although BFCM is a great opportunity to boost sales in the short-term, sometimes businesses will forget that there’s also the opportunity for long-term revenue growth. The route to this is simple. Easy, free returns = more customer retention. Klarna states that 78% of shoppers will buy more in the long-run if a retailer has free returns. Over 80% of shoppers will check your returns policy and only return to your e-Commerce store if they like it. So, don’t fall down at this final hurdle! Make sure your return policy is clear, effortless and free. The initial cost may not be ideal but think of it as a long-term investment for your business.
You’re now equipped with everything you need for a great BFCM 2022. If you don’t manage to implement everything on this list this year, don’t stress! This list will serve you for many Black Friday’s and Cyber Monday’s to come, so hang on to it and use it to improve those sales every year.
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