Black Friday and Cyber Monday are just around the corner – is your business ready? In the latest in our BFCM series, we’re delivering some tips on how to prepare your site for Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
Once the preserve of Americans recovering from their Thanksgiving dinner, Black Friday has become a shopping sensation across Canada. In fact, it’s now a bigger retail event than Boxing Day.
According to the Retail Council of Canada’s annual Holiday Shopping Survey, 40 per cent of Canadian shoppers planned to spend some cash over Black Friday and Cyber Monday, compared to 35 per cent who will shop on Boxing Day.
This is a retail bonanza you won’t want to miss out on. Planning is key to ensuring you cover all the bases. Below, we’ve rounded up several practical tips to help prepare your site for Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
Start Planning Now
When it comes to Black Friday and Cyber Monday, it’s never too early to get your business ready. Sure, nobody is thinking of winter sales while it’s warm and sunny outside, but the sooner you plan ahead the more time you’ll have to ensure everything goes off without a hitch.
Prepare Your Customers to Spend
Shoppers know the likes of Amazon, Best Buy and other big stores will have great sales. How? Because they advertise the sales well in advance. In the weeks running up to Black Friday and Cyber Monday, drop teasers on your social media, email newsletters and your website that a sale is coming they won’t want to miss. Encourage customers to make wishlists of their favourite products in the run up to the sale. That way, if the product goes on sale, they’ll receive an email notification. Sure, there’s a school of thought that says you’ll be cannibalizing sales. Customers know sales are coming and tend to sit on their wallets in the weeks before Black Friday. Share the fact you’re having a sale with confidence.
Email Marketing is Key
While some people think email marketing is an outdated concept, it’s never been more relevant. Engagement rates are proven to be higher via email, and it’s a fertile area for A/B testing an refining your email message. In fact, software like MailChimp allows you to easily conduct A/B testing with two versions of the same email. Email marketing works perfectly for BFCM promotion as it offers a valuable hook for customers to interact with. Start with an initial announcement email in the weeks before the event, followed by exclusive pre-sale coupons that only go to email subscribers. Ensure you have retargeting set up, so clients who abandon a cart or browse without buying receive an email with an offer to entice them back.
Keep Things Simple
Black Friday and Cyber Monday is not the time to reinvent the wheel. Your site is going to come under heavy strain from increased traffic. Not every client is going to be comfortable with how your site works. Make it easy for these customers by simplifying your user design. What is the minimum information you need to display to ensure a smooth purchase? Test the customer journey on your website and look for ways to simplify it. Create a landing page with all the deals as a starting point and target all your marketing toward this page. It’s also worth making sure your server can handle increased load. If not, look to improve your infrastructure.
Keep Some Deals in Reserve
Black Friday and Cyber Monday is a week-long event. Don’t blow all your deals on the first day. Strategically plan out your deals over the course of the week, giving customers reason to come back each day. Anchor each day with one major sale and plan complementary products around it. Think of the example of Amazon and their “lightning deals” that customers can see in advance but not purchase until a specific time/day.
Ready to Help
Want to make sure your business is ready for Black Friday and Cyber Monday? GD Commerce is standing by to help. Contact Us and find out how we can lessen the load.