Black Friday and Cyber Monday are two of the best days for eCommerce retailers. Not being prepared for it is a financial disaster. The 2021 US holiday season posed the strongest retail growth bringing in more than $1.2 trillion. According to eMarketer, Cyber Monday had the highest sales, clocking more than $10.9 billion, while Black Friday raked in more than $9 billion.
This article looks at the top strategies to get your eCommerce store ready for holiday sales.
- Create a buzz:
Share with your customers the attractive offers and promotions you have put in place for Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Reach out to your customers through channels like your social media handles and email marketing. Black Friday and Cyber Monday are not just one-day events anymore; they are an entire week’s treat for brands. Leverage content marketing, paid ads, email marketing, social media, etc., to acquire new customers.
Have you created marketing plans for the holidays yet? Your customers will start looking for deals from October itself. The sooner they are aware of the offers, the better prepared they will be to take advantage of the holiday season.
- Mobile-optimized website:
Your shoppers will access your site through their smartphones. According to Shopify, their merchants saw mobile transactions accounting for more than 71% of their sales. You want to give them a highly optimized mobile experience to smooth their shopping experience. The website crashing during peak sales time is a disaster. You will regret it unless you have invested the time and effort required.
Here are a few things you need to do:
- A/B testing across the site.
- Employ behavioral targeting to send personalized offers to your visitors.
- Check the performance of every interaction touchpoint.
- Optimize the checkout process.
- Reduce the number of steps required to complete every action.
If your mobile experience isn’t optimized, it isn’t just a bad experience on the mobile; your customers will think of it as a bad brand experience.
- Offer free shipping:
We cannot stress this enough. Everybody loves a good deal, and free shipping is almost a legit expectation nowadays.According to The State of Shipping Report 2022 , 62% of shoppers expect their orders to arrive in less than three business days when they choose the free shipping option. Guess what? Most retailers still take 5 to 8 days to deliver the goods.
Your customers want free shipping and expect to get the order fast. If free and fast shipping isn’t something you offer yet, you might want to work on this before the holiday sales begin.
- Reward your loyal customers:
Use the holidays as an opportunity to reward the customers who previously brought from you. Offer them exclusive discounts or offers that will make them buy from you again. Send these customers targeted emails explicitly addressed to them. When they land on your website, share Black Friday and Cyber Monday discount codes through live chat messages, pop-ups, or chatbots.
Put them into a loyalty program where they get access to extra discounts and offers for every action they take. The actions could be as simple as them referring friends and family, sharing your eCommerce store’s updates on social media, liking your posts, etc.
- Update your products and inventory:
Is there a category of products that sells the most during the holiday season? If yes, ensure that you stock them, so you don’t run out of items when the sales peak.
Spend time updating the product descriptions, including the meta description and the selection of pictures. The product details should be spelled out so that customers immediately understand the product’s nature. Make it easy for the customers to complete their orders.
- Leverage customer testimonials:
If you don’t leverage the all-powerful customer reviews regularly, this is the time for you to do that. Email your old customers and ask them for reviews. Offer an excellent incentive for each review. Tell them that they get the incentives regardless of the nature of the reviews. You don’t want to be known as that brand that bribed its customers for positive reviews.
Going through the experiences of other users is a big part of the purchase decision. Since customers don’t want to make mistakes, especially during the holiday season, they will triple-check the product they buy. Also, use customer feedback as a tool to understand what went wrong.
- Influencer campaigns:
Do get into influencer marketing during the holidays because it can increase your sales. You might want to take baby steps before jumping into this. The influencers you associate with should have an audience similar to yours. It is also imperative that you have a clear idea of the kind of value that you want to create with influencer campaigns.
The structure of the collaboration should be clear. The goals could be to generate interest for the Black Friday and Cyber Monday campaigns. You have to start the collaboration well in advance for something like this. If you are only looking for sales from the association, then you might want to campaign aggressively during the holiday week.
- Invest in social commerce:
4.3% of eCommerce sales in the US were attributed to social commerce, according to Business Insider. Most of your customers will spend time researching new products and services on social media. eCommerce sites cannot afford to slack on using social media to drive sales. The majority of social media platforms allow social commerce. Social commerce refers to the ability of customers to view the products inside the platform and complete the purchase in the app itself.
- Ensure that your website is ready:
Check for potential issues that can happen during the holiday season. Is your website optimized to handle all kinds of traffic? Ensure that your website will be incident-free. More than 70% of shoppers will abandon the site if they have a poor experience while they are on the site. You need to offer the best possible customer experience so that they can have a seamless purchasing experience.
To reduce the instances of too many customer queries, use the services of a chatbot to handle them. Automate your operations to be more productive and save time. Use artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies to automate product assortment and make sorting decisions.
- Create a gifting guide:
Gift guides are the rage during the holiday season because it clears the inherent confusion associated with finding gifts for one’s loved ones. Write a comprehensive gifting guide to help your customers choose the right products for them. Introduce product bundles to make it easy for customers to buy. Combine them with other special offers to make the most of the holiday season.
Black Friday and Cyber Monday can be a money-minting machine when used rightly. Following some of the above strategies will keep you in a position to get the most from the holidays. Maximize your revenue potential and land more clients by using the right technologies. According to Shopify, the peak sales per minute during the holiday season was $3.1 million. You don’t want to miss out on this.
If you would like to equip yourself with a loyalty program and provide gift cards to your audience during the holiday season, we are here to help. Get in touch with the 99minds team, and we will tell you how we can increase your ROI for Black Friday and Cyber Monday.