Must-Read Advice for Black Friday & Cyber Monday

November 03, 2016

Black Friday and Cyber Monday have become two massively important dates for any business, big or small. With major holidays quickly approaching, retailers are luring in shoppers and customers swarming for the best deals for their holiday gifts. While these two dates only come once a year, they can have a massive impact on a small businesses sales and promotions, and should not only be prepared for but prepared very well for. You’re likely not a big box retailer like Best Buy or WalMart that is able to offer insane deals, but shoppers are also looking to patronize stores they love and services that bring something to the table. This is where you have an advantage over larger businesses! The size of your business is only a small factor in the kind of marketing impact these days can bring!

According to MarketingLand, e-commerce becomes more and more of a trend as people stop waking up to wait in line outside of a store and instead shop for items online in the comfort of their own homes. In 2015, Cyber Monday was the largest ever, with a 16.4% increase from the year before, while brick-and-mortar sales decreased. This is something to know as a small business! On these busy marketing days, how can you maximize online sales and discounts?

Maximize Your Black Friday and Cyber Monday

  • Make the two dates work together. If you offer a deal online, honor the same deal in store and vice versa. How about offering free shipping or gift wrap as well?
  • Don’t forget about your email newsletter and the power this has to bring people into your store. This is where people will be looking to discover what’s being offered.
  • Create a gift guide and send it out to your email list. This is a breakdown of product or service offerings broken down by age, gender, and more. Experian suggests that these guides see higher open and transaction rates. Don’t forget to promote these on social media!
  • Take the time to offer extra support, service, and holiday hours over that weekend. There will be special value to extended support that you’ll see less of a return turnover than if a customer purchases and then feels remorse without being able to speak with you.
  • Don’t forget about the power of social media for these days. Incorporating sales and promotions here and allowing a user to purchase directly from Facebook, Pinterest, or Twitter can reduce the steps that are typically taken to buy, and increase conversion. If you’re posting about your promotions here, why not also make them easy to access? That being said, join in on conversations about Black Friday and Cyber Monday to promote what you’re doing!
  • Take the extra step to make Black Friday an experience. Why not offer a perk when a customer visits your store or schedules a service? Offer snacks and juice or wine to holiday shoppers while they’re interacting with you to make them feel extra special.
  • Use discounts wisely. Especially for a small business, one of the best things you can do is offer products and services that can be expanded on later. BOGOs for services mean that a customer will come back for a second treatment, or when you offer a discount on something that will need a follow-up or upsell you can promote later. Other tips include making general offers (for example, $10 off every $100, $25 off of every $200 purchase, etc.), giving free gift cards with purchases (so that a customer has an excuse to return to your brand), and offering complimentary shipping or gift wrap.
  • Provide advance warning that you’re doing something so your customers don’t forget about you. While people may naturally search out offers from big businesses on Black Friday or Cyber Monday, if they know you’re offering a deal or discount, they can use this information to plan their shopping schedule and leverage sales.
  • Don’t be afraid of bundling offers or items. If you have extra stock or really want to push a particular item, why not bundle it with something else? The customer feels like they’re getting more bang for your buck and you can smartly move customers the way you’d like to.
  • Abandon the sales mentality and use this opportunity for guerrilla marketing. Hand out free coffee in branded cups to people waiting in line at a store, or partner with an organization to provide a bag of goodies to shoppers. A little non-commercial reminder to holiday shoppers to check out your small business the next time they’re in town.

Using these days wisely can be influential in making a difference during this season of shopping. Make sure your social media profiles are updated with correct information, that your website can handle the extra visitors, and that your mobile website is accessible to all without issue. Take the time in the weeks before this occasion to check and be sure that everything is working smoothly. Plan and schedule your email campaigns! Ensure that you can handle your promotions, the influx of visitors, and the support demands. A successful Black Friday and Cyber Monday weekend this year sets the stage for next year.

We’re looking forward to seeing your campaigns!