This year, the shopping frenzy kicks off on November 25th. Christmas is coming, and tempting sales are prying wallets open. Grab a slice of the profits for your online store and put together a profitable Black Friday strategy. How do you do that?
Communicate openly and plenty in advance
More than 94% of Slovaks are familiar with Black Friday. They look for (and expect) discounts. You’ll gain much more if you nudge them in the right direction.
Build up expectations gradually
Start preparing your customers from early November, as soon as the All Saints holiday travel period subsides. Make use of social networks or emails. Prepare posts and videos about upcoming sales. At the same time, use early campaigns to test your ad targeting and see which audiences respond best to your offer. You’ll appreciate this data later during Black Friday weekend.
Black Friday marketing doesn’t lie
Misleading sales promotions are a sort of national sport among the major Slovak portals. Don’t succumb to pressure, and communicate fairly.
Slovak legislation is vague in this respect. If the online store does not lie about the actual price and states the correct amount of discount, everything is fine. The fact that 30 days ago, the price was not EUR 100, but only EUR 70, is no longer relevant according to the law.
Customers will spot artificially inflated prices when comparing prices on price comparison sites. Perhaps this is why Alza left Heureka in 2016.
In the Czech Republic, a law will soon come into force that imposes an obligation on online stores to state, among other things, what a product price was 30 days before the discount was applied.
Emphasise the sales end date
Determine how long the sales will last for your business. Two weeks or just Friday to Sunday? Whether you opt for a longer or shorter period, the sales must have an end.
Take advantage of the well-known Fear of Missing Out (FOMO) phenomenon and let customers know that if they don’t complete their purchase by a specific date, they will lose out on the promotional price.
Create a sense of urgency by:
· informing of limited stock availability,
· creating good-quality texts that encourage buying,
· offering temporary free delivery,
· labelling a product as “selling fast”,
· providing a label stating how many customers had already purchased the given item.
Prepare your online store
Communicating with customers is just one part of the whole strategy. Powerful PPC campaigns and great conversion rates rest on the shoulders of your website’s ease of use, clarity and speed.
Sales require their own sup-page
Don’t direct visitors from PPC ads, social networks or newsletters to your regular retail pages. A campaign as large as Black Friday deserves a dedicated subpage. By doing this, you can:
· target PPC campaigns precisely,
· measure the performance of the entire offer,
· analyse buyer behaviour for the purposes of the following year’s campaigns. In terms of design, focus on the finer details. In addition to creating banners and special offers, refresh existing elements. Create a digital sales atmosphere. Edit the header and footer. Temporarily change the logo to black and so on.
Add elements of urgency to the site
You can create urgency not just through words and descriptions but also through graphic elements. Upload a countdown to your site, marking the time left until the end of the event. Customers will immediately see how much time they have left to decide.
Show available quantity. If the customer sees that the product in the basket is limited in stock, they will rush to buy it. Labels such as ‘frequently purchased’, ‘few items left’ or ‘favourite product’ are also motivating.
As many as 67% of Brits shop using their mobile phone. In the second quarter of 2020, only 5.3% of people in the UK ordered new products via desktop. Keep these numbers in mind when preparing campaign visuals or subpages for the website.
Optimise everything for mobile first and foremost, and only then for desktop browsers.
Black Friday email marketing
Split up promotional emails into several groups, such as “pre-Black Friday,” “Black Friday,” and “post-sale announcements.” By doing this, you will separate the message of each phase of promotional communication. At the beginning of November, send out promo codes or simply inform your subscribers about upcoming promotions. Send the Black Friday information a few days before the sale, ideally between 9am and 11am. That’s when, statistically, emails have the highest deliverability rates.
Scarcity tactics are highly effective. They make readers feel like they’re missing out on crucial information if they don’t open it. This trick can only be used once, but it proves that a creative email subject line fundamentally affects the number of opens.
Launch PPC campaigns
Paid advertising, along with remarketing, still brings the vast majority of sales to online stores. The fiercely competitive environment will drive advertising prices even higher. Be prepared to adjust your budget and bid price. Online stores that use automatic bidding have an advantage.
Spend your budget hierarchically and bid higher on valuable customers, such as those who have already visited the site or added products to their cart. Optimise the shopping feed, ensure as many products as possible are reconciled and use Performance Max campaigns.
Learn from previous years. Which keywords brought the most traffic? Be aware that in the weeks leading up to Black Friday, people tend to search for more general terms. As the sale approaches, terms get more specific.
Do you find it a lot to take on? Leave your PPC campaigns to the specialists and instead invest your energy in improving distribution, packaging and shipping, so you don’t delay sending out orders.
Black Friday marketing on Facebook
Facebook’s algorithm needs time to optimise campaigns. Run your first promotions on a smaller scale and in advance of the week before Black Friday. You’ll collect plenty of data for those all-important campaigns.
Prepare a bigger budget
Set aside a bigger marketing budget for advertising during Black Friday than you would in any other month. As customer interest grows, so does the supply of online retailers, leading to higher advertising prices.
Build your audience
Check your audiences before launching campaigns. Use your own custom audiences created using Pixel or emailing. Keep in mind that each list should have at least a thousand users so that Facebook can optimise ad impressions.
Suitable audiences for online stores are for instance, from:
· page views,
· add to cart,
· newsletter subscribers,
· or people who reacted to your Facebook or Instagram.
Do you need powerful and precisely targeted social media ads? Attractive Facebook and Instagram advertising will attract people who are genuinely interested in your product or service.
But for this, you need the right audience, interests and strong creative.
Don’t lose your impulse buyers
The life span of new customers you acquire during Black Friday sales is the shortest.
Keep yourself fresh in their mind, send a thank you email, a satisfaction survey or ask them about their shopping experience, ideally in exchange for a quid pro quo, such as a discount on their next purchase. Do whatever it takes to stay on their radar. Of course, in a positive way.
Prevent post-sales returns
Many customers spend more than they planned during the sales. They can regret the money spent and return some products. This will ease both their conscience and their wallet.
If you don’t want to have to deal with unwanted returns, increase the perceived value of the order. Give the customer a gift at the time of purchase and ensure express delivery.
Do you need a Black Friday strategy?
Don’t despair, it’s not too late. Contact us, and together we’ll find a way to optimise campaign performance and increase margins.