Is your eCommerce store ready for the busiest sales week of the year?
Black Friday Cyber Monday, referred to in the business as BFCM, is a weeklong holiday shopping extravaganza full of discounts and heavy traffic immediately following the Thanksgiving holiday.
It has become a favorite time for shoppers to get good deals and for retailers to land great sales.
Let’s take a look at some facts:
Strategy to get the most conversions out of the BFCM season
1. Prep a month early
Some facts to keep in mind:
- 40% of U.S. holiday shoppers say their holiday shopping experience has made them consider shopping much earlier for other milestones
- 37% of shoppers who shopped last holiday season wished they had started earlier
- 50% of shoppers say they will start shopping earlier to avoid an item out of stock
Here are a few ways to prep for the BFCM holiday season:
a. Create product categories with Black Friday and Cyber Monday themes such as ‘Holiday Faves’ and ‘Gifts for Loved Ones’.
b. Add holiday-specific descriptions to product details or information.
c. Show holiday-specific scenarios in product images.
2. Right customers, right places
Promote your products to the right customers at the right time across different channels. Find where your customers spend their time and target them with engaging ads.
You can do a poll or survey on social media to see which products are popular with customers. Here are some popular product categories that regularly sell out during BFCM:
Social media can also be a great way to engage with customers through thematic posts.
Use emails to stir the excitement with an early bird offer and reminders to wishlist products.
3. Easy discovery with high intent SEO
Search intent helps shoppers to discover products and explore different categories.
Here are the four ways to implement functional search intent —
a. Navigational: Keywords users use when searching for a particular brand or product. For instance, what stores are open on Thanksgiving
b. Informational: Informational keywords reflect the information users seek about a particular product.
c. Commercial: Keywords users use when they’re decided to purchase. For example, Is home depot open on Thanksgiving
d. Transactional: At this stage, the user is sure about buying. They’re looking for the best deals. For example, where to buy a turkey for thanksgiving.
4. Look beyond discounts alone
Shoppers love a bargain.
But remember that offering promotional discounts isn’t necessarily the only way to profit more.
Leading up to BFCM, try to talk about the value of your products rather than simply offering them a discount. Highlight qualities such as aesthetics, convenience, or accessibility in your marketing and sales efforts to make your brand stand out.
Use FOMO by running deals that are available for a limited time only, or offering free shipping or delivery for orders over a certain amount. This will entice shoppers to add more to their carts beyond just the initial promotional item that led them to visit your store.
5. Speed is everything
More traffic, more problems.
An increase in web traffic around the BFCM period can strain servers, which makes the web pages slow or unresponsive and sometimes even causes the online store to crash.
Downtime and sluggish website performance mean a loss in revenue on any day of the year. But BFCM is the period when you can least afford them.
When faced with slow-speed eCommerce stores, shoppers won’t hesitate to click away from your competitor. Such events could also result in the erosion of the brand trust you’ve spent years earning from customers expecting a great experience, especially on BFCM.
25 creative examples of Black Friday/Cyber Monday deals
1. Play on scarcity with hourly deals
Less is more in eCommerce.
If you reduce the supply of a product to a certain time period, its value automatically increases. This is the scarcity principle and can be an effective tool during the holiday season.
Offering one deal per hour is a great way to boost spending as well as keep your Black Friday deals fresh.
Let’s say you start with 40% off on everything in the first hour, you can increase it to 50% off on everything in the next hour.
Check out how SportsDirect.com does it.
Don’t forget to use it carefully though so that customers don’t wait for you to increase your discounts.
2. Create a gift guide for the gifting season
Black Friday and Cyber Monday are ideal times for customers to give and receive gifts.
It’s a great way to highlight specific products to customers. You can also divide your products into gifting categories such as Gifts for Him and Gifts for Her.
You can either promote it by creating a gift guide collection or writing a blog post on gifting ideas.
This is how Converse creates an irresistible gift guide for its customers.
You can highlight your gift guide on your homepage or create a separate landing page to get more traffic.
3. Incentivize every purchase with a gift
Want to encourage your customers to purchase more?
Adding gifts for every purchase is a great way to make customers complete the checkout process.
You can make it even more irresistible by adding scarcity to the offer.
See how Sephora does it?
You can add a bit of challenge by creating a purchase limit for availing of the gift.
4. Build curiosity with mystery savings
Add an element of surprise in your Black Friday marketing with mystery savings options.
Scratch cards are a great way to do this. This not only builds anticipation but also makes the shopping experience interactive.
Like Forever 21 does.
You can even use this sort of gamification option to reduce your cart abandonment.
5. Create value by offering charity donations
Most brands nowadays are donating part of their sales to charities.
This can touch upon the personal values of your customers and build stronger brand credibility. This is because it doesn’t simply try to tempt them with discounts.
This is how Chatty Feet make their Black Friday donations fun and true to their brand ethos.
You can add a bit of challenge by creating a purchase limit for availing of the gift.
6. Give a twist to gift cards
Another way to offer a great Black Friday deal is to provide a discount on gift cards.
For example, if you were offering a $60 gift card, you can reduce the price of it to $50 (while keeping the value intact at $60).
This Black Friday marketing idea can help you both take advantage of the gifting season as well as land loyal customers in the long run.
Here’s an example of gift card discounts offered by Visa.
You can also create extend this offer in the form of printable gift cards.
7. Don’t forget your VIP customers
A Black Friday sales idea you can use to attract your loyal customers is by offering VIP discounts.
This especially works if you have a loyalty program or a VIP club. Offering exclusive VIP discounts will make it exclusive for your customers. This will entice them to buy more from you. It can also set off repeat purchases for the rest of the year—improving the customer lifetime value.
This is how Cupcakes and Cashmere offer early bird access and discount to their VIP customers.
You can promote your VIP discount through a Facebook announcement or a landing page
8. Experiment with sitewide discounts
If you think sitewide discounts are passé, you may not be using them right.
Coupled with early bird access, attractive product photography, and compelling copy, it can work wonders.
See how Able does it?
Keep your customer journey in mind when offering sitewide discounts. Instead of a one-size-fits-all, it’s better to balance it out for the right segment at the right time.
9. Consider conditional free shipping
Free shipping is a very important consideration customers make when purchasing. During the Black Friday season, this is a basic offer they expect from brands.
Using conditional free shipping as part of Black Friday marketing helps you in 2 ways: it ensures smaller orders from loss as well as helps you increase your average order value.
Anthropologie offers a conditional free shipping offer after the order value crosses a particular threshold.
Select which products you want to offer free shipping for. For example old inventories that you want some movement in.
10. Mix it up
Make your Black Friday offer more attractive by allowing the customer to choose from the entire site.
You can extend the discounts to all products on your eCommerce site so that customers can mix and match the products.
Check out how Bath and Body Works does it.
You can use this tactic to sell your lower-priced products. For example, you can offer a discount on lower-priced products and bundle them with higher-priced products.
11. Launch special Black Friday collections
If your brand has exclusivity or luxurious appeal to bank on, you can replace discounts with a collection launch.
When your brand itself becomes a status symbol, customers would already be eager to buy your products. Offering discounts may be off-brand and ruin the exclusivity customers may associate your brand with.
In this case, you can use the Black Friday period to launch a special collection. Like Chanel does.
Make sure you create a lot of suspense before the launch to build up the anticipation
12. Bundle it up
Simple packaging changes can spice up your Black Friday marketing a great deal.
Savings are a great incentive for customers. During the holiday season, that’s their primary motivation. If switching from a single to a bundled product will get them a better deal, then they are surely going to go for it.
Introducing bundling for special holiday season products can make them even more attractive.
Here’s how Equa does it.
If you also offer the individual items separately, it can create an even greater perception since the customers can compare the price.
13. Showcase your brand values
A great way to stand out in the crowd is by promoting your unique brand values.
For example, if you stand for sustainable fashion, it may be a great time to communicate this brand value to your visitors. The holiday season is definitely a good time to amplify your brand identity.
Here’s how Fjällräven draws attention to their brand values instead of a sale.
You can even use social media to amplify the message with themed posts and hashtags
14. Always count on urgency to drive sales
There are several tactics to achieve record sales on Black Friday.
Throwing in a bit of urgency can really help speed up the conversion process. For one, it helps build excitement. Moreover, it also gets a lot of people’s attention and improves the visibility of your Black Friday deals.
This is how Game makes their Black Friday offer even more persuasive with a countdown timer.
It’s ideal to keep your countdown timer above the fold and the CTA really close to it.
15. Make your customers feel lucky
A classic giveaway like lucky draw probably never goes out of fashion.
It’s a great idea to encourage your shoppers to purchase and spend more. You may add a purchase option to the lucky draw campaign to motivate both new and old customers.
Here’s how Romwe offers Black Friday lucky draw rewards in the form of points to encourage customers to purchase more.
You can also add a lucky draw campaign to get customer feedback—reasons why they abandoned the cart or any suggestions to the checkout process etc. This can be in exchange for points or credit.
16. Offer conditional discounts
Don’t want to lose sales while offering discounts? You can offer conditional discounts to ensure a minimum order value.
You can configure these discounts based on several factors such as product quantity, a minimum price threshold, location conditions, or bundle conditions.
This is how Kosas offers multiple conditional discounts based on various price thresholds.
You can even personalize the conditional discount for customers based on their purchase history
17. Reward them at checkout with a coupon
Customers love surprises, especially when they get to save right before checkout. Often this prompts them to add more products to the cart.
Offering a coupon at checkout is a win-win for all. It makes the checkout process easier and improves the conversion rate too.
See how Nike offers a compelling coupon to lead customers to checkout? The subtle urgency acts as a cherry on top.
You can make applying the coupon easier by making it apply or copy automatically.
18. Go the BOGO way
A Buy One Get One Free (BOGO) Black Friday deal is a win-win for both customers and retailers.
Around 67% of customers prefer BOGO out of all promotions and 95% have availed of BOGO deals at least once.
It’s a great way to clear out your inventory and yet drive revenue. You don’t have to lower your price even, just offer an item for free along with the one at the original price.
Check out the BOGO offer by Vitamin World.
You can leverage FOMO by setting a deadline for the BOGO sale and encourage shoppers to buy faster
19. Go creative with your Black Friday themes
During the Black Friday holiday season, there are too many brands and too many offers for customers to choose from.
To stand out from the crowd, you may want to add specific themes to your promotions.
Like how Tarte runs promotions with the catchy title Feel-Good Friday.
You can extend the creative promotion themes to coupons and special deal periods too. Like in the above example, Tarte has used Cyber Week and the coupon code as CYBER.
20. Reward referrals
If you’re looking for customer retention long after Black Friday, Cyber Monday, or the holiday season has ended, you can try referral reward programs.
Instead of just one-time sales, you can let earn more new shoppers with the help of your loyal customers.
Apart from landing amazing discounts to your customers, you can also harp on their desire to share their purchases and savings with their friends.
Here’s how Feelunique creates a personalized referral program for its customers.
You can add any level of personalization to the campaign starting from naming your customers to recommending relevant products for their close ones.
21. Offer something more valuable than discounts
Another unique Black Friday marketing idea that you can toy with is completely taking an about-turn from discounts or coupons.
Instead, offer them something more valuable—gift them an experience.
You can take a cue from Barnes and Noble’s Black Friday marketing campaign. It offers something that’s valuable to their target audience—signed editions of books.
If you’re planning to build an exclusive brand that doesn’t want to be diluted with discounts, you can choose this Black Friday marketing idea.
22. Make it interactive with a discount wheel
Gamify your Black Friday campaigns by adding a roulette or Spin the Wheel contest. Interactivity is a great way to hook customers saturated with similar-looking offers.
It’s a great way to show off your brand vibe and make customers return for the experience even when you’re not offering discounts.
Like TravelUp does.
Make sure to add a bit of FOMO to the campaign otherwise shoppers may not be as inclined to interact.
23. Offer category-specific discounts
Not all products are made the same. Similarly, your discounts shouldn’t also be the same for all your products.
Add a bit of personalization by customizing your discounts for specific products and categories to make them individually attractive to shoppers.
Like Target does in this example.
You can also ensure further visibility by extending the campaigns for week or a month.
24. Don’t limit your campaigns to just Black Friday
While Black Friday is still the crowd-puller, however, you don’t need to limit your campaign to just that day.
You can easily extend your campaign till Cyber Monday or for the entire month. Chances are that the competition may be extremely high on the main day since many brands will be competing.
You may get a better scope of deals when the rush drops. See how Mud Pie extends their Black Friday sale to include the weekend too?
You can also offer early-bird discounts and start to grab the market even before Black Friday begins.
25. Make your offers email-exclusive
If your customers have already signed up for your emails, then chances are that they will be interested in checking out your Black Friday deals too.
This is ideal for customers who are in the consideration stage. You can successfully push them into the purchase stage with exclusive Black Friday email offers.
See how Kate Spade makes its email subscribers feel special with its copy and exclusive offer.
You can make the campaign more effective by adding a website banner with the offer so more visitors would be interested in signing up for your emails