Hello, November! Suddenly the end of the year has crept up on us yet again and Black Friday and Cyber Monday are right around the corner. Are you prepared for this top eCommerce holiday or does the thought of it start stressing you out? Take a breath, my friend, as we are going to pour some knowledge into you that will not only ease your worries but also arm your business with a surefire Black Friday marketing strategy that will maximize your sales this holiday season.
What Is Black Friday and Cyber Monday?
Black Friday has been a huge marketing tactic since the 1980s and each year it seems to grow in popularity and demand. Black Friday falls on the day after Thanksgiving, this year that day is November 26th. With less than 30 days until Christmas, it is one of the most popular days for folks to shop gifts and make personal upgrades for a fraction of the cost.
Cyber Monday is a relatively newer term, coined around 2005. This is the Monday following Black Friday that focuses solely on online sales. While Black Friday has the longevity of shoppers, Cyber Monday is nothing to snuff at. In 2020 alone, shoppers spent close to $10.8 billion on online purchases.
Are you ready to capitalize on American consumers’ favorite holidays? We will answer some of your burning questions surrounding these events and help you craft a successful Black Friday marketing strategy.
When To Build Your Black Friday Marketing Strategy and Begin Advertising
The holiday season can seem like whir for shoppers and businesses alike and time is of the essence when it comes to planning your Black Friday marketing strategy. Before you dive headfirst into launching new campaigns, make sure you set some clear goals for what you want to achieve with your Black Friday ad campaign. Consider what audiences you are trying to reach, what platforms you are going to use, how to make your ads stand out among the crowd, and how to create enticing but still profitable deals.
Preparing your Black Friday marketing strategy usually takes place a few weeks before the actual shopping holiday. Consider your inventory, what items you want to move quickly, what items are popular to your target market, and what items are going to have the best bang for their buck (even at reduced prices). Once you have your goals and inventory in line, you will want to start building and launching your ad campaigns at different intervals.
Some businesses profit from marketing Black Friday deals before the actual day, using a chunk of November to markdown different items at different times. Some businesses hold all the goodies until the actual day. It is up to you and which route best fits your brand and business model. Remember, don’t bite off more than you can chew, especially if you are a smaller business. Upholding customer satisfaction is still of the utmost importance. As the adage says, under-promise and over-deliver to keep your customer’s content. Keep your staff, inventory, and time constraints in mind when building your Black Friday marketing strategy.
How To Prepare and Launch a Successful Black Friday Marketing Strategy
Black Friday and the weeks leading up to it can hold some of the best sales tactics and revenue bumps for your business. However, to reap these rewards, it’s important to have the best Black Friday marketing strategy in place. In the following sections, we will discuss the most important elements of a holiday marketing campaign and what items need to be in place for your shoppers and business to have the best Black Friday and/or Cyber Monday yet.
Enhance Landing Pages & Optimize Your Website
Your website is your shopfront, if not the entire shop itself. This is where you make a good first impression or a welcoming home to previous customers. You want your shopper’s eCommerce experience to be as smooth and easy as possible, from browsing your Black Friday deals, reading product descriptions, adding items to their cart, to checking out. Run through the process yourself and troubleshoot any areas where a potential customer may be bogged down or abandon their cart (or the site entirely).
As for the website layout, you want it to be clean, easily browsable, and not too crowded. Give your shoppers space to look through the options with ease, as they would in a normal store, without too many pop-ups or other distractions. Sweep them away into their shopping experience as if your storefront is the only site on the web that has exactly what they want and what they need. A good Black Friday marketing strategy begins with a user-friendly website.
Next, consider the mobile experience on your site. A well-functioning and beautiful desktop design is always a good thing but in 2020, HubSpot observed that 75% of shoppers used their mobile device for their entire Black Friday shopping experience from product research, to price comparison, to the final purchase. It is an absolute must that your website’s mobile experience, as well as ad campaigns, are designed for mobile users.
Lastly, you want to make sure your site is properly optimized for the keywords you are trying to win this Black Friday. Remember, SEO doesn’t happen overnight so you want to make sure your content is in place a while before Black Friday commences so searchers and crawlers can find your pages in time and build rankings on search engine result pages (SERPs). A successful Black Friday marketing strategy takes time and research but having a well-performing website is key.[bctt tweet=”Preparing your Black Friday marketing strategy usually takes place a few weeks before the actual shopping holiday. Consider your inventory, what items you want to move quickly, what items are popular to your target market, and what items are going to have the best bang for their buck…” username=”ThatCompanycom”]
Reach New Audiences with Paid Ad Campaigns
You can reach more potential customers using PPC (pay-per-click) ad campaigns. Do remember though that competition is intense when it comes to paid ads around Black Friday and Cyber Monday. You should carefully plan and execute your PPC campaigns. Once you have your budget set, here are some tips to best increase your exposure with your Black Friday paid ad campaigns:
- Plan Your Keywords. After conducting extensive keyword research, make sure you plan your keywords thoughtfully and intentionally. You don’t want to waste your budget on keywords that aren’t going to convert. Also, consider the price per click that each keyword averages and account for those costs accordingly to best spread out your ad budget.
- Run Ads Early & Later than Black Friday. We suggest that you launch your ad campaigns earlier than Black Friday and Cyber Monday as well as run them past those dates to reduce your price-per-click as well as reduce your competition around those keywords.
- Choose Your Audience Wisely. While reaching new customers is great, when it comes to the high prices associated with PPC around Black Friday and Cyber Monday, you want to carefully select your target audience to yield the highest ROI (return on investment). Consider re-engaging previous customers as well as re-targeting audiences that have previously visited your site in a set time frame i.e. the past 90 days.
- Experiment if You Have the Budget. If your budget allows it, consider experimenting with different platforms and audience selections to increase your exposure and build brand awareness.
Not sure where to begin when building your PPC Black Friday marketing strategy? Or perhaps you don’t have the tools or experience to launch a truly successful Cyber Monday paid ad campaign? Learn more about our white label PPC services and how we can help your business this holiday season.
The Power of Social Media Marketing
Social media has a vast potential reach to your current audience as well as reaching new customers. The best Black Friday marketing strategy for your social media profiles is to plan. Create a content calendar geared specifically to boost attention around your Black Friday deals and steals. This will help you build brand awareness as well as encourage engagement with your followers.
Here are some ideas for a successful Black Friday marketing strategy utilizing your social media platforms:
- Create Contests. Whether it’s giveaways, raffles, or competitions, make sure you outline your prerequisites for your followers to adhere to, such as: following your account, liking and commenting on the post, sharing the post, tagging friends, and so on. This will increase engagement around your social profile as well as spread your reach.
- Hash Tagging. Use social media’s greatest tool to your advantage: hashtags. Create posts utilizing hashtags at the end of the caption that best describes your post. Make sure they are on brand, not too vague but also not too specific. Make sure you also engage with other posts that use that hashtag to increase the visibility of your post. Using a hashtag is all well and good but you want to make sure other accounts that are using the same hashtag get a little attention from your profile as well.
- Include a Link in Your Bio. If you have a specific section of your site dedicated to your Black Friday deals, make sure to include a link in your profile bio so it’s easy for your followers to find your amazing deals. If your whole website is marked down, link to the home page or specific area you want your followers to land.
- Build a Content Calendar. As previously mentioned, make sure you build a content calendar with regular posts about your Black Friday and Cyber Monday promotions. While you should be utilizing a well-strategized content calendar year-round, this is the time to put one in place if you don’t already. Stay consistent with your posts to keep your audience’s attention and engagement high.
- Set Up Shop. Most social media platforms now offer a section where you can build a shop right inside their platform, so the user doesn’t have to leave their app and go to your site. Take time to set up a shop on Instagram, Facebook, etc. to increase your sales with in-app purchases.
We hope these social media tips are helpful when creating your Black Friday marketing strategy. Need assistance with your social media presence? Learn more about our white label social media management.
Boost Visibility with Email Campaigns
Email campaigns can be an effective Black Friday marketing strategy if executed properly. Around this time of year, inboxes everywhere are flooded with enticing offers and hot deals. You need your email blast to stand out in the crowd! Here are a few tips on how to make your email campaign shine and boost your visibility:
- Start with a Solid Email List. All year, you should be enticing your website visitors and social media audiences to sign up for your email campaigns. Whether this is social posts about the unique offers they will receive by signing up, easy-to-find forms on your website, or pop-ups once the user has been on your site for a set amount of time, you want users to sign up so you can stay in touch.
- Powerful Subject Lines. If you want to increase your open rate, make sure you are utilizing all 25-30 characters of your subject line to its max potential. When combating for your reader’s attention from all the other emails, you want your subject line to be to the point, engaging, and appealing enough for them to click on your email. A good option for Black Friday and Cyber Monday is to include special deals, promotions, or discounts in your subject line and email.
- A/B Tests. While you should be doing A/B tests all year round, consider doing them as well with your subject lines when you do email blasts. This will help you hone in on what captures your target market’s interest.
- Elegant Email Design. Keep your email copy brief and to the point. You don’t need to exceed 150 words on your email campaign, and you want the design elements to be beautiful as well as engaging. Consider your image choices carefully and only use the best options to increase your click-through rate (CTR).
Entice Purchases with Descriptive Content Marketing
While the pressure around Black Friday and Cyber Monday is “Buy! Buy! Buy!” remember that your shoppers are less likely to make indulgent and impulsive decisions. While in a store, there is the “buy it or lose it” mentality, online shopping loses some of the inherent pressure of “limited quantity”. If one website runs out of stock, they may be able to find it in stock somewhere else and even perhaps for a better price.
This is where content marketing comes into play. You want to be descriptive about your products. A vast number of Black Friday and Cyber Monday shoppers spend a chunk of time researching their potential purchases, scouring the web for the best deal for the best product. Utilize content marketing as a Black Friday marketing strategy that will put you ahead of the rest. Here are some tips on what to include in your content marketing:
- Utilize Choice Keywords. Make sure when you are writing your product descriptions and titles, you are incorporating target keywords that your market will be looking for come Black Friday so they will land right at your site from SERPs. You want to be doing this year-round to enhance your SEO efforts, so know that while a few weeks before Black Friday is a good time to begin, it may not gain the long-term traction needed for SEO to reap the benefits.
- Address Commonly Asked Questions. Get ahead of the game and answer commonly asked questions about your brand, products, shipping, and billing procedures. Whether it’s on a Q&A page or each product page, giving your potential customers all the information upfront may help them make a quicker and more informed buying decision, helping with sales as well as preventing future customer service issues.
- Create Gift Guides. Another content marketing tactic you can utilize during this shopping season is creating gift guides. People often know what they want to purchase for themselves but if you give them unique ideas for what to buy the in-laws, cousins, or children, it may lead to greater time on your site, more items added to the cart, and a shopper that feels like they got their money’s worth of Christmas gifts.
- Add User-Generated Content to the Mix. Make sure to include product reviews, testimonies, stories, and end-product pictures. This adds a personal feel to your inventory and relieves some worry that online shoppers carry, “Will I be getting exactly what is advertised?”.
Incorporating some of these content marketing strategies will not only help your online sales during the Black Friday and Cyber Monday season but also year-round, so we encourage you to dedicate some time to these efforts.
Troubleshoot the Check Out Process and Reduce Cart Abandonment
While this may be the last headline we discuss, this is honestly one of the hottest topics to talk about: Cart Abandonment. Those words alone can send shivers down the spine of any eCommerce business owner. Have no fear, there are many ways that you can minimize or completely cut out your cart abandonment issues with a Black Friday marketing strategy and a well-adjusted checkout process.
One of the main reasons carts are abandoned is unexpected costs associated with the check-out process. No one, I repeat no one, likes surprise fees or unexpected costs when it’s time to put in those credit card numbers. Rather than including service fees or shipping costs, you can include these as “free” and incorporate those costs into your product prices, to begin with, or you can forgo those costs altogether if it’s not biting too big into your profits.
You can include unexpected promotions or deals in the checkout process to entice them further to finish the checkout process. If you do forgo the fees and shipping costs, make sure those line items are still there but struck through, so they see how much they are saving when shopping on-site as well as how much your business cares about customer satisfaction. This can encourage customer loyalty as well as increase the number of return customers in the future.
We Wish You Luck with Your Black Friday Marketing Strategy
We hope you found this guideline helpful, and you implement some of these techniques and marketing opportunities so you can strike when the iron is hot. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or newbie at online marketing, we are always here to help. As the leading white label marketing agency, it is our pleasure to help businesses learn, grow, and succeed. Happy Shopping Holidays, from all of us here at That Company, and may your Black Friday marketing strategy generate big returns for your business.