Your Ecommerce Checklist For Black Friday

What Senior Paid Search Executive Divya doesn’t know about digital marketing isn’t worth knowing, so we asked her to compile all her knowledge to help brands prepare for one of the busiest shopping periods of the year. 

Quarter 4 is notoriously the busiest season for E-Commerce business, and there’s a day that’s perhaps even busier than Christmas Day itself. It’s the one particular date that should be circled in red, that’s right, the ominous Black Friday. If shopping is like a sport, then Black Friday is the ultimate showdown. When you’ve watched enough videos of the carnage that takes place as we have – for those who haven’t, you’re welcome – when people are kicking one another in the shins over the final kettle on the shelf, the name suddenly seems appropriately dark.

So with 27th November almost being upon us, if you have not sorted out your digital marketing strategy then it’s time to get organised. Here are our top 8 tips for staying in the game this sale season.

1. The Early Bird Catches The Worm

A sand timer counts down

It may seem premature to start preparing for Black Friday now when it occurs in late November, but the earlier you start planning, the more you will thank yourself when the day comes. You need to think about what strategy you are going to implement and the products you want to promote during this period. The more decisions you make now, the more time you have to make tweaks or changes before the big weekend.

2. Boost Your Ad Spend

A piggy bank is stuffed with money

You need to increase your marketing spend during Black Friday weekend. This is so important, and something brands can easily forget. If you want results, you need to invest otherwise your competitors will steal your market share. We recommend forecasting at least a 15% increase in overall budget from last year’s Black Friday/Cyber Monday period. You will see your cost per clicks (CPCs) inflate higher than usual, but this is expected. If you are running Facebook advertising, it is best to increase your media spend a few days before Black Friday. This way, you will be giving the platform enough time to optimise for conversions.

3. Avoid A Traffic Jam

Google Analytics show website stats

With Black Friday and Cyber Monday being the biggest online sale of the year, this means there will be loads of users accessing your website at one time. This high volume of traffic may have an impact on your website page speed and in extreme cases, cause your website to crash. Some Black Friday casualties of the past include big names like Debenhams and Amazon. 

Online tools such as Google PageSpeed Insights are great for checking the load time of your website ahead of Black Friday. Running a simple CRO check like making sure your image file sizes are not too big is also important. Believe it or not, large image file sizes are often the culprits for low page speed. Try and get the right balance between compressing the images and maintaining their quality.

🔥 Hot Tip 🔥

Stretch your Black Friday sale over a longer period of time, like running a pre-Black Friday week long sale. This way you will be able to spread the demand and maintain a healthy site performance. 

4. Offer A Site-Wide Discount

A window display in a shop shows discounts

One of the simplest strategies is to implement a site wide discount code or promo. If you are a small business then consider a 10% or 20% Off promo, or be very selective with the products you promote. Alternatively, you could copy some other retailers and agree to take a loss during Black Friday with big discounts on your products. This means that you can acquire more new customers, which is more beneficial as a long term strategy.

5. Don’t Forget Your Best Sellers

Google Analytics shows returning visitors to a site

This strategy is the opposite of trying to shift all of your old stock at a discounted rate. Making the most of your best-selling products is a great strategy to implement at any time of the year, but especially during Black Friday. Look to identify your most popular products and create a buzz around them by implementing limited-time discounts and offers. You can find your best sellers through Google Analytics or even your internal CRM system. Once you know them, plan your promotions.

6. Keep Your Eyes On The Inventory

A paper ledger shows product inventory

It is important you’re on top of your game when it comes to inventory management. The last thing you want is to sell the same product twice, or even sell a product that you don’t actually have. This will potentially be a customer service nightmare. You need to meet expectations and manage your stock levels effectively.

7. Upsell & Cross-Sell

An example of online upselling

Black Friday is the perfect opportunity for you to upsell and cross-sell products hence increasing your customer’s basket value. A common example of upselling is when you’re at Nando’s and they ask ‘would you like chips with that?’. You could buy a Nando’s main on its own but for a little extra you could get some tasty chips to go with it.

You can use this concept in E-Commerce by setting up a ‘you might also like’ or ‘related products’ section on your product page. 

8. Exclusive Newsletter Sign Up Promos

A woman browses social media on her phone

You can offer an exclusive Black Friday discount to customers who sign up to the newsletter. This is a clever way to generate sales while also building your email list. This list is yours to keep and can be used in future to build customer loyalty.

It’s clear that Black Friday is no longer a single-day event — it’s a week-long extravaganza of deals, promotions, and online commerce. If you can execute the strategy well, you will see a huge sales boost, while also acquiring loads of new customers that you can then cross-sell to over the Christmas period and beyond.

If you haven’t started preparing, then reach out to seventy7 today and we will take care of your Black Friday woes. You can also download our white paper which details how you can prepare your business for Black Friday. 

People rush to get discounted products on Black Friday

And finally, if you’re planning a trip to the city or your local shopping centre on Black Friday, you might want to take your shin pads…

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