Black Friday is almost here, which means that Black Friday ecommerce has already started its countdown. Year after year, Black Friday ecommerce gets bigger and bigger, showing no signs of slowing down.
This is a big day for shoppers and businesses alike, but for businesses specifically, it’s a little bit more difficult. There’s a lot of preparation that goes into hosting these massive sales that we see online, and if anything goes wrong, then a business can lose out on a ton of sales.
Last year, in 2019, Americans alone spent over $11 billion on Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday together. These days, shoppers are in a spending mood, and it would be a shame for any business to miss out.
Today, we’re going to go over everything that you need to know for Black Friday ecommerce shopping so that you can avoid any mishaps when the big day finally gets here.
Black Friday e-commerce
For ecommerce, sales and strategies are a little different than the traditional methods of brick and mortar shops. Instead of foot traffic increase, we’re talking about website traffic. If one tiny thing goes wrong in your ecommerce store, it’s not as simple as switching to a different cash register. You have to be prepared.
Since more and more people are shopping almost exclusively online, it’s good to have a plan well in advance. The reason a plan is so important is because online shopping makes up a significant portion of Black Friday sales.
No matter what industry you’re in, people will look online for the best deals. It’s faster and far more convenient to browse the web instead of driving from place to place. With that said, it’s a good idea to come up with a Black Friday ecommerce strategy.
Black Friday ecommerce strategy
Depending on the industry, there are a number of things a business can do to really nail their Black Friday ecommerce strategy. But strategy aside, there are a few things you need to know going into this.
Here’s what you need to know:
Start strategizing months in advance
Many experts suggest you start planning your Black Friday ecommerce strategy at least 6 months in advance. While that may seem like a long time, you never know what can happen between when you start and when Black Friday arrives.
Expect tough competition
In general, CPM for Facebook and other advertising platforms can be high. But, especially around Black Friday, it gets really tough. The best strategy would be to set aside a decent budget, especially for advertising for Black Friday ecommerce.
Budgets need to be higher
The best strategy for the Black Friday ecommerce budget is to budget on the higher end. Black Friday is a huge opportunity for sales and profits, so if there’s any time to go over the normal budget, this is it.
Black Friday e-commerce ideas
Of course, the ideas listed above are just some general guidelines that anyone can follow. Those 3 points are what you can expect going into Black Friday ecommerce, but there are a few strategies that you can follow to get the edge going into the holiday season in general.
Check your website speeds
There’s a lot of competition online. One factor that could make someone choose your website over another is how fast the website loads. With the potential massive increase in site traffic, site speed is a big deal.
Throughout the year, website speed is fairly important. After all, people shop online for convenience. If website speeds get in the way of them finding a good deal fast, then they might abandon your website altogether.
Improving your website speed might call for a simplification of design, or a complete redesign. There are plenty of things that you can do to make your website speeds faster, so it’s highly recommended that you look into those before Black Friday ecommerce really kicks off.
Make sure you’re using the right platform
For Black Friday ecommerce, you want to make sure that you’re using the right platform to host your website. Depending on your needs, there are plenty of options out there. One of the most popular, however, is Magento. Platforms like Magento can be extremely helpful, and will even send cart abandonment emails when a customer leaves their online shopping cart unattended for too long.
Whatever platform you use, you’ll want to make sure it has everything you need. Is it customizable? Then perhaps you can make changes for Black Friday. Is it SEO optimized? Then maybe you can focus on some keywords to really draw in a crowd.
These questions and many more should be asked in the days leading up to Black Friday. That being said, it’s best to be ahead of schedule when it comes to the biggest day for shopping each year.
Test and fix any bugs or website changes in advance
One of the worst mistakes an ecommerce retailer can make is making changes right before Black Friday. If you plan on making any changes whatsoever, it’s best to do them months in advance so that you can be sure they work properly.
Another big issue is leaving potentially threatening bugs unfixed. If you are aware of any bug that can potentially prevent customers from experiencing your website and brand to the fullest, then it needs to be addressed.
Black Friday marketing strategy
For marketing specifically, there are a number of strategies that, if done well, can produce some impressive results for Black Friday ecommerce.
Create a prospecting campaign
Prospecting campaigns are fueled by very large sets of robust data that highlight customer intent. The data is gathered from a number of sources including social media, online publishers, and advertising sites. This data is heavily analyzed to identify customers or “prospects” that are most likely going to like your brand.
Using a campaign like this is common practice for a lot of businesses, but much like the other strategies during Black Friday ecommerce, the budget should be increased.
Again, retargeting is a major part of many marketing campaigns, but it’s even more important for Black Friday ecommerce. The reason for this is because these customers are already familiar with your brand. They know exactly what to expect, and are less hesitant to buy again.
With all of those factors coming into play, if you throw in a good discount, they’re the most likely to make a purchase.
Audience retargeting isn’t as easy as simply finding people who have already bought from your ecommerce store and emailing them. It’s all about timing and the right offer. There are plenty of tactics and strategies for this topic. You have to create custom audiences based on their preferences, site activity, and so on.
Using Facebook Custom Audiences and tying it to your CRM through LeadsBridge is by far the easiest and most effective way to retarget for Black Friday ecommerce.
With Black Friday ecommerce, it’s very important that you optimize your omnichannel marketing strategy. Omnichannel marketing should be a main focus of your Black Friday marketing strategy because you will want to reach as many people as possible in order to really capitalize on the opportunity.
At LeadsBridge, we have gone over how to really optimize your omnichannel marketing campaigns in one of our whitepapers. It’s free to download, so we highly recommend checking it out.
Conclusions and takeaways
With Black Friday always on the minds of ecommerce shops, it’s easy to understand why that day is so important. There are many tactics and strategies that have been incredibly successful for some businesses, but not so much for others. The key is to give yourself plenty of time to test them out for yourself.
In fact, giving yourself plenty of time to plan is a common theme with any Black Friday ecommerce strategy or plan. A successful Black friday campaign needs to be set up months in advance, and rock solid when the day comes.
Another common theme when it comes to Black Friday ecommerce is raising budgets. This makes a lot of sense when you consider that businesses can increase their profits on that day by double, triple, or even more. The more time (and money) spent in preparation, the bigger the potential outcome.