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The concept of Black Friday and Cyber Monday are native to America. Black Friday falls on 27th November this year (the day after Thanksgiving) and Cyber Monday on 30th November. The history of the day dates back to the 1950s. Friday after Thanksgiving naturally became a holiday and most Americans used it for shopping. This trend made it a profitable day for most retailers so they started calling it a black day in their books. Later they started providing offers to attract more customers and named it as ‘Black Friday’. Cyber Monday is relatively new and it is to target the crowd who wouldn’t want to spend hours in a checkout lane to grab an special.

Retailers around the globe have adopted this strategy to get a fresh start to the shopping season by attracting more customers & a hopeful sales boost.

In Australia, many predict that the event of this 4-day sale is going to be the biggest sales event of the year surpassing Boxing Day. Forecasts suggest that the sales volume will hit $3-5 billion this year. It will be a golden opportunity for many businesses who suffered from the pandemic to have a head start. But, the pandemic has changed the shopper behaviour from in-store to online. Every seller should expect a Cyber Friday instead of a Black Friday this year and focus more on eCommerce to make the most of it.

To confirm that the hype is real, we looked into Google trends and the results are exciting. There's a nationwide trend for the term black Friday that started weeks ago and some knew precisely where they most likely were going to get the best deals i.e "JB Hi-Fi Black Friday".

Black Friday & Cyber Monday strategy guide.
1. Consider it an opportunity for customer acquisition.

The first thing that comes to mind with the term Black Friday is unrealistic offers that big retailers offer to their customers. If you are a small to midsize business, you couldn't be able to afford such giveaways without slashing your margins. Because of this reason, most sellers ;

  1. Ignore Black Friday
  2. Offer less attractive deals by worrying about their margins.
  3. Keep artificial prices till the end of November to make their deals look attractive.

A smarter approach would be to think beyond the sales volume and margin

  1. Every visitor you attract on Black Friday could become a loyal customer.
  2. Your offers could be priced at zero margins on Black Friday, but think about the lifetime value of any customers you acquire.
  3. Think of it as an opportunity to get rid of old stock.
  4. Consider increasing your email list by making visitors subscribe to your Black Friday deals.
  5. Integrate Facebook Pixel and Google pixel to your website so that you can retarget and resell to visitors throughout the holiday season and the seasons to come (e.g. end of financial year)
  6. Make sure your website is ready to handle heavy traffic. (The Online Portal experienced ~2.8 million visitors to their website on Black Friday last year)
  7. Expect a different audience than just the tech-savvy youth this year, make your offers attractive to a diverse group
2. Offer smart deals.

The reason for the name Black Friday is because it's an opportunity for sellers to convert their books from a red state to a black state. But this year, consumers won't make many irrational purchase decisions and will expect offers on more useful items. Sellers have to think smart when deciding their offer strategy:

  1. Tresholdbase shopping offers can guarantee a minimum cart value.
  2. Creating bundle offers with less number of fast-moving items will be a better way to get rid of old stock.
  3. Amazon has a strategy of offering their gateway products with attractive discounts. They know that once a consumer purchases such a product, they will return in future.
  4. Brands like Apple who value their price integrity won't reduce prices on Black Friday. Instead, they offer gift cards for purchases you make during Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
  5. Coupons and loyalty programs are also great strategies to resell and get more registrations for your loyalty program
  6. You can consider more creative approaches like donating to a Covid 19 charity or other social causes. It would increase your brand image as well.
3. Learn how to create online enthusiasm.

Seasonal shopping is more of an experience for many shoppers. When purchasing happens online, you can't create the same seasonal vibe as in-store. Also, your sales staff can't influence the buying decisions of an online shopper. You need to come up with online strategies to create more conversions and increase the cart value. Potential solutions are:

  1. Hourly (Black Friday) specials is a strategy that you can try to make visitors revisit your website and to create uncertainty in their mind between grabbing available deals vs waiting for a better one.
  2. You can set up pop messages to act as a virtual salesperson to understand the exit intention of the shoppers and keep them engaged.
  3. Since you can't check product quality online, offering a flexible return policy is a good strategy.
  4. Black Friday doesn't mean that all of your stock needs to go on offer. You can limit the number of items available for each offer thus, create some urgency by doing so.
  5. Express shipping and free shipping for a threshold can increase conversions and average order value.
  6. Pre-planned email campaigns to convert abandoned carts is important. You can simply extend the offer of their cart until Cyber Monday or you can send them an exclusive offer.
  7. Social proof is important to tell customers that you have the best deals and many others are interested in them. Small popup messages like "10 others are looking at this product right now" or 32 have purchased this within the last 24h" will encourage conversions.

On a side note, Adobe has forecasted seasonal trends by using their AI (Adobe Sensei). They expect a YoY seasonal sales boost of +107% for SMBs this season. Black Friday would be the ideal start for your seasonal success. Maytech hopes that the above guide will help you come up with a better offer strategy for the entire shopping season.

How Maytech can help

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