12 Tips to prepare your eCommerce store for Black Friday & Cyber Monday 2019

12 Tips to prepare your eCommerce store for Black Friday & Cyber Monday 2019

Black Friday and Cyber Monday (also known as BFCM) are just a short while away, meaning it's time to set your business up for success to get a piece of the pie. In 2018, BFCM brought in $13.9 billion in sales which was the most successful to date. What makes the $13.9 billion shocking is that it only accounts for 2 days in November; BFCM have become a kick-off to the holiday season. 

Black Friday and Cyber Monday (BFCM) 2018 Success

Before diving into what you can do to prepare your eCommerce busy for the BIG events, let's look at how successful last year BFCM were according to data from Adobe Analytics:

  • Cyber Monday brought in $7.9 billion in online sales, a growth of 19.3% year over year (YoY).

  • Black Friday brought in $6.2 billion in online sales, a growth of 23.6% YoY.

  • Thanksgiving Day brought in $3.7 billion in online sales, a growth of 28% YoY (Adobe predicted only an 16.5% increase YoY).

Keep in mind that leveraging platforms that already have a community, like Amazon and Etsy, would be beneficial because this way your business will have every opportunity to capture sales even though it might not be on your actual site. Never leave money on the table! 

  1. Craft an irresistible Black Friday and Cyber Monday (BFCM) offer.

    • Build suspense around your offer well in advance, getting the customer intrigued before via social media, email marketing and ads

    • You can also go further with this by creating “Pre-BFCM” offers

  2. Organize your upcoming sale promotions.

    • Either having a promotions calendar or a note with how to schedule your promotions (ie. when to send the email and when to post on Instagram) are helpful

  3. Run a “share this” contest.

    • These campaigns are a great way to drum up leads that you can market to at a later date while getting sales for BFCM

    • Use a site like http://giveawation.com/ to create an Instagram contest and choose a winner based off the criteria you want (ie. like this post, tag a friend, etc)

  4. Offer a free (or reduced-price) product, or free shipping.

    • Buy One Get One (BOGO) deals, like buy 2 and get the 3rd free, is a great way to increase sales volume

    • Create daily deals to spread out and/or test different offers

    • Make your offer into a game (“Gamifying” your offer), like a special email discount coupon

    • Use free shipping (a HUGE opportunity to incentivize more sales) to reduce the “barrier to entry”

    • Create promo codes to offer a discount off your entire site or select products

    • Give your loyal customers a special discount (they’re most likely to spend in your store anyways)

  5. Create a newsletter-exclusive Cyber Monday deal to boost newsletter signups.

    • Encourage them to subscribe in order to receive BFCM coupons

  6. Advertise based on your location and use digital platforms for maximum reach.

    • Monetize your Instagram following by creating Facebook Ads

    • Maximize the power of search by creating Google (Search) Ads

  7. Upsell and add-on.

    • Always offer or showcase another product that's a part of the BFCM sale to upsell to the customer

  8. Make sure your website is mobile-friendly.

    • Most sales happen via mobile, so the smoother your customer journey is on mobile the more sales you'll get

    • Using Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test is a great way to test mobile compatibility to see how compatible your eCommerce site is on various devices - think mobile first

  9. Retarget past visitors and customers.

    • If you already set up a Facebook Pixel on your store, this is prime time you use it. Pixels allows your product or content to reach people who have forgotten about your store, now your product will be placed right in front of them.

  10. Make sure your site is able to handle BFCM (technically)

    When Cyber Monday rolls around, you’ll want your site to be responsive, mobile-compatible, and most importantly, up and running

    Use a reliable eCommerce host like Shopify

    Test your site speed on Think with Google

    If you’re afraid of some crazy volume (aim for the sky), you can use Pager Duty to help with uptime (they have a 14-free trial)

We suggest starting your promotions at the end of September into the beginning of October to create awareness for the special sale offers that will be available for BFCM.

  1. How to promote for BFCM

  • Write your email marketing copy and schedule them in advance (using a service like MailChimp), early - the best days to send emails are Tuesdays, Thursdays and Wednesdays; with the best times being around 6 am, 10 am, 2pm and 8 pm to midnight

  • Craft social media content (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest)

  • Write your blog copy and grab visuals

  • Create banners for both your website and email campaigns

  • One of the most important things people tend to forget to do is announce “order deadlines”, so make sure your customers know the most important dates (ex. to receive your order before Christmas be sure to place your order by December 10th)

Once Black Friday and Cyber Monday ends, the holiday shopping season is in full effect. You can leverage all the leads generated during Cyber Week to drum up sales to finish Q4 strong. 

Don't leave money on the table this year (2019), especially since your customer is only a click away. 

Let's get sh*t done!