Black Friday (and Cyber Monday) are just around the corner, and that means you have a lot to do.
Hopefully you caught our article last week on when to start preparing your Ecommerce business for Black Friday (a week ago). If you didn’t, don’t worry. You can still get your website ready in time. You just need to make sure your website, your strategy and your marketing are ready. Don’t worry, we have a ten-point checklist below to make it easier for you to make sure you don’t forget anything.
10 Things to Ensure your Ecommerce store is ready for Black Friday
Zero-Gain sales item
A holiday marketing strategy that has been hugely successful for a lot of brands is planning a zero-gain sales item.
The idea is that you choose a particular item (or even a few of them) to sell at a crazy low, attention-grabbing price. This item is called a “Doorbuster”. It grabs your customers attention and pulls them to your website.
When they hit the landing page with the product on it the real marketing begins. This is where you will sell them your less marked-down items. You can do this by promoting related products, or your popular, featured items on the landing page alongside your sale item.
You can also offer them deals such as, buy X and pay 10% less for Y.
The whole idea with the zero-gain sale item is to draw your customers into the website. Once there it’s up to you to make sure they find plenty of other things they want to buy.
Cart Recovery Strategy
The average cart abandonment rate is 68%. While there will always be people who are just browsing and abandon items in their carts, you want to try and get as many of those people as possible to come back and complete the transaction.
Seeing as Black Friday is only one day, you will want to get them back even faster than usual.
Being an online marketer you hopefully already have a cart recovery plan in place. If not, now is the time to implement one. If you do, you need to make sure everything is on fast-forward for Black Friday.
Make sure the Emails that go out to abandoned cart shoppers go out straight away on Black Friday. You also want to adjust your Email copy to create a sense of urgency, and make sure they know they need to act quickly to make use of the Black Friday discounts and promotional offers.
You should also embed a Facebook Pixel on your Ecommerce store, and boost it by running targeted Facebook ads that focus on shoppers who with abandoned carts. This will make sure that they see the items they left behind in their social media feeds, constantly bringing your products back into their thoughts.
Facebook pixels have been found to dramatically improve abandoned cart recovery rates.
Just remember that if you do make any changes, you should track the data and analytics so that you can analyse it later.
You probably already have wish lists implemented on your website. If you don’t, make sure you get it done as soon as possible.
Shoppers start thinking ab out making holiday purchases from October onwards, and this is also the time when they start to drop hints to family and friends about what they want.
Not only that, but when you have a shopper’s wish list you can alert them when their wish list items are on sale, and Email them what deals you have in connection with their items.
Wishlists also serve the practical task of simply helping shoppers to come back and find something later. Shoppers are not always ready to make a purchase right away. Often, they compare deals and return later. If they do, you want it to be as easy as possible for them to find the items they are interested in.
Best of all, wish lists work hand in hand with your Facebook pixel to keep remarketing the exact items a shopper is interested in, right in their news feed.
Update User Experience
Make sure your website’s UX (User eXperience) is flawless.
You need to test it, and you need to get your web developer to try and break it. They will quickly pick up any faults.
You want a website that is user-friendly, invites shoppers in, makes it easy for them to check out, and easy to navigate. Everything about your Ecommerce website should lead your shopper down the sales funnel and through the checkout process easily.
Start sharing teasers via social media
By now you should have decided on your sales and promotional items for Black Friday. Now you want to start generating a buzz around it, start sending out teasers via social media (and any other marketing channels you usually use).
You don’t have to tell them yet exactly which items you will have on sale (although you can if you want to) but you should start letting the shoppers know that you will be offering them exciting deals for that one, special day, only, and that they must not miss out.
Improve Navigation to Popular Items
Black Friday is not the time to introduce new products or services. Black Friday is the time to back your winning horses.
What are your most popular items? Your best sellers? These items are a great choice for promotions, but they also need to be so easy to find that the shopper trips over them.
Post them on your Home Page. Include direct navigation to them on all of your landing pages. You can even create a “Best Sellers” landing page for them and send the navigation all over your website to that page.
Your customers shouldn’t have to search for your best products, they should be able to find them from anywhere on the website.
Market associated Items on the bottom of the Product Page
On every individual product page on your website, you should have a section (usually just below the main product image and info blocks) displays other products that go with the one the shopper is viewing.
Usually you will either see the words “other shoppers who bought this item also bought…”
(which draws information and product suggestions from previous shopper’s behaviour) or you can choose which Items to suggest here and create your own title, something like “ We recommend using this item with…” or “goes great with…”. This gives you more control over what is displayed, but it will take a lot of careful pairing from your side.
Have a Contingency Plan in Place
Things go wrong sometimes, especially when you have thousands of people rushing to your online store at the same time.
You have hopefully already asked your hosts and your developers to ensure that your website is ready to receive large amounts of traffic, and process large amounts of transactions, at the same time.
If you haven’t, do so now.
Even if you are prepared, though, things sometimes don’t go according to plan. Make sure your web developer, marketing team, and anyone else who you may need, is on standby to work strange hours on this most prestigious of shopping days.
You might just need your web developer at 2AM, if you do, you want to know that he is available, and prepared to work.
Even companies who don’t usually offer free shipping, usually do on Black Friday. Why? Because with every store in the country offering Black Friday deals, why would anyone shop at the one place that doesn’t offer them free shipping?
Free shipping is essential to all items bought on Black Friday.
Make sure your shipping company is prepared for an influx of orders. Ask them if they have hired extra staff to help them fulfil orders and find out if they have any promotions available for you and your customers.
Remember the Real Win for Black Friday
The real goal for Black Friday, is not actually to sell out on Black Friday (although that would be nice, too).
The real reason marketers and stores want to make a huge impact over Black Friday, is because of the marketing benefits it lays out for the rest of the holiday season.
Black Friday can gain you multitudes of new people to market to. By filling in their details when they make that Black Friday purchase, they are giving you valuable contact information for remarketing, Email marketing and even telling you what kind of items you should market to them.
Black Friday is an opportunity to get yourself known, create new first time customer and delight your existing customers to the point of making them brand advocates for you and your online store.