Is Your Shopify Store Ready for Black Friday?
This year, Black Friday takes place on November 29th and is arguably one of the most important shopping days of the year for e-commerce businesses. Considered the start of the holiday shopping season, it’s also the biggest shopping day of the year for Americans. While brick-and-mortar stores rake in huge profits, online shopping has been overtaking in-person shopping, with consumers spending in $6.2 billion in 2018 online sales, a growth of 23.6% year over year!
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While big-name stores are known to offer great deals, smaller online retailers can cater to consumer expectations and give their customers awesome Black Friday savings as well! Preparing your store for this momentous day can mean more conversions and happy customers, so dive into our ultimate Black Friday guide because the time to start getting ready is NOW!
Improve Your Site Functionality
As well as having enough inventory and a solid shipping plan, the online shopping experience is one of the most important aspects of a successful Black Friday. A customer will walk out of a physical store if it has a poor layout, badly displayed merchandise, and unfriendly staff. Similarly, a less than perfect online experience will cause potential customers to go elsewhere.
The whole shopping journey must be seamless, from the moment they arrive on the homepage to the checkout process. Below are a few of the ways you can improve the online experience for your shoppers.
Site Navigation: Consumers expect a certain flow and page layout from e-commerce sites. A custom hero image that advertises Black Friday is a must. You may also consider displaying a featured collection on your home page that’s Black Friday specific.
Image Optimization: Did you know that up to 40% of visitors leave a page if it takes longer than three seconds to load? While you want to display your beautiful products in all their glory, those high-resolution images can slow your site’s loading times. This is a big no-no, as customers will leave your site quicker than you can say ‘Image Compressor’. Check out our Graphic Design tasks to see other ways to improve the images on your site.
Extra Traffic: With the surge of shoppers, your site can crash if it’s not built to withstand the extra volume of visitors. Run tests in advance and consider installing an uptime monitor to be notified if your site goes down.
Seamless Mobile Shopping Experience: With more and more shoppers using their mobile devices to shop, it’s imperative that your site works well on mobile. Last year during Black Friday and Cyber Monday, mobile transactions on Shopify accounted for 66% of all sales, compared to 39% for the rest of the U.S. industry.
Social Proof: Customers trust other customers’ experiences. Reviews, especially those with photos create trust between you and potential consumers. An app like Loox is a leader in this space, offering merchants some great Black Friday discounts. Get 20% off as part of our Black Friday bundle.
Offer BIG Discounts
On Black Friday, shoppers are looking to save BIG. 10% or 15% off aren’t going to cut it – you need to create value for your customers by making sure they know they’re really saving and your product is the one they should spend their money on. Use all or any combination of our suggestions below for Black Friday.
Discount Codes: These can be disseminated through email and personalized based on your customers’ segmentation. Don’t just offer a blanket code of 40% off to everyone. Consider giving loyal customers a higher discount, offering specific deals based on what your customers bought in the past or first-time buyer deals.
Free Shipping: This is a big one, and customers love it. There’s nothing worse than finding a great deal but being deterred by the shipping costs.
Gift-Sets & Bundles: Buy this and get that at 50% off! This is a proven selling tactic that works, so bundle your products to give your customers the ultimate Black Friday deal.
Cyber Monday Deals: Just because Black Friday has ended doesn’t mean customers stop shopping. While Cyber Monday was initially created to encourage online shopping after Black Friday, today the lines are blurred. In fact, the whole weekend between Black Friday and Cyber Monday is one giant sale.
Comms Campaigns & a Sense of Urgency
Email: Don’t wait for Friday to announce your sale – create some buzz leading up to the day with an email campaign. Be careful about too much contact – we recommend sending an email one week before the day and one more on the day off. Let your email list know of all the awesome deals they will get with carefully crafted headlines and copy. Communication is key here, so catch their eye – no doubt email boxes will be overflowing with these types of emails, so write your content to stand out from the competitors. Personalizing your emails is also a great idea, as well as a custom email header image that’s focused on Black Friday.
Social Media: This is another platform you must utilize to communicate your store’s Black Friday deals. Just like in your emails, make sure your images are attention-grabbing and your copy is well written. If you’re running campaigns make sure that they are targeted at the right audience and timed correctly.
Countdown Timer: Create a sense of urgency with a timer that shows how many hours your site visitors have to get in on those sweet deals.
Flash Sale: If extending your Black Friday into a weekend event, consider having a daily hourly sale that offers even more savings.
Push Notifications: Sending push notifications to your customers’ creates a direct line of communication between you and them. Pushowl is an app that reaches your audience anywhere by sending notifications to their phones without requiring a mobile app. Get 50% off with the link above!
SMS Marketing: A message to your customers’ messaging app is another great way to directly talk to them. SMSBump is Shopify’s most loved text marketing and automation app – and you can get 50% off with the link above!
Simple Checkout and Cart Information
When customers arrive at the payment stage of their shopping process, they’re looking for convenience and speed. Show them their savings with in-cart rewards so they know exactly how much they’re saving. An Ajax Cart is a handy functionality to have, as some Shopify themes take customers to the cart page when they add something to their cart. This feature lets customers stay on the product page and continue shopping until they’re ready to check out.
Abandoned carts are a challenge for e-commerce retailers, with 78% of them never being completed. Fortunately, Recart is an app that tackles that problem. Using messenger, a platform already familiar to consumers, it drives back almost buyers to complete their purchase. Get 50% off with the link above!
Improve your Store and Save with this Special Promo
According to Shopify, “On Black Friday 2018, Shopify Plus merchants generated 699,923 sales per minute at peak traffic volumes. They also grossed over $855M in sales over the Black Friday Cyber Monday weekend alone.”
This is a day you can’t miss out on! Start prepping your store now so that you’re ready for when the big day arrives. To help you out, we’ve teamed up with the other Shopify Experts mentioned above (Loox, Recart, SMSbump, and Pushowl) to create an amazing Shopify App bundle that will help you save BIG on Black Friday preparations. Take a look below!