It’s peak sales season again in less than two months. The giant sales weekend in the e-commerce industry, Black Friday and Cyber Monday is very around the corner.
As a Shopify merchant reading this, your first reaction should be “it’s sales o’clock”. Let’s start with the BFCM revenue evaluation in 2021.
Black Friday sales revenue in 2021 was valued at $8.9 billion, a 1.3% drop from 2020, and Cyber Monday was evaluated at $10.7 billion with a 1.4% decrease from 2020.
Considering the indications for 2022 BFCM, irrespective of the current economic circumstances around purchasing ability, online sales are still predicted to be on the increase.
Keeping your store in good shape and attractive to customers is one sure key to having good sales during Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
In 2021, a survey by Shopify established that 50% of Shopify store owners prepared for the BFCM at least a month ahead of the sales period. While medium and large-scale Shopify merchants started planning for BFCM 2021 3-4months ahead.
The focal points while planning for BFCM are marketing, promotions, pricing strategy, and e-commerce channel. Most of which is our focus point in this article.
5 BFCM Tips To Prepare You As A Shopify Merchant
There are two key aspects we would be concentrating on in this post. This is to help you prepare quickly for the peak season sales as D-day is around the corner, Store Analysis/Checkup, and Sales Marketing Strategy.
These tips also are quick to actualize within the limited period before sales day. And they are outlined with the fact that BFCM 2022 might start earlier than the postulated date for Black Friday and Cyber Monday which is November 25th to November 28th.
The vital activities to prepare your store for the sales season are embedded in marketing and the store’s usability.
1. Online Store Usability and Navigation
Usability is a core part of customer experience and has a stronghold when it comes to decision-making, especially in the e-commerce industry where attraction and an easy-to-understand platform is a vital part of your customer experience.
Your store should be likable to customers. The center of your design and structure should be your customers. One way to analyze this is to ask yourself, if as a newbie on your store’s website are you going to buy with the way you navigate around it.
This way, you know where you need to re-work or adjust copy to improve customer experience.
Cyber weekend is not a time when you want to gamble on whether your customers will find your store usable with the way it is organized. What you need to do is to create a space that can quickly point them to strategic CTAs.
2. Checkout Process
Remember the Cyber weekend is a rush hour period. Everyone wants to grab everything they can lay their finger on in the shortest time. Nobody wants to be stuck with paying for an item when they could have used the time to get more products.
Having a checkout procedure that is complicated at a time like this might be discouraging to customers especially if you are a small-scale business.
If on a standard business day about 24% of online shoppers abandoned their carts because the store required that they sign up before making a purchase. If that is the case during the normal season, the figures might be up during a peak sales season like BFCM.
17% of customers used the exit door on online stores due to the fact that the checkout process was too long or complicated. This is an indicator that you need to simplify your checkout forms as much as possible.
A way to counter the long checkout procedure is to allow first-time buyers to check out as guests. This will quicken their payment process. Post-payment you can then require that they sign up to keep track of their orders.
3. Discount and Offer List/Strategy
Discount is expected to reduce for BFCM 2022 considering the economic circumstances like inflation and supply chain issues. The discount rate from 2020 (26%) fell by 2% in 2021 (24%). This year might be experiencing more reduction in the discount offer.
Preparing your discount and offer list would help you know what product you want to discount and improve its sales during this period.
It is however advisable to have carried out a product analysis so that you know which of your products will be most or less demanded during the sales holiday.
For cases where there are items, you want to take off the shelf, discounting their prices can motivate customers to add them to your cart. Talking about dead stocks, you can also create product bundles by creating a package mix of popular products with a slow-moving product.
This way you can clear your inventory of old stock, boost sales, and increase revenue. One stone, two birds.
Another offer or reward tip is BOGOF (Buy X Get Y Free). You can hinge on this discount strategy during this holiday sales.
Having an offer list also can help you facilitate your promotion and marketing plans. The product analysis would have helped you with choosing what product offers will be attached. This way you can channel your sales ad and marketing campaign in the right direction.
4. Sales Ad/Campaign
When preparing your marketing strategy, know what products consumers want to shop on which of the sales days. What customers look out for on each holiday sale is different.
For some customers, Cyber Monday is the sales period when they shop for gadgets, games, and electronics mostly. Black Friday mostly has smartphones, phone accessories, and fashion items ranking high among its most bought products.
Knowing which products to push in promotions while preparing for BFCM will help you reach your target audience quicker and gain more sales.
One goal your sales campaign should target is to bring massive sales as well as satisfy your customers’ needs. Matching what you have to offer in terms of discount or other offers such as gift with purchase (GWP), BOGOF, etc with what buyers are looking for will increase your conversion rate from the sales ad.
Prior to having your promotional campaign, you should have products that are trendy and can attract sales at the core of your ads. Customers will know before the major sales day what you have to offer and this might quicken their purchase decision.
5. Order Fulfillment Procedure
Have a flexible buying structure where your customers can buy online and pick up in person at your physical outlet, that is if you run a multichannel store.
Buy Online, Pick-Up In-store (BOPIS) has become a routine, especially for customers who are in your store’s location, this way they cut down on shipping fees.
Other reasons why customers want to go the BOPIS way is to get the chance to examine the products properly and also bypass online payment issues experienced during this period due to the spiking traffic on payment platforms.
Maintaining a clear and swift order fulfillment process during BFCM can help you retain a chunk of your BFCM buyers’ post-holiday sales. Noting that orders are usually overboard during Cyber weekend, mixing up orders might be inevitable without a proper order management team.
To give your customers the best of the Cyber weekend is not limited to discount offers but also how their orders are been processed and delivered.
Adding this as extra, using social media as a sales point can also help increase sales and enhance promotion strategy. Small businesses in 2021 included social media as part of their marketing strategy and tripled their sales.