• Prepare for Black Friday now to increase the likelihood of getting ROI on your BF/CM promotion
  • Review your email marketing strategy. Focus on growing your list & engaging your readers
  • Be consistent on social media and nurture the community you’re building
  • Make sure your website is friction-free along the customer journey

It’s almost that time of year!

You know, when people go mad for any deals on their favorite products?

Black Friday falls on Friday, November 25, 2022 – that means you have less than 3 months to get it together!

Sandra from Superstore. Talking to her reflection. Text reads: Black Friday? What? I'm not afraid of you!

Why start now?

By preparing for your Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales now, you’ll be ready (and less overwhelmed!) when the big sale time comes.

Plus, now is the time to grow your audience and start priming them for the “Biggest Sale of the Year!”

So, they’re ready to buy when your deals are live.

This is especially important because 59% of shoppers will be shopping for deals before November’s even here.

With over half of your audience raring to go now – you’d better get a move on.

Have a plan when preparing for Black Friday

Black Friday and Cyber Monday could be your highest grossing time if you run an eCommerce business.

In fact, according to Adobe, online sales continue to rise year over year.

In 2021 we saw $204 billion USD in revenue.

Bar graph showing the online revenue trends from 2014 - 2021. The highest revenue was in 2021 and is a good signal that Black Friday will be busy for eCommerce brands.

Get the full Adobe 2021 Shopping Insights Report

For eCommerce brands, preparing early for Black Friday and Cyber Monday could make a big difference in your sales report at the end of the year.

When creating a plan for your sale, you should invest some time in a few areas before the big day.

Let’s look at the components of each.

Build an engaged email list

Delivering an ROI of about $36 per $1 spent, emails are a very effective way to communicate your offers all year long.

Not just for Black Friday.

With that in mind, start building your email list now, so your audience is ready when your Black Friday offers are live.

By focusing on building a relationship with your readers now, you can figure out how to create the best offer for them when Black Friday comes.

Unfortunately, many businesses forget this part and send out that one huge sales email in November, expecting people to buy.

It doesn’t work like that.

Your readers need to be nurtured and convinced that your brand is the one they want to invest their hard-earned money in.

Plus, having a conversation with your readers allows you to find out what they want and develop emails (and offers) that meet those needs.

You can:

  • Talk to your customers
  • Send them a survey
  • Have a look online to see what they’re talking about (look at Amazon, forums and social media platforms)
  • Ask them to self-segment (what topics they care to hear about, how often they want emails)
  • Get their opinions on resources you offer or products you want to develop

What do your customers care about?

The Office characters. Text reads: What do we want? 
When do we want it?

Next, act on all that data you’ve collected from your readers.

What kinds of emails can you start sending that will offer real value to your readers and keep them opening each one?

This is key.

People don’t buy from emails they don’t open.

Keep track of what your readers like by watching your open rates, click-through rates and any replies you get.

Then, send your readers emails that match what they like and what you want to sell.

Finally, you’re going to spend some time reviewing and creating these email marketing campaigns:

Welcome emails

  • Usually 5-7 emails
  • Sent as soon as a new subscriber joins your list
  • Introduces prospects to your brand, your values, your products and what makes you worth sticking around for
  • Allows the reader to self-segment and tell you a bit about themselves

Nurture emails

  • Emails are sent on a regular basis (the timeframe is predetermined by you)
  • Includes any relevant information you want to pass on to your readers
  • Shares blog posts, new products, customer testimonials, helpful tips, etc.

Sales emails

  • Sent only before and during a sales event
  • Leads readers into the sale and gives a sneak peek at what’s going to be on sale
  • Overcomes any objections readers might have and shows them what benefits they’re going to get from your product
  • Uses techniques like urgency and scarcity to inform readers how long they have to get the offer

Abandoned cart emails

  • Sent automatically after a customer leaves their cart while shopping
  • Timed to give the customer different levels of urgency after abandoning their cart
  • Includes benefits and descriptions of the items the customer left in their cart
  • Usually offers a deal to the customer if they make their purchase now

In this Tutorial Tuesday, Joanna shares her template for writing an email that uses urgency and real benefits to show customers why they need the product or service now.

Although she’s writing a launch email, the techniques used will only strengthen your Black Friday emails.

If you want to see how great emails are written, check out these email tutorials.

Nurture your social media community

A social media presence for your business is basically a non-negotiable these days.

Sprout Social’s State of Social Media Report shows that 55% of consumers use social media to learn about brands and companies.

In your preparation for Black Friday, up your social media game and build some customer loyalty.

You can attract your target audience by:

  • Writing captions that are interesting and fit your brand
  • Include a call to action at the end
  • Show the benefits of your product
  • Share customer success stories
  • Share exclusive discount codes with your followers
  • Include links to your website and your email list sign up
Creating a positive brand experience ahead of Black Friday. 
67% of customers value responsive customer service and 59% value relevant content.

Here’s what you can do now to start creating an engaged community on your social media platform:

  • Talk to your audience (reply to comments, leave comments on their posts)
  • Include a call to action on your posts
  • Use a variety of media styles (photos, videos, lives)
  • Partner with influencers or other businesses to cross-promote your brand
  • Give exclusive deals and offers to your followers
  • Create giveaways with other businesses
  • Post customer reviews and testimonials
  • Feature customer posts using your product

Optimize the buyer journey on your website

Okay, this is our last stop on our ‘How to prepare for Black Friday’ train.

And it’s a big one.

Your website will be the meeting place of all your hard work leading up to Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

You’ve hyped up your business, given customers a reason to love your brand and shown them your awesome products.

All your email buttons and social media links will lead customers to the product detail pages on your website…

Which leads them to the checkout page.

Without a smooth user experience, customers could get lost and never reach the point of purchase. Or post-purchase.

Alexis from Schitt's creek. Text reads: What am I supposed to do?!

So, go through your site as a customer.

The buyer’s journey from their first point of contact with you to the point of purchase and post-purchase should be smooth.

Think about how potential customers find you.

Do they start on Instagram -≥ then move to your link in bio -≥ then to your Home page -≥ then browse your products -≥ then read your About page -≥ then look at your shipping options?

Putting yourself in your customer’s shoes is important to ensure your user experience is seamless.

Look at your home page, product detail pages, about page and checkout page.

  • Does your messaging match across the pages?
  • Do the links go where they should?
  • Is it easy to get from one product to another?
  • Is it easy to purchase a product?
  • Do you have a Thank You page set up post-purchase?
  • Are your product descriptions informative and do they show the benefits of each product?
  • Does your copy overcome common objections?

Think about the user experience on your site.

The key for any eCommerce retailer is making buying simple for the customer.

How are you going to prepare for Black Friday?

Use the months leading up to Black Friday to focus on lead generation.

  • Grow engaged email and SMS lists
  • Nurture your social media community
  • Pay attention to your audiences’ needs & wants (this will help you optimize your Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals when the time comes)

And don’t forget…

You need to find and fix any cracks that might be showing in your customer experience.

That way you’ll be miles ahead of the competition.

Plus, you’ll have the best chance of seeing ROI on your Black Friday and Cyber Monday efforts.

Because the fact of the matter is…

BFCM is right around the corner – with it comes a huge opportunity

Black Friday is one of those rare times of year when you CAN make all the money you need to cover 365 days’ worth of business overhead and expenses.

IF you’re ready. But here’s the thing:

To maximize the ROI of ALL your BFCM efforts, you need an engaged list and audience ready and willing to buy what you’re selling.

The good news? There’s still time.

If you start filling your pipeline now, you can build an engaged list that’s excited to take you up on your BFCM offer. Let us show you how 🙂