Black Friday and Cyber Monday (BFCM, for short) have become synonymous with the best sales of the year for holiday shoppers. This year, rising inflation and the increase in the cost of living create push and pull BFCM dynamics: a potential overall spending pullback, yet an increased desire to get the best gift deals. Are you ready to compete for your share of the season?
CQL partners have generated BFCM tips and guides to increase holiday sales and we’ve compiled them here for you. Best wishes for a great 2022 Holiday season!
Shopify Plus, a CQL platform partner, has shared 27 tips to prepare for BFCM. Our favorite tips include:
- Prepare for a longer sales period, starting BEFORE Thanksgiving
- Test and prepare your store for traffic surges (see the “BONUS” information below)
- Double down on your top sales channels
- Create contingency plans
- Benchmark and grow your conversion rate
- Optimize order and fulfillment workflows
- Retarget past visitors and customers
- Offer easy and hassle-free returns
BONUS: Check out Shopify’s Online Store Speed Report!
Shopify merchants can learn how your store performs against industry standards and other similar Shopify stores by viewing your online store speed report: Online Store Speed Report
CQL’s partner, Salesforce (whose ecommerce platform is Commerce Cloud, or SFCC), predicts online sales this November and December to reach $265 billion in the U.S. this year. Despite rising inflation, this is a 3% increase over 2021 spending. A few takeaways from their 2022 Holiday Planning Guide:
- Connect customer data: Delivering personal and consistent experiences for your customers will improve brand engagement, conversion, and loyalty – all important during the holiday season and beyond.
- Operationalize data and intelligence: turning data into personalized prices, offers, and products in real time across all channels and touchpoints will help retain current customers and add new ones.
- Create real-time inventory visibility and fulfillment flexibility: this will ensure you can sell across physical and digital channels without concerns.
- Prepare your service team: above and beyond the added traffic, arm your agents with the seasonal offers, product information, and return policies for the purchases.
Our ecommerce platform partner, BigCommerce, offers that there are 5 areas that if addressed properly, will help make this your strongest holiday season yet:
- Prepare for incoming traffic to avoid an outage, depleted inventory, and site speed issues.
- Create a hassle-free customer experience with easy navigation and a smooth path to checkout.
- Surprise and delight with shipping and fulfillment options, a memorable packaging and unboxing experience, and a clear return policy.
- Create strategic holiday marketing and promotions and integrate with social media.
- Ramp up customer service and support, make your contact information easy to find, and ask for customer feedback.
Klaviyo, a CQL partner in Email and SMS Marketing & Automation (we’re a client too!), shares the BFCM tactics that consumers loved (and loathed) this year. Here are their email marketing tips to make 2022 your best BFCM yet!
- Be honest in your marketing
- Make your deals crystal clear to understand
- Over-communicate about what customers can expect
- Build trust by asking customers what they want—and delivering on it
- Give customers a new offer to get excited about
- Give your loyal customers the VIP treatment they deserve
- Take recent behavior into account when planning communications
- Plan channel strategies that complement each other
- Use social media to showcase your products and directly engage your audience
Gorgias, a CQL partner in Customer Help Desks, shares their top five things to drive revenue through your customer experience during the holiday shopping season:
- Turn on self-service chat menus to reduce ticket volume and free up agents for higher-value conversations
- Make sure you’ll be ready to handle the ticket volume
- Update your FAQ page or help center (include all BFCM-specific policies)
- Set up Macro templates and automation Rules for all your most common pre-sales questions.
- Turn on proactive live chat campaigns to convert more customers during the big weekend.
BONUS: You can get Gorgias free for the rest of the year if you sign up through CQL! Send an email to email@example.com
Like Shopify, Gorgias also features a benchmark tool, to see how your customer service stands up against the competition: https://www.gorgias.com/benchmark-customer-service
Yotpo, a CQL partner in Loyalty & Customer Reviews, published a compilation of activities to not only maximize BFCM for your brand, but how to retain customers and keep them engaged long after the holidays pass.
- Create a sense of urgency and incentivize immediate action
- Build a loyalty program now to earn long-term retention post-holiday
- Capitalize on shifting in-store experiences
- Get creative on social media (and increase your ad budget)
- Use AI to drive discovery commerce
- Optimize your site in advance for search result shoppers
- Maximize the value of subscription customers
- Optimize your messaging strategy to respond to real-time behavior
- Try new personalization tactics, and vary them across channels
- Use visual content to increase awareness early
Searchspring, a CQL Search & Merchandising Partner, understands that BFCM is only the start of the busy season. Here are 5 tips for planning your post-Black Friday strategy:
- Use BFCM data to get to know your shoppers (What are they searching for? What converts?)
- Keep your holiday campaigns and collections converting by boosting best sellers and sale items or curating gift guides around best sellers
- Nurture relationships with personalized, logical recommendations
- Continue to audit and optimize your site regularly through the busy season
- Follow up with shoppers after BFCM with personalized emails: tracking information, thank you, additional care, product review requests, loyalty programs, and recommendations are just a few of the possibilities
Have you decided to try out several of these tips but aren’t sure where to start? Take the advice of our friends at Gorgias: prioritize 20% of the actions that drive 80% of the results.
And remember that the full holiday season offers opportunities to adjust your ecommerce strategy along the way and that this year’s holiday season will ultimately inform next year’s plan.