Last-Minute Black Friday Strategies for Your Business

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Black Friday is often viewed as the carnival of consumerism – with large enterprises seizing the market. Large businesses have the resources and ability to provide larger discounts to customers, leaving small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) feeling like they can’t offer competitive discounts and offers.

But Black Friday can be a huge opportunity for SMBs to expand their customer base, or even reach out to past customers. Customers are not necessarily looking for the biggest discounts, but rather the biggest value for money.

With the cost of living crisis, consumers are now more careful when it comes to spending  their hard-earned money, and they will likely be using Black Friday as a time to buy for the coming holiday months.

How Much Are Consumers Spending on Black Friday?

Last year, shoppers spent an average of $430 on Black Friday. But this figure is vague and doesn’t do much to inform how your business should strategize for Black Friday.

Online spend:

  • Gen Z –  28.3%
  • Millennials –  44.4%

Offline spend:

  • Gen Z –  71.7%
  • Millennials –  55.6%

These figures can help inform where you should focus your Black Friday strategies and offers. If your target market is primarily Gen Z, you might want to focus on in-store discounts and offers, or try and increase your online presence to reach more Gen Zers. If your target audience is millennials, you could focus your online campaign to target this group.

Business Strategies for Black Friday

We’ve collected our favorite tips and tricks to ensure your Black Friday offers are snatched up without a hitch:

  1. Check Stock Levels

Before advertising your discounts and offers, make sure you have the right amount of stock. Don’t assume certain items won’t be sold, instead, prep your stock levels and make sure you have enough to see you through from Black Friday to Cyber Monday.

  1. Check Your Website Speed

There’s nothing customers hate more than a glitchy and slow website. With the added franticness of Black Friday, you don’t want your customers abandoning their purchases just because your site isn’t speedy enough.

Make sure your website can handle a higher volume of traffic. You can do this by carrying out a load test. Thankfully, there are tons of free tools online that will help you carry this out, as well as give you ways to increase the speed of your site.

  1. Provide Free or Fast Delivery

Last year, Americans spent $8.9 billion in online sales on Black Friday. With billions being spent online, your shipping methods must be optimized and efficient.

You might consider offering quicker shipping methods for Black Friday sales to entice shoppers. With Amazon’s Prime delivery and large enterprises typically offering next-day delivery, shoppers are used to next-day delivery methods and longer shipping times can quickly put a potential customer off from purchasing from your business.

  1. Optimize the Checkout Process

As well as a fast site, the checkout process on your ecommerce store should be optimized to provide an easy and efficient checkout experience. A slow or glitchy process can easily lose you sales. So, before Black Friday, take a look at your analytics and run through the process to ensure it’s easy for customers to make purchases.

Some small ways you can improve the experience is by providing extra info on how to fill in the relevant fields to make the buying process easier to understand.

  1. Get Your Customer Service Team Ready

With a much larger number of shoppers, you might find that you have tons more customer service requests. Prior to Black Friday, it’s important to prep your customer service team to ensure potential customers have a smooth experience, and that your team can answer any queries that are thrown their way.

Research has shown that 40% of shoppers expect a response to their questions, messages, and comments on social media. Getting your team social media ready is key to running a smooth sales ship.

You can install a chat box on your website so visitors can easily ask questions. Another option is to create a Black Friday specific email address to ensure these shoppers are prioritized and given an exclusive avenue to have any questions answered or issues rectified.

  1. Sell Directly on Social Media

Social media isn’t just the lifeblood of your marketing campaigns, it can also boost your sales and revenue. Selling directly on social media platforms, such as Instagram, makes it easier for shoppers to convert.

Marketing Strategies

A major part of optimizing your business’ Black Friday sales involves great marketing strategies. We’ve listed our best, last-minute marketing strategies, so you can reach as many potential customers as possible.

  1. Develop an Email Marketing Campaign

An email marketing campaign is key to reaching potential customers. One of the best ways to target customers who are genuinely interested in your Black Friday offers is to create a pop-up in the lead-up to the day. The pop-up should outline that your business is offering Black Friday deals and, by offering their email address, visitors to your site will receive exclusive discounts in their inboxes.

Consumers who purchase items through email typically spend around 138% more than people who don’t receive email offers. The impact of email marketing on sales means it doesn’t matter how late you’ve left it, even if you only have a few days before Black Friday, it’s always worth putting together an email marketing campaign.

  1. Get Unique

Most businesses will be offering free delivery or great deals, so it’s important to stand out a little from the competition. You don’t necessarily have to do anything groundbreaking to attract customers, but it certainly doesn’t hurt to set yourself apart from your competition.

Do some research on competitors and figure out what discounts and incentives they’re offering to see how you might be able to do something a little different. You could offer a free gift with each purchase or further discount codes that go beyond the Black Friday sales.

  1. Be Mysterious

Infusing some mystery into your marketing campaign can entice shoppers to open up their emails or click from a social media post to your website. Because so many businesses will be sending similar emails, or creating similar social media campaigns, people can easily filter out discounts or offerings. If you create a level of mystery, such as mentioning that customers will get a discount in an email subject line – but don’t specify numbers – it can create enough mystery and excitement that your email may just stand out from others.

This strategy takes no time at all –  just a little creativity.

  1. Create Urgency

One of the easiest strategies you can implement into your marketing campaign is to create a sense of urgency. People are motivated by scarcity so, even though you should (hopefully) be stocked up, creating a sense of urgency motivates shoppers to make purchases.

Some quick and easy ideas for creating urgency include flash sales. This is where you reduce items or add a certain discount for a short amount of time. An easy way to implement this is to have different discounts for each hour of the sale. You’ll need to decide beforehand what sales and discounts you want to offer, then divvy these up by the hour. Create website banners, social media posts, and design emails to let shoppers know about the flash sales.

  1. Include Your Customers in Your Social Media Campaign

People sharing their genuine experiences and opinions is one of the reasons social media is so influential. With Black Friday messages getting a 968.5% increase in engagements on social media, this is a key time to focus on your online campaign.

Encouraging past and present customers to create social media posts about their purchases from your business is a great way to include your customers in  your social media campaign. It also helps to establish a genuine presence online. You can then offer an incentive, such as a small discount for future purchases, or enter each online post into a lucky draw.

This strategy should increase your social media engagement, and it’s pretty easy to set up. It just requires you to create some posts and share this with your followers.

Post-Black Friday Tips

Setting your business apart from its competitors during this time can be overwhelming. That’s why it’s key to have some post-Black Friday strategies in place, so you can be on top of next year’s Black Friday sales. 

The first thing you want to do is analyze your data and figure out what offers, items, and marketing avenues were most popular. Even if something didn’t quite work out the way you wanted it to, use this as an opportunity to tweak your strategy for next year. 

Black Friday is a win-win situation because businesses can get rid of old stock and free up space and revenue to bring in new collections and items. A bonus is that consumers get a hefty discount. If you want to optimize your Black Friday sales, it’s a good idea to plan ahead and figure out which items you want to clear out and use these to guide how much discount you apply. 

A Round-Up of Our Last-Minute Black Friday Strategies:

  • Know your audience
  • Optimize your website and checkout process
  • Check stock levels
  • Create urgency in your marketing campaigns
  • Add a unique or mysterious flair to your marketing
Written by:
Zara Chechi
Zara is a Payments Expert, specialising in writing about Point of Sale systems. With a Law Degree from City University of London, she has used her legally-honed research and analytical skills to develop expertise in the Business Services world. Featured in FinTech Magazine, she quickly became an expert in payroll, POS systems, and merchant accounts.