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Prepare for Black Friday-Cyber Monday: 5 Tips to Maximize Sales

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Batool Aboelymen
Prepare for Black Friday-Cyber Monday: 5 Tips to Maximize Sales

First of all, why should Black Friday-Cyber Monday (BFCM) be important to you? 🤔 You might be wondering how big is that weekend and why should I care?

Not to worry, fellow merchant, here is your answer: The 2020 Black Friday marked the second-largest spending day in U.S history. Consumer spending hit a new record of $9.0 billion, which was an increase of 21.6 % year over year. If we only consider Shopify online stores, sales over BFCM, accounted for $5.1 billion, an increase of 76% from 2020.

In this post, we’ll share five strategies that you can apply to your online store to maximize engagement, conversion, and sales during BFCM weekend - and can even be helpful year-round.

Top shopping days that consumers plan on participating in

Prepare Your Online Store for Black Friday-Cyber Monday

Now that you know why we need you to be on top of this, let’s jump right into how you should prepare your online store.

1. Create appealing discounts and limited offers

Discounted and limited offers are the main motivation that customers shop on BFCM - everyone’s on the lookout for the best deals! While customers still care deeply about the quality of your product, prices drive their purchase. A survey completed last year by eMarketer showed that 87% of consumers indicated that discounts are what motivates their online purchase - more than loyalty programs and retargeting. Moreover, discounts allow your business the chance  to drive higher site traffic, boost new customer acquisition, leverage your brand loyalty, increase your sales, and even get rid of old inventory. 

Messages that will most strongly motivate US internet users to complete a transaction, eMarketer

Here are five ways we suggest you try discounts for your Black Friday-Cyber Monday promotions:

  1. Bundled discounts
  2. Buy 1, get 1 free
  3. Volume Discounts
  4. Free Shipping
  5. Vouchers and Coupons

Apps and tools from Shopify to assign discounts easily

To make your life even easier, we recommend D-Cart, a Shopify app that helps your customers apply a discount code on their cart. Users will be able to apply a code directly in your cart and see their savings. This small improvement will increase customer satisfaction and improve user experience, which will lower the cart abandonment rate and generate greater sales in your store.

Example of pop-up discount code promotion

2. Upsell and cross-sell your products

Our second tip is focused on creating additional value to customers by suggesting other products beyond the ones they’ve encountered. You could do that by cross-selling and up-selling. The two terms are often used together because they provide a similar benefit; however, you should understand the difference so you know when to implement each one.

Cross-selling is when you try to offer your customer a complimentary product to their original choice. These complimentary products are additions they would have likely thought of buying now or in the future from your online store. With cross-selling, you’re trying to increase your customers’ total order value by adding more products. At the same time, you’re educating your customer about other products that would satisfy their needs.  

For example, when a customer buys a mattress from IKEA’s online store and begins the checkout process, the website will recommend pillows or other bedroom essentials that compliment their purchase - that’s cross-selling!

When it comes to Upselling, you offer customers a higher quality and higher priced version of their initial product of choice. This tactic allows you to push more premium products since it lets the customer visualize the value they would get by selecting the higher-priced option. 

To give an example, a customer may be shopping for earbuds for their smartphone. With upselling, you would be able to suggest more premium earbuds with noise cancellation. This let’s the customer consider the purchase of the more premium, and higher priced, item. 

Apps and tools from Shopify that support cross-selling and upselling

You may ask by now, what Shopify Apps could I use to apply these tactics? We got you, fellow merchant!

  1. Our first recommendation is Hi Conversion Recommend, which uses live buying-signals, and Amazon's own AI to generate ultra-relevant personalized product recommendations – all in real time.
  2. Checkout Promotions, allow you to Easily grow your revenue by offering your customers a variety of checkout promotions with one click upsells and free gifts, post purchase. 
Product recommendation section that has both cross-selling (pillows since you bought a mattress) and upselling (more premium mattresses) opportunities, IKEA

3. Authentically engage with your customers

While Black Friday-Cyber Monday is your chance to highlight discounts and product variety, there are some hacks you could use to elevate your conversion rates.

1. Personalize your content: To do this, it's important to understand your buyer persona as much as possible. Consider these questions about your customers and jot down the responses: where they find out about your products? What emotional attachment do they have with your products? What media outlets do they use? What influences their purchase? What else do they shop for? What interests do they have beyond shopping? In nailing these questions down, you’re able to craft your messaging to target your ideal buyer profile. Based on research done by Google, 89% of US marketers reported that personalization on their website or app resulted in an increase in revenue. This level of personalization is great for all your marketing channels - email communications, product recommendations, and even in the packaging and delivery experience.

2. Interact with UGC (User Generated content): UGC is content that your customers leave on your social media channels or website to share their experience, opinions, and reviews about your brand and products. Interacting with such content gives your brand more credibility and increases brand loyalty. 

Personalization as a driver for increased revenue in e-commerce, Think With Google

Here’s another stat to really make you think about UGC! According to a survey done by Savanta, nearly two-thirds (62%) of consumers from Australia, Canada, France, Germany, UK, and US said they were more likely to buy a product if they were able to view other customers’ photos and videos.

So, you could start small. How? Just like and comment on your users' engagement, show appreciation for their reviews, and send them a thank you email. Bottom line is, be engaged with your users' engagement. Give them some love!

Impact of brands engaging with their UGC, eMarketer

3. Go LIVE in your online store: Live shopping allows e-commerce merchants to host live video streaming events directly in their online store or external application. Live video streaming allows you to provide your customers with a glimpse of how they could use and experience your product. At the same time, customers can use the live chat to engage and have their questions answered in real-time.

Live Shopping has emerged as the latest trend in the e-commerce industry. Giants like Amazon, Samsung, and more are building their own live streaming platforms to achieve higher conversion rates. Such brands are catching up with the live shopping trend after its success in China. Live shopping in China has grown into a $300 billion industry this year, accounting for 11.7% of all retail e-commerce sales in the country! Just to put it into perspective, that figure makes the livestream shopping market in China larger than every other retail e-commerce market in the world, except for China and the US.

Past results and future estimates of e-commerce sales in China using live streaming, eMarketer

Apps and tools from Shopify to help you better engage with your customers

We didn’t forget about you! As usual, here are some shopify apps that could help you engage with your customers more effectively.

  1. Here’s our shameless plug, Shop Studio Live: our app allows you to bring your products to life and eliminate the guesswork for your customers by greeting them, answering questions, and creating urgency to buy. Shop Studio Live embeds a live video, live chat, and featured products list directly in your online store.
  2. Vimotia: a Shoppable video tool that lets you add interactive widgets to any ordinary videos. You can add in-video call-to-action such as an "Add to Cart" button. That way, customers can buy products with just one-click while they watch your brand and product videos.

4. Simplify your checkout process

The complexity of the check-out process could be a huge deterrent to shopping cart abandonment. According to a 2018 study by Statista on the primary reasons behind cart abandonment, the hassle behind entering payment and shipping information were the 4th and 5th ranking in respondents’ reason to abandon their cart.

That's why adding digital wallets encourages your customers to convert faster. This could include a number of frictionless payment methods such as Shopify Pay, Apple Pay, and Google Pay or international payment methods including SEPA, iDEAL, and Alipay.

However, it might be that your customers just got distracted. In that case, we recommend you find ways to remind them of what they were almost about to buy. 

Reasons that digital shoppers abandon their carts, Statista

A great example I just experienced is with Linjer, a jewelry brand, reminding me about a pair of earnings which I abandoned in my cart! They even added a discount code to encourage me to return and continue the purchase. BTW, this reminder worked, and I’m proudly wearing those earrings right now.

Example of SMS retargeting with discounts and free shipping due to abandoned cart

Apps and tools from Shopify to help you recover abandoned carts

  1. Tapsend: An SMS marketing app that specializes in abandoned cart recovery for Shopify stores. They help commerce brand owners recover up to 30% of abandoned carts.
  2. LiveRecover : The app powers 1000’s of Shopify store SMS marketing and cart recovery. With this app, you can text message customers with upsells, abandoned cart messages, and other content with SMS.

5. Ensure Seamless Delivery

Delivery and post-purchase experience is as important as your online store experience. It could actually be your competitive edge. Amazon is a great example of that. Based on a study complete by Statista, Amazon was selected by Canadians as the brand with the best delivery experience compared to other retailers and marketplaces.

Ranking last delivery experience by Canadian online shoppers, Statista

Apps and tools from Shopify to support your delivery services

  1. Swyft: Grow your sales by offering shoppers the choice of affordable same-day delivery.
  2. Arka: Arka helps your business satisfy your packaging needs in just a few simple clicks. All you've got to do is select the type of box you'd like, determine the sizing and quantity, and then brand it with your company's logo, messaging, and colors.

Get ready for BFCM

Time to get ready for Black Friday-Cyber Monday! Start as early as possible this season so that you have the time to implement some (or all) of these strategie. Shopify applications are a great way for Shopify merchants to supercharge their online store with additional features. These applications can help you engage more effectively with your customers before, during, and after their purchase. Ultimately, creating these positive experiences will allow you to convert more customers and increase your revenue!


Want to learn more about live shopping? Check out Shop Studio Live on the Shopify App Store or reach out to our team for a free e-commerce strategy consultation.


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