The holidays are just around the corner, and you know what that means: Black Friday is coming at us fast.
So is its 21st century companion, Cyber Monday.
It's the biggest online shopping day of the year, and it's time to start getting ready if you sell products online.
Deals, coupons, discounts, humor, and even taking an anti-Black Friday stance, are all viable ways to get the most out of this consumer holiday.
But first, you need to make sure you've covered the fundamentals.
This is a great time to cross you i's and dot your t's when it comes to your website, your shipping and logistics arrangements, your mobile responsiveness, and other features your site needs to have.
In a world of Amazon and overnight shipping, you might be at a disadvantage if your product takes two weeks to ship.
But as long as the shipping is both reliable and inexpensive, you can work around this by being clear about the protracted shipping schedule.
In a recent blog post, Shopify explains the basic things you need to have in place before you start running a successful social media ad campaign for Cyber Monday.
Getting the Basics Right
Before we dive into campaigns you can steal, let’s cover the basics of BFCM social media campaigns.
There are a few things to keep in mind as you navigate the busy season and try to cut through the holiday noise:
1. Ensure you have (and promote) reliable, inexpensive shipping.
Timeliness matters more than ever this time of year.
When asked what would make them shop online more often, 90% of survey participants said free shipping was the number one incentive.
Nearly half said same-day shipping would make them more likely to shop online, but only 9% said they’d used same-day shipping in the last year.
Among frequent online shoppers, 50% said they have used one-day shipping and 85% said they have used two-day shipping.
2. Prepare yourself for mobile buyers.
More and more people are turning to mobile when shopping online, but mobile conversion rates continue to lag behind.
Adobe found that the average conversion rate on smartphones was only 1.9%, less than half the conversion rate on desktop (4.3%).
Yet smartphones accounted for 45% of BFCM traffic.
That’s a huge opportunity.
Make double, triple, quadruple sure your site looks and works as expected on mobile devices (not just the mobile device you own).
3. Choose the right social networks for you.
It’s super easy to get carried away and divide your time between too many social networks.
Focus on the 1-2 social networks you have (a) generated the most revenue from and (b) fostered the most engaged communities on.
You don’t have to be everywhere.
4. Start preparing and executing early.
Don’t expect to swoop in at the last minute with a killer social media campaign.
Put in the work ahead of time to plan out the campaigns.
What’s your goal? What’s your success metric?
How are you going to reach the right audience?
We all know BFCM has become more than just a weekend; it’s extended to the weeks before and after.
So come prepared!
5. Create dedicated landing pages.
If you’re promoting BFCM sales on social media, go ahead and create a dedicated landing page or two for the occasion.
For example, here’s the BFCM landing page for Amazon.
Dedicated landing pages allow you to match the message you send on social media to the message you send on your site more closely, allowing for an improved conversion rate.
You might even have different BFCM landing pages for sales in different product categories.
6. Be smart about your day-of timing.
Last year, we found that on Black Friday, order traffic steadily increased until hitting a 12 p.m. peak.
During Cyber Monday, shoppers took a mid-evening break before peaking at 9 p.m.
You can find more Cyber Monday and Black Friday ecommerce tips over at the Shopify blog.