As a direct result of COVID-19, consumer behaviour has seen dramatic changes, including a significant increase in online shopping. With Black Friday fast approaching on the 27th November, closely followed by Cyber Monday on the 30th, brands will be keen to drive sales even further this month.
An effective Black Friday marketing strategy stretches far and wide, with many big brands and agencies strategising and planning at least three months in advance.
But if you’ve found yourself at the beginning of November and still keen to jump on the event, we’ve pulled together some Black Friday marketing ideas that you can implement on your website in the weeks leading up to the big event to help maximise your brand’s exposure.
In the run up to, and during BFCM (Black Friday Cyber Monday), the keywords that users pump into their Google Search bar are likely to differ from normal.
‘Dyson hair dryer Black Friday’ – monthly searches rose from an average of 2.4k in October 2019 to 40.5k in November 2019.
‘Black Friday tablet deals’ – monthly searches rose from an average of 320 in October 2019 to 33.1k in November 2019.
The desirability for specific products has shifted significantly as a direct result of COVID-19 also, with huge year-on-year growth in home appliance and home gym equipment sales.
‘Home gym equipment’ – monthly searches rose from an average of 8.1k in February 2020 to 90.5k just a month later.
Your keyword research and pricing plan should take this into consideration. If you’re a fashion retailer for instance, there’s no point in discounting flipflops, but you might want to consider a flash sale on face masks.
Additionally, target those in the research stages, by offering gift guide inspiration in the hopes that shoppers will return to your website and purchase from you during your sale.
‘Black Friday gifts for her’ – monthly searches rose from an average of 880 in November 2016 to 2.4k in November 2019.
Top tip – You can use Google’s free Keyword Planner tool if you’re new to keyword research.
Once you’ve finalised your keyword targeting, write detailed descriptions for key product pages. If your website is lacking in this department, then your chances of ranking and being found by users are going to be pretty low.
Based on your keyword research, optimise your product title tags and meta descriptions to boost your website’s visibility in Search Engines. The competition will be tough, and you’ll want to stand out from the crowd, encouraging users to click on your listing.
Mention things like free shipping and returns, next day delivery and include discounts etc. Additionally, mark-up product pages with structured data (special code that gives Search Engines extra information about your merchandise) to give users additional snippets of information including price, average star rating and stock availability.
Nobody likes missing out on a bargain. Use these Black Friday marketing ideas to trigger FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) when users land on your website.
Implement a simple form or popup on your website that encourages visitors to sign up for price alerts, with options to receive alerts and updates on all of your Black Friday deals. You could drill this down even further for specific products, product categories and brand-based deals that are tailored around individual customer interest.
Take a step further and plan pricing activity throughout the day to encourage repeat visitors. Save your best deals for early morning, lunchtime and later in the evening for those who will be working a 9-5.
As an alternative to price alert forms and popups, ensure that your website is setup with ‘Wish list’ functionality to allow customers to create a unique list of desired items. If you’re clued up on email marketing, you could push out an email to these users highlighting specific discounts on products that you know that they’re thinking about buying – “Unmissable Black Friday Deals on Products You Love!”
Repeat customers and new users will be visiting your website in the run up to, and during, Black Friday. As soon as they land on the website, spark their interest with a homepage banner that’s on-brand but pops – “Coming Soon” or “Black Friday Sale Now On!”
Similar to your website banner, consider adding an automatic popup to the website to remind your website visitors of your sale. This could fire after a certain number of page views or at a specific time during their session.
Additionally, consider implementing an exit intent popup – “Don’t Miss Out – Get 15% off all products with this discount code!” – a last minute attempt to retain the interest of those users who are about to bounce away from your website.
Top tip – Think about the frequency and visibility of your popups. Google advises against popups that cover the main content of a page and there’s nothing worse than having to click out of a popup multiple times when browsing a website. One popup upon visiting and one popup upon exiting is more than enough! Additionally, don’t devalue your brand with mixed messaging. For example, if you’re a luxury brand, avoid pushy, SPAM-like popups and implement them with care.
Add a countdown timer to your website to let users know when your deals are about to expire. This could be across all of your Black Friday deals or product specific – “Hurry! Only 20 minutes left to get 50% off the Dyson Hair Dryer.”
Show the number of items in stock at your specific discount price – “Only Dyson Hair Dryers left at 50% off. Don’t miss out!” – and highlight how many other users are currently viewing a specific product – “196 others are viewing this product”. The two combined is a great way to spark an impulse buy.
Top tip – Check out software platforms such as Taggstar who can help integrate this messaging on your website.
Drive engagement on your website with a fun, interactive game offering users a chance to win varying discounts or free prizes. Think Wheel of Fortune style or something similar.
Offer a Black Friday deal on a mystery box or bundle up products for a gift box style offer – a great way to offload unused stock.
COVID-19 has been tough on all businesses, so if your profit margins have taken a hit in 2020 and you’re reluctant to discount your products, offer a free gift on all sales as an alternative. Shoppers love a freebie, and again, it’s a great way to offload unused stock.
Those keen to grab a bargain in the past may well have fallen victim to cyber criminals and we expect to see an explosion in SPAM and phishing attacks in the run up to BFCM.
Reassure online shoppers whilst they’re browsing your website by highlighting:
Top tip – Trustpilot’s widget allows you to embed review star feature boxes across your website. Consider adding this to your header so that this information is visible to users on every page that they visit throughout their session.
Top tip – Make sure that the information above is easily accessible by including links to the specific pages within the footer.
Providing a seamless shopping experience is the key to maximising conversions.
Top tip – Use free tools such as GTmetrix and PageSpeed Insights to test your website across desktop and mobile. Installing WordPress’ WP Rocket plugin is a great way to maintain ultra-fast load time.
Avoid common pitfalls by user testing price alerts, wish lists, popups, discount codes, your checkout process and more across both desktop and mobile. Ideally, those testing won’t have visited the website before, so start pinning down friends and family for shared-screen Zoom calls to gather qualitative data in the run up to BFCM.
The growth in online shopping shows no sign of slowing and it’s important that you review your traffic and ranking data from this year’s Black Friday push to better inform your next seasonal marketing strategy.
In the run up to the festive period where online shoppers will be on the hunt for deals, check out our top tips for planning your Christmas marketing campaign or find out how to make the most of seasonal events.
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