Is Cyber Monday the new Black (Friday)?
Research shows that an increasing number of shoppers are preferring to avoid the foot traffic and do the majority of their shopping online. Hellooo free shipping.
By just 10 a.m on Cyber Monday 2017, customers had already bought nearly a billion dollars’ worth of goods online. (CNBC)
Shopify alone reported over $1.5 billion on Cyber Monday, not including the other three days of BFCM weekend. (Shopify)
Whether you’re only having sales on Cyber Monday or promoting your products all weekend, the holiday season is a lot to prepare for, especially for multi-channel brick and mortar stores. This BCFM 2019, here’s what you need to know about having an online storefront in 2019.
Prep For Additional Web Traffic
A site that’s crashed from too much web traffic is as good as having no site at all. Sales that can’t be made can result in thousands of dollars of lost profit. Amazon lost about $100 million in sales on the 2018 Prime Day because of crashes due to high traffic.
To prepare for higher traffic (if you have your own hosting site. If you use another platform like Shopify, Amazon, Etsy, etc., you are relying on them to keep the website running smoothly) it is recommended to do the following: Get a CDN to keep the website running, back up your site on a cloud server, and update your server and software. For more on website crashes, check out this page.
Storefront VS Product Advertising
Digital advertising, especially through social media, has done wonders for increasing eCommerce growth. Sellers can advertise a best-selling products and increase conversion rates with direct links to shop online. But just advertising best-sellers could be limiting your sales.
Instead of advertising one product, consider advertising your whole online storefront. A carousel Instagram post of multiple images can help display the variety of products you offer, but a facebook add about your brand can draw people to your page, encouraging them to buy multiple items for free shipping. A clean holiday graphic is still important, but think about your storefront over your individual products.
Increased Cyber Security
Better SEO increases your discoverability, both for customers and hackers. The more attention your website attracts, the more likely you are to be a target for those looking to steal credit card information and other private business information. According to Sucuri Blog:
“By far the most common attacks against websites are entirely automated. Many of these attacks rely on users to have only default settings. This means that you can avoid a large number of attacks simply by changing the default settings when installing your CMS of choice.”
For ten other top website security musts for BFCM weekend, read the rest of their blog here.
Discounts to Stay Competitive
Lowering prices makes you more money? When the competition is high, yes. Having the lowest price (or relatively low but with great reviews, shipping etc.) will increase the number of sales you make. While the profit on each is lower, the volume is greater. By offering sales and discounting merchandise, your products will stay at the top of discoverability search engines, and the top of consumers’ carts.
Staff For Surge In Sales
If you’re already thinking about the future after holiday shopping, you’re thinking about creating long-term customers from the new shoppers. The best way to retain these first time customers is to give them excellent customer service. Staff regarding customer service and shipping and fulfillment should be a priority during these busy months.
Additionally, this surge in sales is a prime time to capture emails for drip marketing year-round. Not everyone will want to stay up to date, but excellent content and marketing can help those on the fence stay. Capturing emails is easily done with a first time customer discount for entering their email.
The cost of advertising increases dramatically during the holidays, everybody is looking to grab the attention of open wallet shoppers. It’s best to boost your SEO early on, before the competition gets fierce, but being late to the game doesn’t mean it’s game over. Other ways to get discovered include getting your product featured in gift idea posts from popular bloggers, influencer shoutouts, shareable social content, and many other creative options.
Your product will likely have a niche. Social media platforms also have a niche demographic. For example, Pinterest would have 20-40 year old women, Facebook would best reach adults, Instagram Millennials and Gen Z. Before throwing your advertising money on any platform, think about the reach it has.
Expand Product Line
Sites like Amazon and Jet are so popular because it’s a one stop shop for all items, shipping included. What else can you offer to build check out prices? It doesn’t have to be an entirely new invention, something as easy as add-ons in different colors or flavors are excellent for stocking stuffers and small thinking-of-you’s for those who don’t know what to gift.