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The Roaring Tip Sheet: Cyber Monday Marketing and Beyond

Posted on by Melanie Yunk

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The holiday shopping season arrives in a few short weeks and retailers everywhere are shoring up Black Friday and Cyber Monday marketing to maximize revenue during the last two months of the year.

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The last weekend of November has recently evolved into the biggest shopping weekend of the year. The National Retail Federation estimates that in 2014, 87 million people shopped on Black Friday and 127 million people shopped on Cyber Monday. The NRF recently announced November and December 2015 holiday sales projections, which are expected increase 3.7 percent from last year – including an online sales increase of between six to eight percent over 2014.

With November fast approaching, now is the time to finalize holiday marketing and optimize systems to capture a share of the holiday spend. Here are a few tips on Black Friday and Cyber Monday marketing, and beyond, to boost holiday revenue:

Optimize for Mobile: Be where your customers are, when they are there; these days, consumers live on smartphones and tablets. According to IBM’s Digital Analytics Benchmark Reports on Black Friday 2014 and Cyber Monday 2014, online sales set records last year. And for the first time, mobile exceeded PC traffic on Thanksgiving Day and on Black Friday accounted for 49.6 percent of all online traffic. Furthermore, Black Friday mobile sales accounted for 27.9 percent of total online sales, up 28.2 percent over 2013. Not surprising, 2015 is expected to outpace 2014 in terms of mobile traffic and mobile sales.

Tip: Don’t get stuck in the slow lane; optimize websites and
e-commerce backend for mobile… ASAP.

Upgrade your Social Media – Marketers and retailers rely on social media as a key channel to reach customers, and this holiday season will be no different. IBM reported trends across Facebook and Pinterest in 2014 and found Pinterest referrals drove an average of $97.78, and Facebook drove an average of $123.44. These referral dollars are expected to increase in 2015, especially with Pinterest’s recent roll out of Buyable Pins.

Tip: Ensure your social media game is ready! For ideas on social
media tactics for the holidays, consider my post on
Bay Business Help, Six Keys to Holiday Social Media Success.

Offer Improved Services: While getting a great deal is the main concern for shoppers, the improved economy means consumers also consider other factors when purchasing, such as:

  • Is shipping free for online shopping?
  • Are returns free? Convenient?
  • What about online purchases and in-store pickup?
  • Will out-of-stock items be shipped free when back in stock?

Savvy shoppers expect near-instant gratification for next-to-no cost. Amazon Prime, among other services, has trained consumers that anything less than fast and free shipping and easy returns are a reason to look elsewhere.

Tip: Don’t lose potential customers with suboptimal service and
slow and costly shipping; surprise and delight your shoppers
with convenience, no-hassle shopping and free and fast shipping.

Think Beyond Black Friday: In addition to the traditional day after Thanksgiving “shopping holiday,” consider Cyber Monday marketing, and beyond. The entire holiday weekend from Thanksgiving Day, Black Friday, Small Business Saturday all the way through Cyber Monday now accounts for a significant portion of holiday sales. In fact, 2014 saw a decrease in Black Friday spending but an increase in Thanksgiving Day spending. Cyber Monday has grown in popularity and importance over the last few years, too, and saw an 8.5 percent increase from 2013 to 2014. Experts expect these trends to continue. Some retailers are even already offering holiday promotions to create and capitalize on an extra-long shopping season. One example is Best Buy; last weekend the merchant offered a “Prep for the Holidays” appliance sale!

Tip: As you consider your holiday marketing and promotions, broaden
your thinking beyond the usual
major shopping days. Execute promotions
throughout the Thanksgiving weekend and the entire holiday shopping
period to drive sales – perhaps even before Thanksgiving.

Utilize the Latest and Greatest Search Techniques: Ensure your best marketing efforts aren’t all for naught. Write blog posts and create special offer landing pages using proper SEO best practices to always be relevant and take advantage of holiday search traffic.

Tip: Check out our resident SEO expert Kent Yunk’s post on
Holiday Search Campaigns for more information.

Be Prepared: Finally, plan and prepare for all possible outcomes. The holidays are crazy, something unexpected is bound to crop up. Proper preparation serves a business well.

Tip: Read Kent’s essential list of
5 Things to Prepare Your Business For Black Friday Promotions
and Cyber Monday Sales
.

Are you ready to maximize revenue this holiday shopping season? What are your favorite Black Friday and Cyber Monday marketing tips and holiday marketing musts?


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