Last year in the UK, Black Friday saw shoppers spend £1.4bn online, an increase of more than 11% from 2016 [1]. In the US, last year’s Cyber Monday deals drove $6.59bn of online spending in a single day [2]. Black Friday and Cyber Monday present significant opportunities for retailers, so ensuring your website is fully prepared for this year’s primary shopping event is critical.

Spread the word

If you want your customers to take advantage of your Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals, you need to let them know they’re happening. Without a Black Friday marketing strategy, your audience won’t have their wallets ready to start spending.

Drive curiosity and boost future engagement by encouraging your audience to sign up to receive notification of new deals, without going into detail about what those deals will entail

Streamline your sales funnel by encouraging use of your site’s wishlisting capabilities. This will also enable you to contact customers directly if the items they’re interested in are discounted.

If your platform supports affiliates, running a limited-stock pre-sale will help you to drive additional sales during the main event

Test, test, and test again

Load testing will ensure your site is fully optimised for peak shopping days. Remember, even small refinements can make measurable differences, so repeating these tests methodically will drive positive results in the long term. Also, don’t underestimate the strain your servers will be under. Understanding the potential impact of traffic spikes is critical.

You should also conduct a period of user testing to ensure that your user experience (UX) is primed to guarantee a seamless journey for every customer. Every inappropriate UX decision is magnified tenfold during big events, so empowering yourself with an understanding of the refinements that could be made as early as possible will give you time to make improvements that will significantly benefit your metrics and sales.

Don’t go all in, all at once

Scheduling your deals will allow you to maximise the whole Black Friday weekend. As well as encouraging repeat customers, you’ll have some flexibility to extend your deals to out-perform your competitors. Make sure you reserve some of your best offers for early morning, lunchtime, and evening, as some of your customers may not be able to shop when they’re at work.

Communicating the time-sensitivity of your deals by utilising countdown timers and illustrating how much stock you have available at the deal price will encourage impulse purchases. If you provide next day delivery, promote this too because it might be the deciding factor that prompts someone to purchase from you and not one of your competitors.

Don’t neglect SEO

Optimising your content for search engines will enhance your discoverability and help your customers to easily locate the products and deals they’re looking for.

Research niche event and product keywords and phrases
Create detailed product descriptions
Integrate target keywords into meta descriptions
Utilise Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI) keywords for product descriptions

As Black Friday will channel many new potential customers to your website, it’s vital to communicate that you’re trustworthy and security-conscious. As well as making sure that your contact page, shipping information, returns policy and FAQs are visible and up to date, incorporating testimonials, company history and team profiles will enhance your credibility and drive additional sales.

[1] https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-42143842
[2] https://www.cnbc.com/2017/11/28/a-record-6-point-59-billion-spent-online-on-cyber-monday-making-us-history.html