Delivering Black Friday and Cyber Monday messages over time results in more sales and website traffic, according to a new UK study by Conversant. Results prove the ideal time to launch campaigns is in September. Given that UK consumer behaviour more closely reflects that of Canadian consumers than American consumer behaviour, we can assume that would be the case here as well.
September Marketing Maximizes Black Friday Sales & Traffic
When consumers receive promotional messages in September, they are three times more likely to buy products and services during Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Some verticals report even higher sales, including the fashion industry, which found their market is six times more likely to purchase if they’re approached earlier.
Additionally, the number of consumers visiting websites on Black Friday and Cyber Monday in 2017 was four times higher for those messaged consistently starting in September. Fashion brands received eight times more website traffic as a direct result of early campaigns. An astounding 56 percent of consumers visited the brands’ websites as a result of a sustained September campaign launch, compared with only 13 percent of those consumers who weren’t contacted until November.
“With so many brands vying for consumers’ limited attention during this peak period, the most successful strategy to ensure that your brand is noticed is to start gradually building up that awareness and to form a relationship with the consumer over time,” suggests Elliott Clayton, Senior Vice President Media UK at Conversant.
The study also emphasized the importance of an early campaign optimized for both mobile and desktop devices. Fifty-six percent of those surveyed said they often see an advertisement on one device, but actually purchase on another device during Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales. For example, they may see an ad while scrolling through their Twitter feed on their home computer in September, but will actually purchase the advertised item at work with their mobile phone when the deal goes live.
Ecommerce conversions involving multiple devices has increased overall. In 2016, 29 percent of sales involved multiple devices. In 2017, this proportion increased to 57 percent. Sixty-two percent of sales in December of last year involved multiple devices, up from 38 percent in 2016.
Promote Early Without Alienating Consumers
Canadian consumers often object to anything resembling early holiday promotions, especially before Remembrance Day. The best way to avoid alienating them is to refrain from mentioning the holidays or using holiday images in our early Black Friday campaigns. However, that doesn’t mean we can’t subtly work it into our marketing strategy in other ways.
- Feature gift items in Black Friday deals and focus on them when you advertise on social media. Starting early offers the opportunity to adjust your campaigns based on solid data from your specific target market.
- Begin your free or flat-rate shipping holiday campaigns.
- Subtly tailor your blog content to gift shopping topics, such as product comparisons, reviews or guides.
- Rev up your eMail marketing without mentioning the holidays. It’s a good time of year to invest in professional email marketing tools, such as Aweber.
- Build digital sales funnels around online gift shopping without mentioning the holidays specifically. Thrive Themes Funnels is a budget-friendly tool for building highly profitable digital sales funnels.
To further ensure consumers flock to your Black Friday sale, make them an offer they can’t refuse. You can promote your sale with generic promotions, such as “…up to 75% off” or offer to beat any advertised price. You may find it’s more effective to focus on a few popular products as well.
Become Part of Their Plan
Strategic Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping is a common practice that involves research and planning prior to the events. Retailers like to keep their deals a secret so they can’t be undercut. However, grabbing customers early with some inside information will set you apart, and get you on more “can’t miss” consumer shopping lists. It also offers a perfect opportunity to test and adjust your campaigns before you head into the lucrative holiday season. Any possible competitive advantage you can pursue this time of year, is worth the effort.
✔ You may also be interested in reading:
15 Ways to Make Men Merry as they Holiday Shop Online
How to Use Content Marketing to Skyrocket Holiday Sales
Use Organic Local SEO to Increase Foot Traffic (Statistics & Tips)
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Melody McKinnon's formal education is in business management, which she enhanced with more than 60 certifications revolving around business, marketing, health, general sciences and writing. In 25 years of working online, she has owned or managed both educational and ecommerce websites. Her book, 7 Recession Proof Online Businesses to Start From Home, is available on Amazon.
Melody has worked with many businesses & brands in a multitude of capacities. She can often be found on CanadiansInternet.com, CanadianFamily.net and AllNaturalPetCare.com, as well as other quality digital publications. Her content has earned reference links from highly-respected websites, magazines and university textbooks.