Almost half of all South African adults plan to participate in this year's Black Friday shopping period. And for business owners and leaders, this is a pretty big deal.
With a relatively even purchasing-demographic distribution (slightly skewed to younger males), Black Friday represents an opportunity for businesses to engage with their customer base, promote their brand and bolster fourth-quarter sales.
But, with this annual opportunity just around the corner, is your business Black Friday ready?
Check out our Hellopeter tips to ensure your business realises maximum value this Black Friday.
Like any contact sport, the Black Friday market share competition is fierce. After all, why wouldn't anyone choose to pay less?
So, to guarantee you're fully geared to grab your share of Black Friday sales, ensure that your pre-Black Friday communications and efforts are targeted to highlight the value offer your brand has put together.
Many Black Friday customers have been planning their purchases for months and understand that to take full advantage, they must have a detailed, organised plan of attack.
To run a successful Black Friday campaign, you should communicate to your potential customer base exactly when your sales will start and the exact savings they can expect.
Remember, many people assume that businesses spike their prices pre-Black Friday to present seemingly larger Black Friday savings. Communicate clearly to your customer base that your brand would never try to deceive or take advantage of them—you're offering real value!
Now you also need to build the best team to handle the mad dash that is Black Friday. You want to ensure that you double down on efforts. Don't try and get through Black Friday with the same amount of staff! You need all hands on deck to ensure your customers are served quickly and efficiently, so they leave with a smile.
Furthermore, set aside the time and expense to ensure your sales and customer service staff, both online and on your brick-and-mortar site, are fully trained to deal with the influx of harried and often difficult customers.
Remember, Black Friday isn't just a once-off event—it's an opportunity to show off your retail solutions to an entirely new, motivated cohort of potential consumers.
So, make sure your pre-game prep sets your business up to convert as many Black Friday once-off shoppers into loyal brand advocates who've fallen in love with how you do business.
Most people tend to avoid browsing during Black Friday. There's a recognition that the real discount opportunities are limited, so shoppers often have a very specific, targeted approach to Black Friday.
To realise maximum value for your business while offering convenience and efficiency for your customers, plan your sales strategy around the product base you intend to focus on.
Data suggests that for many businesses, Black Friday is driven by big-ticket items like, for example, electronics. Therefore, you should ensure your Black Friday communications are geared not only to highlighting specific, high-value or high-traffic products but also to the savings customers can realise if they choose your specific Black Friday deals.
Generic, brand-narrative-focused communications are all well and good, but for Black Friday, consider limiting your 'education' and 'brand’-focused efforts to secondary communications. Instead, place a heavy focus on practical, value-emphasising communications.
Remember that, during the Black Friday rush specifically, no one is checking for your brand history. So, get to the point, and save the brand-building communications for another campaign.
*statistics courtesy of hostreviews.co.uk.
When was the last time you checked your site speed and quality? If your pre-game Black Friday prep is well executed, you should be expecting high volumes of traffic to your site.
Losing Black Friday sales and damaging your brand reputation due to site crashes or slow site speeds is entirely avoidable!
In today's connected marketplace, finding professionals to test and upgrade your site and digital presence is affordable and super convenient if you know where to look!
People like being treated like human beings, instead of just another number or sale. With today's readily affordable and accessible software solutions, businesses have access to a huge amount of their customers' personal data—from A/B-tested campaign performance to individual shopping and engagement histories, from brand and product preferences to a physical location and online behaviours.
Ensure your IT and marketing teams are geared to extracting actionable, personalised information to drive your Black Friday email, engagement and SMS strategies.
Consumers enjoy being 'seen'. Market your Black Friday offerings in as personalised and specific a way as possible. This includes, of course, using their first names, even in bulk-communication sends and marketing to them based on their purchasing history.
If, for example, a particular customer has purchased Samsung products consistently, that offers insight into what personalised marketing communications will drive them to action.
Test and analyse all your communications during the year to identify which performed best, why they performed well, and what insights you can apply to your Black Friday strategy.
Black Friday should cause (healthy) competition between retailers. After all, it all comes down to who has the best value proposition. But what if shops selling similar items manage to get the same goods at the same price point?
Think of it from a consumer's point of view: if two retailers both offer the same Bluetooth headphones for the same special Black Friday price, how would you choose which business to go with? Simple—by checking how they deal with their consumers via their online ratings and reputation.
Business A never checks in with its consumers online. They don't answer when someone leaves a compliment or a complaint. Or, when they do, they seem to make excuses without offering recompense or a solution.
On the other hand, Business B regularly responds to and acknowledges its consumer's reviews (good and bad). They make an effort to ensure their customers feel appreciated and listened to. When they drop the ball, they are quick to acknowledge the issue and just as quick to offer a solution.
So, when competition is Black Friday fierce, your business's online reputation management is the difference between a sale and a pass. Remember that up to 90% of your customers will use online reviews to inform their consumer choices.
Here are our top tips for managing your online reputation during Black Friday.
Whether it's a raving review or a raving mad review, ensure your response time is the same. Someone took the time out of their day to help you improve your business, and they deserve a response.
While something may not be such a big deal to you, it could be a big deal to a consumer. Make sure you respond with empathy and respect.
By offering solutions, you're acknowledging your customer's experience.
It's great for consumers to come onto your social media page or website and see happy customers. Our Hellopeter Widget Library is the best way to display five-star reviews on your website to grow your Social Proof and attract more sales.
Running a business is hard enough as it is. Want to get access to tools that will make your life so much easier? Leverage our online review technology by signing up for a free Hellopeter Business account today.