Thanksgiving is next week, which means the e-commerce world is frantically preparing for Black Friday and Cyber Monday. While others prepare to gorge on turkey and spend some serious dough, are you sure your store is ready for the rush? Here’s some quick tips to get your store in shape for the busiest shopping days of the year!
Prepare Your Store
Do you have your Black Friday and Cyber Monday graphics ready to go? Do you know the plan for pushing them live? Have you tested the look-and-feel out in a development environment?
Are your offers ready? Do the coupon codes work? Have you checked to make sure the appropriate limitations on those codes are in place? And, most importantly, is your site secured?
If you don’t already have robust keywords in your store, now is the time to add some! Have you properly configured Google Search Console and Bing Webmaster Tools? These tools provide starting points for seeing what the major search engines know about your site. You can then use a good SEO mod, or tools built-in to your cart to make sure your key words have been properly added and are positively affecting your search standings.
If your business is tight on cash flow, that doesn’t mean there’s nothing you can do! A little bit goes a long way, and since SEO should be a major component of any sales strategy in e-Commerce, if you’ve neglected this, there’s no time like the present to step up and make your site search-friendly.
Prepare for the Worst
What’s your Black Friday disaster plan? Do you have support staff on standby? What will do you if you run out of stock? Is your fulfillment team ready to get those Black Friday and Cyber Monday orders to customers?
And what about technical problems? Do you know what to do if the store is crashing on Black Friday? Do you have site backups? What about the database? One small error can massively mess that up for the whole weekend if you don’t have a contingency plan in place.
Your most likely source of problems on Black Friday or Cyber Monday will be the customers. Do you lay out your store policies on returns and shipping, and list your Holiday delivery deadlines in a clear manner on your site? Making sure your policies are clear can make working with unhappy customers easier and less time consuming post-holiday.
Aim for the Best
You should aim to give your customers a great shopping experience on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. If you haven’t refreshed your store’s look and feel in some time, now is not the time to try radical changes, but small quality of life improvements can go a long way.
- Do you have mobile friendly pages? Will your Black Friday / Cyber Monday images and promotions look nice on mobile devices?
- Do you have abandoned cart reminders enabled, so that you can re-capture those customers that are on the fence about their purchase?
- Are you offering a loyalty program, and rewarding your loyal customers?
And, last but not least… social media. Are you engaging with your customers about what deals you’re bringing to them this Black Friday / Cyber Monday? Much of your attention this week and in the run-up to Black Friday should be on how you can capture your (future) customer’s attention next weekend. Here are some tips:
Appeal to the vanishing deal!
Black Friday and Cyber Monday are over fast… encourage quick purchases by appealing to your customers sense of urgency and implying scarcity of your products.
Update Your Profiles
Give your social media presence a quick make-over with new graphics, and make sure your information and correct and concise.
Use Your Blog
Write guides (like this one) in the run-up to your Black Friday / Cyber Monday deals. Review products you want to sell, or create short tutorial videos to soak up the customer’s attention.
Do your homework. There’s tons of amazing guides! Her’s just a few to get you started:
When in doubt, seek help!
BCS Engineering is staffed with e-Commerce experts that have been working in the field since 2004. If you’re not sure you’re ready, or if you just want to get some feedback about a particular issue, we’re here to help you survive Black Friday and BEYOND! Contact us today to see how we can help you!