The Behalf Guide to Small Business Black Friday
Black Friday is going to look different in 2020. The large swathes of people charging into stores after their Thanksgiving dinner (or, increasingly, before) will halt this year, as Black Friday mainstays like Target, Kohl’s, and Walmart declined to host in-person Black Friday deals.
This fact will be apparent in Black Friday sales as well.
So what exactly does this mean for your business? The idea of ‘small business’ Black Friday isn’t exactly new, but it is undoubtedly growing in popularity. And while COVID-19 may have dealt a blow to small businesses, this is one opportunity that you can take advantage of despite the pandemic. So, how do you run a successful Black Friday campaign? Here are some tips on positioning your business to have a successful sale.
1. Make sure your website is eCommerce ready.
People will generally refrain from shopping in-person. As mentioned above, big-box stores such as Walmart, Target, and others are nixing in-store sales.
Don’t have a website?
The costs of running a website nowadays are low. Shopify, BigCommerce, Magento are three reliable options. They have simple tutorials that teach you how to set up your website right the first time, so there are no headaches later. Using services that are built to support eCommerce websites makes it easier than ever to run your own online store.
Already have a website, but can’t sell directly through it?
Take the extra step and set up an eCommerce store. This will allow your customers to buy directly from your business with the click of a button while shopping safely from their home or office. BigCommerce, Magento, and Shopify all come with built-in online stores.
2. Consider starting your sales earlier than Black Friday.
It seems like with every year that comes and goes, Black Friday sales start earlier and earlier. Amazon, Walmart, and Best Buy began ‘pre-Black Friday’ sales in mid-October. If you want to make a splash in the shopping season, you don’t have to start after the turkey has been eaten. Try starting sales a few weeks before. Get shoppers thinking about your business and what you have to offer before we even hit Black Friday.
In 2019, *93.2 million shoppers made online Black Friday purchases. Remember that each shopper has a budget. Though people tend to overspend on holiday shopping, there is still usually a hard stop on spending at a certain point. Keep your competitors in mind. If other businesses are hosting their sales early, you might want to follow suit. Your sale could be much less appealing by Black Friday if your competitors start their messaging early and your shared customers have already transacted with them.
3. Black Friday marketing will be critical. But which channel is best for your business?
Marketing can take many forms, and it can be challenging to keep up with all the latest trends. On the most basic level, it’s essential to understand your audience. Many marketers will tell you digital marketing is the only way to go. But that’s not always the case.
If your primary customer is over 70 years old, social media is not your best bet. Instead, a radio commercial or local TV commercial may suit your needs better. On the other hand, if your average customer is 21-29, digital marketing is king. If your business serves other businesses, you might want to reach out to the local chamber of commerce for a listing in their newsletter. Take some time to consider your audience and what you’re selling. Which demographic do your products appeal to and how often are they buying?
Traditional Marketing Channels
Billboards, radio, and television ads are relatively straightforward. Traditional advertising has been around since the dawn of man. If you determine that your Black Friday audience would benefit more from traditional marketing, HubSpot has a good read on traditional marketing strategies that are worth the effort. You can create a radio ad sharing your Black Friday deals, as you can with a television commercial. But there’s one thing those traditional marketing channels can’t do – deliver people directly to your website. That’s where digital marketing comes in.
Digital Marketing for Black Friday
Digital marketing is new and fresh relative to traditional marketing. Every business should have a social media presence. Service-based businesses can thrive off of Yelp reviews. Google My Business and Trustpilot listings can give customers insight into any category of B2C and B2B businesses. In addition, there are the usual social media sites like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Tik Tok and YouTube.
Social Media Marketing for Black Friday
You may think it’s tedious, and if you have a very small business, even useless. But a substantial social media presence can bridge the gap between your business and your customers. At the very least, social media profiles can make sharing contact information and business hours more accessible.
If you don’t have a social media account for your business, make one. Don’t forget to use hashtags to gain visibility on your posts. Black Friday will have many targeted hashtags, such as #BlackFridayWeek, #BlackFridaySales, #BlackFridayDeals, #SmallBusinessSaturday #BlackFridayDiscounts #CyberMonday etc. You can use free apps like Hashtagger to research hashtags that are specific to your business to better target your ideal customer. Don’t miss out on the action.
Email Marketing for Black Friday
Aside from social media, email marketing can play a large role in your small business Black Friday success. For a thorough guide and best practices, see this HubSpot guide.
Email marketing is more than just sending tons of emails to potential customers, hoping they open them up and head to your website. In fact, you send too many emails, your customers might think it’s spam.
Here are 3 steps to make sure your Black Friday email marketing is a success:
- Include clear, uncomplicated visuals. Think simple color palettes, easy-to-read fonts, and leave some breathing room between images and text.
- State an explicit value proposition. Why should your customer buy your product instead of someone else’s, and why should they do it now?
- Include a call to action. What is it that you want your customers to do after they’ve read your email? Be super clear and spell it out for them! For example, “Shop 50% off now” or “Click Here to Access our Black Friday Deals.”
With these tips in mind, you and your business will be ready to compete this holiday shopping season.
* This post is for informational purposes only, not financial advice. Any reference to a web site of another party, does not constitute or imply endorsement.