So we know that Black Friday is the day of sales.
Every year, the Friday after Thanksgiving, businesses promote massive discounts for masses of shoppers to take advantage of.
But oftentimes, a lot of small businesses don’t really know how to go about Black Friday or where to start.
Every dollar counts, so you don’t want to just slash prices and kill your margins just for the sake of Black Friday.
So how can you participate and take advantage of the biggest shopping day of the year while still turning a profit?
We’re answering that question in this post and sharing the top Black Friday marketing ideas and strategies for small businesses.
But before we get into how you can run your Black Friday campaigns, let’s start by identifying the following first.
- Contrary to what many entrepreneurs may think, Black Friday is not just for eCommerce and retail stores.
- Pick one of two goals that are a top priority for your business and orient your Black Friday promotion to help you accomplish that goal.
- While the majority of online sales still come from a desktop, it is followed closely behind by tablets and smartphones.
What Customers Are Usually Looking For With Black Friday Sales
One study found that these were the top factors that influence buyers’ decisions during Black Friday:
- 49% said free shipping
- 36% said promotions and limited-time sales
- 21% said an easy-to-use website or app
- And 20% said the option to buy online and pick up in-store
So before you even start brainstorming Black Friday marketing ideas and planning your strategy…
…it’s important to keep in mind what customers actually want.
And you can take this a step further by applying these stats to your specific target market.
Ask yourself how can you apply this to your business?
Because contrary to what many entrepreneurs may think, Black Friday is not just for eCommerce and retail stores.
Free shipping for a B2B or service-based company could equate to a free consultation or waiving an onboarding fee.
A limited-time sale could equate to a limited-time discounted service and so on.
So take these stats and sit with them for a moment to determine what it is that your specific target audience would find valuable from you on Black Friday.
By the way, if you want to learn more eCommerce tips, then read this post next.
How To Align Your Black Friday Marketing Plans With Your Business Goals
Instead of blindly going into Black Friday just marking down stuff for the sake of creating discounts…
…you need to instead make Black Friday work for your overall business goals.
We’re going to ask a series of questions and see if any of these apply to you.
- Do you need to increase your existing customer base and find new customers?
- Do you need to re-engage past customers who have been dormant with your brand for a while?
- Do you need to get new and old customers alike ready to purchase from you for the Christmas season?
- Do you have a lot of old stock from previous seasons taking up storage that you need to get rid of?
You may have found yourself answering “yes” to more than one of these questions!
Pick one of two goals that are a top priority for your business and orient your Black Friday promotion to help you accomplish that goal.
So on that note, we want to talk about some Black Friday marketing ideas next…
…but before that, have you seen our new social media ads training course? If not, that is definitely something you need to check out after this.
Black Friday Marketing Ideas & Strategies To Help Meet Your Goals
Idea #1: Follow the traditional route of offering a discount
For the first one on our list of Black Friday marketing ideas, you can do this in several ways, some of which save your profit margins more than others.
So let’s go through some different ways you can offer a discount.
a. You can run a sitewide discount where everything you offer is on sale.
This is usually appealing to buyers but only if the discount is pretty strong. A sitewide discount of 10% isn’t really going to do much.
One study found that U.S. consumers expect the average Black Friday discount to be between 26 and 50 percent of the original value.
So if you can’t reasonably extend a discount that big across all of your products, let’s look at some more options.
b. You can stagger your discounts.
This is so that you are offering a smaller discount on newer items, and a bigger discount on old, clearance items that you just need to get rid of anyway.
We’ve even seen some websites just advertise their existing clearance page as their Black Friday sales page.
So if your goal from earlier was to get rid of some old stock taking up space, this might be a good way to go for you.
c. Another option is you can set a required, minimum price customers have to spend to get a discount.
This is usually referred to as a “Spend more, save more campaign.”
One way product-based businesses can do this is to create bundles with your products.
For example, in this ad, they’re throwing in a couple of games with the console system to justify the price and make the deal “better.”
If you’re a service-based business, you could say “Get these 2 services to get 15% off.”
The trick here is to set the minimum price point to a number that is larger than your average order value…
…and enough to cover costs so that you’re still profiting.
So those were a few ways you can offer discounts on your products or services.
Idea #2: Cater to your loyalty program
Next on our list of Black Friday marketing ideas are loyalty programs.
And if you don’t have one, now may be a good time to make one.
A loyalty program is a marketing strategy in which the buyers collect points for every purchase.
And eventually, after they get enough points, they get either a free gift or a discount.
We see businesses like Starbucks and Chick-fil-A doing this with their app reward program.
And some people live for the free chai latte with almond milk and the free chicken sandwich that they can get…
…from the points they garner at those two places.
Service-based businesses can easily implement a loyalty program too.
You can do this by offering points for every $50 they spend with you, for example, and then offer a discount or freebie whenever they reach 500 points.
You can create a point system based on whatever works for you.
Going back to Chick-fil-A, for example, they have different membership tiers.
So essentially, you have to continue spending with them more often to reach the next tier. And each tier gets you different benefits.
- The basic member gets 10 points for every $1 spent.
- The silver member gets 11 points per $1 spent.
- The red member gets 12 points per $1 spent.
- The signature member gets 13 points per $1 spent.
Now there are other benefits that come with each tier too, but as far as loyalty points, that’s what the tiers look like.
You then use those points to redeem free items.
In this example, you can see it has a little less than 600 points right now, so these are the freebies available to the user.
So those are some examples of how you could conduct your own loyalty program.
The Black Friday edition here would be to offer double loyalty points on all purchases made that day.
It would encourage sales at no discount from you, and it would also encourage people to join your loyalty program. if they haven’t already.
Thus, encouraging new customers and email collection if those were some of your goals.
Idea #3: Donate some of your profit to charity
Last on our list of Black Friday marketing ideas involves charities.
Again, this is a strategy that allows buyers to purchase things from you at full price…
…and the incentive for them is to feel like they’re making a purchase that makes a difference.
In our social media branding post, we talked about how 13% of consumers would pay 31-50% more for your products or services…
…if they were under the impression that your business is making a positive impact on the world.
Patagonia is a great example of this.
Check out this story from when they had record-breaking Black Friday sales. They said:
“Last week, when we announced we’d give 100 percent of our global retail and online Black Friday sales…
…directly to grassroots nonprofits working on the frontlines to protect our air, water and soil for future generations…
…we heard from many of our customers calling it a “fundraiser for the earth.”
We’re humbled to report the response was beyond expectations: With your help, Patagonia reached a record-breaking $10 million in sales.
We expected to reach $2 million in sales—we beat that expectation five times over.”
In 2021, people care about what a brand’s values are.
And for Patagonia, it made perfect sense that the environment is a cause they would advocate for given the nature of their outdoor brand.
So those are some Black Friday marketing ideas and strategies you can put to use. Which one are you leaning more towards using?
7 Quick Tips To Prepare For Black Friday
1. Optimize your website for mobile
A lot of businesses did this anyway as a result of 2020.
But if you haven’t, make sure your mobile website design is easy-to-navigate, is clear in CTA, and is just as functional on mobile as it is on desktop.
While the majority of online sales still come from a desktop, it is followed closely behind by tablets and smartphones.
Whether you’re B2C or B2B, don’t lose out on customers just because your website doesn’t look right or load fast for the device they’re on.
2. Create a Black Friday gift guide
Give users ideas on how they can take care of their Christmas shopping list with their Black Friday purchases from you.
If you’re service-based, you can accomplish this with gift cards.
But either way, you want to paint your products or services as “giftable.”
And depending on when you’re reading this post, you can get a jumpstart on the next Black Friday.
You can do this by creating a content page or blog for it on your website that spends all year garnering SEO value.
This is in the hopes that by the fall of next year when people start Googling “black Friday gift ideas”…
…your page can rank higher in the search results and send some free traffic your way!
3. Countdown deals
If you’re running multiple deals or discounts, stagger when they’ll be available to keep people coming back to your site.
This is often referred to as countdown deals.
We see companies like Amazon do this a lot where they’ll run Black Friday deals all week where the firestick is on sale on Monday…
…but the ring video doorbell won’t be discounted until Tuesday.
This increases how many times consumers are coming back to your site.
And the more they’re on your site, the more likely they are to make another purchase.
4. Prepare your ads
If you intend on running Facebook or Google ads for Black Friday, make sure you’ve got everything in both of those ad accounts squared away now.
Are your pixels installed correctly? If you’re using landing pages, are those being tracked properly?
Speaking of Facebook Pixel, check out this post next for a full tutorial on how to set it up correctly on your web pages.
Have your payment methods in those accounts been verified?
If you sell products, has your Facebook catalog or Google merchant feed been set up and approved?
Even if you know how to set up things pretty quickly…
…there are several things that Facebook and Google have to approve in the advertising process, which often takes days.
And you don’t want to be rushing them 3 days before Black Friday wondering why they haven’t approved XYZ for you yet.
So go ahead and take care of all that, now.
5. Create a Black Friday-specific landing page
This is for you to collect email subscribers.
You can provide incentives by saying email subscribers will have first access to Black Friday deals, encouraging users to sign up so that they don’t miss out.
A great way to do this is to include an email popup on the most popular pages of your website…
…with details encouraging users to sign up if they want the Black Friday discounts before the masses make everything sell out.
Also, don’t forget to do landing page optimization to generate better results.
We would advise you to plan and schedule your content a month in advance, like we do for our clients.
But if you can’t get a whole month out, then at the very least get your Black Friday posts scheduled.
You’re going to be busy that week.
Both with business stuff and with your own personal Thanksgiving plans.
So do yourself a favor and listen to us, and take care of anything that can be scheduled in advance, now.
7. Use a gateway product
This is to encourage other bigger purchases.
This is usually a smaller buy, one that’s easy for the customer to swallow that gets them used to purchasing from you.
Again, we see Amazon do this a lot. Look at the photo we shared earlier.
They’ve got the firestick and echo dot both listed for about $25 each surrounded by-products that are upwards of $60-$180 each.
They’re grouping these products together to normalize buying more than one of them.
For small businesses where their audience is usually still building trust in the brand…
…once a customer has made a purchase from you, there’s less hesitation to buy another product from you again.
Try These Black Friday Marketing Ideas!
And that about wraps all our of Black Friday marketing ideas and tips for you.
If you need more help with marketing your small business (not only this Black Friday), then work with our digital marketing agency today.
Contact us now at 404-596-7925.