Having an online business requieres a lot of hard work. You and your team need to prepare ahead of time for any specials, big sales or a new product presentation. You also need to take available materials and inventory if your business specializes in selling products. And no other season is as important as the one we have in a few months. Black Friday.
While Black Friday is dedicated to brick-and-mortar business, many online bussineses decide to extend their sales from the moment Black Friday starts, all the way to the day that really matters, Cyber Monday.
According to CNet, Cyber Monday 2021 saw customers spending 1.4% less money when buying products and services over the internet. And, with its total US sales reaching up to $10.7 billion, Cyber Monday has become one of the top gross days in the year to promote your business.
Having a plan for Cyber Monday is a must. Below, you will find some full-proof suggestions to maximize your online store's income this 2022.
1. Online Business: Start Early
The first suggestion on this list that you and your team need to consider is self-promotion. More than half of consumers begin their holiday shopping research as early as the last weeks of October. They want to know which stores offer the best prices and compare them against other stores to get the best deal.
Mid-October is the best time to start promoting coupons, newsletters, or even an online catalog with the best deals you will offer for the Thanksgiving weekend. With this early campaign, customers can make a prompt decision and, if your prices fit their budget, you will get more sales. One last additional tip for this subtopic, try adding a countdown banner to your website that links to all the products you will have on sale for Cyber Monday. It will create expectations and a sense of urgency. Both great for increasing sales.
2. Online Business: Site Performance
A slow site equals low sales. There is nothing more infuriating that slow shopping sites. Sure, some of the slowness may be attributed to our internet speed, but if a webpage is not optimized to recieve big amounts of traffic, chances are it will lose its connection to your server. Moreover, a third of the customers who visit slow pages when shopping are less likely to return to a slow website after that interaction.
Cyber Monday is one of the most internet-populated days of the year. And, since it has been adopted by other countries as well, you can expect your site's traffic to overload with people trying to find the best deals. This overload is the reason you need to check your site's speed and performance.
Two or three weeks before the big day, check your site's health and try to make a purchase as a customer would. Make sure to select a few products and add them to the cart, add a coupon, add a new credit card, select a delivery method, and purchase the items. Basically, you will need to follow the customers' journey through pruchasing a product in your site, with all the disadvantages possible. This demo will give you a live version of what customers will see when purchasing a product. and it can help you identify errors and fix them promptly. You will also need to perform this whole ordeal, ten, five and two days before the big day.
There are plenty of options in the web that can help you find errors without making the demo purchase. Websites like Ubersuggest, can help you track your SEO and also help you fix issues which might affect your site's performance.
3. Online Business: Webpage Options
We are all afraid of what we don't understand. If a webáge is hard to navigate or has its options buried below submenus, customers will prefer to go to another familiar site rather than understand how a webpage works. This reason is why you must try to optimize your webpage before Cyber Monday. Here are a few tips you can implement into your online store:
Payment options. We live in the era of technology. While most of us are still using conventional methods like cash or credit cards, some shoppers prefer digital payment methods such as PayPal, Venmo, or Bitcoin. Try to explore these channels through an expert and, depending on your market, add a few of them.
Shipping options. In the last two years, online sales have skyrocketed, and more people like the idea of getting products delivered to their homes. If you are a local vendor, try to reach out to shipping companies for extra coverage for Cyber Monday and the week after. Also, try to offer overnight or two-day delivery if available. Pick-up at the store is also a great solution.
Make backups. While most of your webpage is in code, consider having a "hard copy" of your product images. In case of a problem, you will always have a backup copy in case the code fails. This suggestion also applies to your homepage banners, recommended products, and general images, like your logo or icons.
Expert markteters recommend not to compare your business to massive enterprises like Amazon, but you can still have competitive prizes and even use their platform to promote your online business.
You also have to consider that most customers make their purchases through the commodity of their hand held device, and your website should be also updated to that front. A great recommendation for mobile sites is to perform the test we mentioned in the second subtopic just to check that everything is running smoothly.
4. Online Business: Description, description, description
In real estate, everything comes down to location. Similarly, in an online store, everything comes down to the description. A product's description is just as important as the product's photographs. You can find some suggestions below to up the description of your articles.
Plan ahead. The first thing you would want to do is check your last year's sales. These sales can give you a perspective on which products sold the most and those you should apply discounts to. Moreover, you can create special Cyber Monday bundles too!
Improve your homepage. As mentioned above, a countdown banner is a perfect tool to add to your homepage. Another great tip is to display discounts. By displaying deals on your homepage, consumers can clearly see in which products they can save more.
Sell with your description. Within the article's webpage, there should be a description tab. In this tab, you will describe the product as detailed as possible, but also will add a little flair to try to sell the products such as:
Limited time only
A few left
Only (x) remaining
Add a chart. If you have bought clothes online before, you have noticed that there is always a chart with all the measurements. These measurements are related to the product, such as length, width, arm length, etc. By adding a chart like this, customers can quickly decide if the product is right for them.
Provide realistic shipping dates. Don't promise if you can't deliver. Be realistic when providing shipping dates to the customers. If the shipping company cannot give you an exact date, try to use a variable system, for example, 2-3 days.
Provide security. Offer your customers a list of safety measures your company is using. These could vary between package handling, employee security, or even COVID-19 regulations.
Some consumers are not sure of what they are going to buy exactly. So a little push in the description might be decisive. In addition, try studying the descriptions of competitor's pages, and if you like something don't be afraid to create your own improved version of it. Just try to keep it on the simple side of things.
5. Online Business: Inventory
Inventory is a given. It would be best if you had more than the right amount of stock two weeks before Cyber Monday. Most importantly, ensure that your inventory is updated on your webpage and in all other services you use, such as Amazon, Etsy, or eBay.
Synchronization is a must when it comes to the selling season. But it is certainly easier said than done, since there are a lot of platforms you need to set beforehand for the synchronization to work. If you manage to sync all the webpages in which you sell your products you can perform tests before Cyber Monday and discover errors within your platforms.
What if I run out of inventory? This question is tricky, as its answer will depend on which type of products you sell. For example, if you sell graphics cards, you will know that there is a temporary shortage and, unfortunately, you will need to put a sign on your website that you are out of stock. On the other side of the spectrum, if you sell products like kitchen appliances, you can opt for a waiting list limited to a certain number of articles after you run out of stock. The waiting list must be limited due to the number of products a provider can deliver to you in a certain amount of time. Be careful and calculate your costs accordingly.
Cyber Monday for Online Businesses
After incorporating all of the tips above into your Cyber Monday plan, all you need to do now is prepare yourself mentally for the high sales season. Expect that some things could go wrong in the holiday season, but having a backup plan for those errors relieves a little bit of pressure. The last tip of this article is just that. Make a list of all the things that can go wrong and elaborate a plan to fix them as fast as possible if the errors present themselves. Overpreparing is not such a bad thing after all.