Cyber Monday, Black Friday’s technologically savvier cousin, is right around the corner. (Seriously, it falls on December 1 this year.)
For online sellers, this means it’s time to stop dreaming of all that turkey you’re about to eat (or tofurkey, if you’re like me) and get your ass into high gear.
Still not motivated? These stats from last year's Cyber Monday might help:
- 2013 Cyber Monday sales totaled $2.29 billion.
- Social media drove $148 million in sales between Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday.
Sounds even tastier than that turkey, right? Let's get this last-minute guide to Cyber Monday started!
Upload Your Products ASAP
You know how you initially uploaded three of your products to your ecommerce site or online shop with the mental promise that you’d get to the other 30 at some point soon?
Well, now it's months later, and you’re still offering only a few products online, when you really have a much wider and more appealing selection offline. Remember, the more products you have for sale, the more credible your business looks. And the more likely it is for you to appeal to a wider audience.
If the idea of getting all of your products up at once is overwhelming, set aside 30 minutes to an hour each night to ensure you’ve made some serious progress come Cyber Monday. Don't forget that great product descriptions as well as captivating images can make a big difference in the amount of sales you get too.
Now pour yourself a glass of wine (or two, if you’re like me) and start uploading products like it’s your job. (Because it kinda is.)
Don't Go Crazy With Discounts
We all know that consumers are going to be looking for smoking deals this day, but don’t let that pressure you into offering discounts you can’t afford. (You know the old saying, "Never write a check that your ass can't cash"?)
Larger brands can easily discount their entire product line if they want to, but if a small business owner does that, it can kill their profit margin almost instantly. (But at least it'll be a quick death?) Instead, why not tier your discounts based on how much a consumer spends? For example: spend $100, get $20 off, spend $50, get $10 off.
You can also give gift cards instead of an immediate discount. Spend $200 and receive a $50 gift card with your online order.
Send Out an Email Blast
Email marketing is undoubtedly your friend when it comes to everyday marketing tactics. But it’s your best friend when it comes to the big, profitable shopping days like Cyber Monday.
Here’s what you need to do:
- First, define your deal. (E.g., all sweaters are 25% off.)
- Second, write persuasive copy. And give your deal urgency. For example: Warm, cozy, stylish… and 25% off?! That’s right! Our entire line of sweaters is on sale for one glorious day only! Get this great deal on Cyber Monday by using the promo code LETSCYBER at checkout. Browse our sweater selection now.
- Third, use an eye-catching subject line. (E.g., Our best Cyber Monday deal ever)
Send this email a few days before the sale to drum up interest and then send another the day-of with revised copy, like this example below:
- Subject line: Hurry! 25% off sweaters today only
- Body of email: It’s here! It’s here! Cyber Monday is upon us and you know what that means… 25% off our entire inventory of sweaters. But, hurry, you’ve only got today to score this smoking deal. Enter promo code LETSCYBER at checkout. Shop now.
Always include a call to action (e.g., browse now, shop now) and be sure to include a direct link to your online shop for easy purchasing before sending your emails!
Promote Heavily on Social Media
Of course, you’ll want to promote your products and deal(s) on social media in advance, but a heavy push the day-of is also going to be important.
Without over-killing it and annoying your followers, a few tweets and posts throughout the day will help remind your target market to check out what you have to offer.
According to PFS Web, online sales peak beginning at 11 a.m. EST on Cyber Monday and hold strong until late in the evening, meaning it would be smart for you to be on the computer continually this day, tweeting, sharing, pinning, Instagramming (and so on) your deal along with product pictures.
Use hashtags on applicable sites (#cybermonday and #cybermondaydeals) to help deal-seekers find you. Be on hand to reply to customers and join in on the online conversations to help you drive sales and engage with shoppers.
Put Down That Pie and Get Started
Just kidding. You can totally do all of the above whilst eating any type of pie, but pumpkin is preferable. (Heavy on the whipped cream.)
What's most important is that you actually give your small business a fighting chance to be seen and heard, not only on Cyber Monday, but throughout the holiday season.
And you can do this by creating a marketing plan of attack (ahem, like the one above) and committing to helping it succeed by working on it a bit every day.
Continue on with special incentives throughout December, including email blasts and social media posts to help ensure this holiday season is your best, and most profitable one, yet!
Share your questions below on how to increase Cyber Monday sales.