Everyone know’s that online shopping is huge. It gets bigger every year. From skeptical beginnings, it’s morphed into shopping anytime, anywhere from a smartphone.
Because Cyber Monday is a big deal, you need to plan how you’re going to manage this opportunity. Regardless of the size of your eStore, you’ll need a strategy to maximize profits during the holiday season. And starting your prep work the Wednesday before Thanksgiving is a recipe for disaster.
You can’t just wing it.
Every business is unique and everyone has different marketing budgets. But these are a few of the essential steps you can take to create your own Cyber Monday attack plan.Fine-Tune Your Email Messaging.
Fine-Tune Your Email Messaging
As far as marketing is concerned, email is still relevant. In fact, email is the biggest marketing opportunity you have. According to Kim Stiglitz, from Campaign Monitor:
- Email is 40 times more effective at acquiring new customers than Facebook or Twitter (McKinsey)
- You are 6x more likely to get a click-through from an email campaign than you are from a tweet
- Purchases made as a result of receiving a marketing message, email has the highest conversion rate (66%), when compared to social, direct mail and more (DMA)
With impressive stats, it’s easy to overlook one important factor: you still have to write fantastic emails. And you can always improve your conversion rates with a little tweaking. So take the time to look at your percentages. Keep what works and change what doesn’t. Do some testing now and try again if you’re not getting the conversion rates you’d like.
Add Abandoned Checkout Capabilities
The average online shopping cart abandonment rate is almost 69%. There are many reasons for this and you’ll never be able to retrieve everyone. Yet, you can realistically recapture these sales if you start using an abandoned checkout strategy. After starting a recovery email campaign, BlueMonkey recovered 13% of their abandoned cart sales. That can translate into thousands of dollars worth of sales!
Check with your eCommerce provider to see what capabilities they offer for shoppers who have abandoned their shopping carts. Find another eCommerce provider if they don’t offer any services that tackle this issue.
It’s that important to your bottom line.
Set Up YouTube Sales Opportunities
This one is simply a no brainer. YouTube videos are watched millions of times every day and they have billions of users. Of course, businesses have found a way to monetize YouTube. Sure some are sponsored and some are affiliates, but now there’s the possibility to link sales options directly into each video.
Here’s an example of how this works from Selz:
Think of how powerful this medium is for selling your products? Consumers who care enough to watch your video are more likely to buy something from you since they are already engaged with your brand. And giving them the opportunity to buy something, while they are watching your content, is a great sales opportunity. Just make sure it’s done in an organic way and they don’t feel like they’re watching an infomercial.
There are a million ways you can leverage videos for Cyber Monday. Create how-to videos or announce a special sale on an item you’re using in the video. Just be inventive and give users a sales opportunity when you have their attention.
Start Working on Your Gift Guides
Gift guides are probably the easiest marketing strategy for Cyber Monday. All you need to do is make lists of your products and who they would make great gifts for. They are perfect for the clueless shopper who has no idea what to buy. You simply show them the best products and make the entire shopping experience easy for them.
Here’s one called the Holiday Gift Guide For Your Man, from Laura Trevey:
Be sure to start now on updating your product pictures. You don’t want stale or overused pictures. Keep it fresh, modern, and professional. Plus, you can have a ton of different categories. Top 20 Gifts Under $50 or Best Gifts for Pet Lovers. You can even target niche markets like book lovers, college students, hapless cooks, or even Boston Red Sox fans. All you need is a little imagination.
Laser Focus Your Social Media Strategy
We live in a fantastic world of numbers. You can find stats on almost anything, including which of your social media platforms is the most valuable to your business. This isn’t something you should assume. Even if you’re using organic methods and not paid advertisements, you could still be spending your valuable time on social media platforms that aren’t performing to your expectations.
Ian Cleary, from Razor Social, explains that “Monitoring your social media analytics can make the difference between the success or failure of your social media presence”. Both Facebook and Twitter have tools and reports that will help you understand your social media performance. Do you want to spend time trying to build a Facebook community when Twitter is the clear winner in engagement? Or do you switch to visual-based social media like Pinterest or Instagram? Should you be on the same social media platforms as your competitors?
There are a lot of variables in social media marketing. You can’t just wing it and expect floods of people to flock to your eStore. Figure out what’s working for you and target all your efforts on that. It doesn’t matter if you’re only focused on one social media platform this holiday season as long as it’s giving you actual results.
Halloween May Be Too Late …
The biggest way to capitalize on Cyber Monday is to start planning now. Today. Don’t put this off until Halloween when you’re in a time crunch to get everything done. You may need new pictures, sales copy and video content. You want to make sure every piece of technology works the way you want it to work. And you need time to create your master attack plan if you want to capture Cyber Monday profits.
So start right now. Create a plan that’s specifically tailored to your business, industry and target market. See where you have holes in your marketing and find solutions that work for your business. Your plan doesn’t need to be expensive, complex or even extensive. You just need a plan.
Just remember this tried and true adage: If you fail to plan, plan to fail.
Images: Author’s Own