The Complete Guide To Prepare Your Store For The BFCM Sale
As Shopify store owners start to take stock of their products, it’s safe to say that the BFCM sale madness has already begun. With each passing day, a new task gets added to your list. With so much to be done, it’s only obvious that you might miss out on a few things in the rush.
But every little detail you miss is a chance for the other Shopify store to take away your customers during the BFCM sale.
Having worked with Shopify stores across the world, we know that a methodical approach is the real trick to getting more sales during this period. It isn’t about how big a discount you’re offering to the customers. It’s about how you reach out to them with your deals, how you keep their interest hooked, what shopping experience you offer to them and how you turn them into customers.
In this guide, we’re going to walk you through how to prepare for the BFCM sale - before, during and even after!
Treat this as your new Black Friday Cyber Monday BFCM Toolbox.
Before the BFCM sale
1. Pick your discounts
The very first thing you need to do while preparing for BFCM is to decide what kind of discounts and offers you want to make to the shoppers. There’s no one strategy that fits all Shopify stores, so pick your discounts based on your performance analytics - how well a product sells and what is the reason why it is being sold so easily.
A few discounts that you can add to your BFCM sale with apps like Bold Discounts, include:
- Discount: A storewide discount where you show the shopper how much the prices have been slashed for BFCM.
- BOGO (buy one get one): Let shoppers see how they can get more for less during BFCM with this discount type.
- Free shipping: Turn international shoppers into customers by offering free shipping.
But remember to set the conditions for your discount. For example, if you’re offering free shipping, it’s a good idea to let the shopper know of the minimum order value.
2. Set up your Shopify BFCM pre-launch page
A pre-launch BFCM sale page is a great way to create a hype around the discounts you’ll be offering. It also lets you build an audience and secure some of your sales even before BFCM goes live. In fact, it can also be used to validate the brands and the offers you’re going to be promoting to understand if shoppers are interested in them.
We wrote a complete post around why BFCM sale pre-launch page is a must this season, along with tips on how to get more sales from it. Read it here.
3. Promote your Shopify BFCM offers
Once you have the discounts decided and your pre-launch page set up, it’s time to take them to the market. Remember to start your promotions early to ensure you’re not competing against high budgets set by the bigger brands.
A few ways you should definitely promote your BFCM offers include:
- Announcement bar: Ensure your store visitors see your discounts first with a site-wide announcement bar.
- Exit intent popup: Implement an exit-intent email popup early on to build your BFCM list by targeting your site visitors.
- Email marketing: Set up email automation and reach out to your existing customers and subscribers with your BFCM offers.
- Web push notifications: Send a sequence of web push messages to build up to your BFCM sale.
- Social media marketing: Promote your BFCM offers on your social media accounts. Use catchy images to grab your audience’s attention.
- Social and search advertising: Use paid campaigns to build an audience on your BFCM pre-launch page. Retarget this audience when the sale goes live. Always create a sense of urgency around the deals.
Not sure which Shopify apps to use for promoting your offers? Here’s a list of the best Shopify apps for BFCM and holiday season marketing.
4. Customize the look and feel of the store
Right from changing your header image to showcase the discounts to adding a button to lead shoppers to your pre-launch page, customize your store’s look and feel for the BFCM sale.
While you’re customizing the store for a great shopping experience, also make time to further optimize your product pages and make them more impressive. You can do this by adding clear and detailed product images, creating informative product descriptions, showing the slash in price during BFCM and even adding a countdown timer to let shoppers know till when the deal is available.
Pro tip: Dig into your store analytics to identify your best selling products or those that are trending amongst shoppers. Use them as a bait to turn shoppers into subscribers and customers by showcasing them first.
5. Promote wishlisting
When hyping your BFCM sale and marketing it to shoppers before it's launch, you should be able to nudge your shoppers to take action and get them to engage with your store. One way to do this is by promoting wishlisting. You can encourage shoppers to wishlist items they like so that they can buy these products quickly.
By wishlisting items, your shoppers can find items they want to buy when the BFCM sale is live and checkout sooner. In constrast, without wishlisting, your shoppers would spend a lot of time during the sale browsing your entire product catalog.
Recommended app(s): Flits
During the BFCM sale
1. Create an engaging shopping experience
Don’t make your BFCM sale the usual, boring way. Add elements to your site that will excite the shoppers and make them feel more engaged with it. For instance, adding a gamified email popup with games like spin the wheel, reel of coupons and card dance, makes the usual ‘enter email to get a discount’ more interesting.
Recommended app(s): WooHoo
2. Offer round the clock customer support
One of the primary reasons that shoppers don’t complete a purchase during BFCM is not being able to understand the product. Just like in brick and mortar stores, they just need a little assistance to be nudged towards a purchase. That’s where offering round the clock customer support becomes important and you can do this by having a live chat on your store during the BFCM sale.
3. Reconvert customers at the Shopify thank you page
Make the most of every conversion during the BFCM sale. Don’t let a customer leave right after they make a purchase. Try to sell more and reconvert these shoppers before they leave by optimizing your Shopify thank you page.
Use the page to make product recommendations, upsell and cross-sell other products, offer time-sensitive discounts, get more information about the customer or nudge the customer to share their purchases on social media.
4. Personalize your transactional emails
Transactional emails are a must for the complete purchase cycle. But why use these emails to only share order details, the invoice or the shipping details of the order? You could use this as your chance to reconvert the customer.
Include product recommendations or a navigation bar to highlight specific collections from your BFCM sale. You could make this transactional email more compelling by adding an additional discount code as an incentive to buy more from your store.
Recommended app(s): Spently
5. Turn BFCM deal shoppers into subscribers
Most online shoppers don’t turn into customers on their first visit. They will choose to explore more products and deals - especially during BFCM. That’s why you need to establish a channel of communication with them before they leave.
Now every shopper is different and they may choose to subscribe to your store’s updates differently. That’s why you need to enable opting in for web push notifications, subscribing to Messenger updates or even getting text reminders.
Keep all grounds covered to ensure you don’t lose your chance to convert any shopper!
6. Automate abandoned cart reminders
The average cart abandonment rate for stores is about 69%. During BFCM the number only skyrockets as shoppers have more options to choose from - be it in terms of the products or the deals being offered on them. That’s why you need to keep your abandoned cart reminders automated.
Set up these cart reminders to let shoppers know the sale is about to end or till when the discounts are valid. Use the opportunity to create a sense of urgency around the availability of the products. A few channels you should definitely cover for these reminders include - email, web push notifications, SMS and Facebook Messenger.
For example, when a BFCM shopper explores a deal on your store, adds the product to the cart and abandons it, your SMS campaign should trigger automatically. You don’t want to lose the customer to another store!
7. Get more BFCM sales by showing recommendations on your Shopify store
While visitors are on your Shopify store, you need to be able to keep them engaged. This is where product recommendations help. In fact, 35% of Amazon’s revenue is generated by its recommendation engine.
Place recommendations on your Shopify store to show relevant product suggestions to shoppers at different points of your Shopify store. Here are some tips to help you place recommendations and increase engagement and sales through them—
- Add 'Similar Items' widget on your product pages to lower drop-offs and give shoppers a reason to continue browsing
- Show 'Frequently Bought Together' widgets on your cart page to increase AOV. You can also place personalized recommendations like 'Inspired By Your Browsing History' here.
- Place multiple recommendation widgets on your storefront. Recommendation widgets like 'Bestseller' and 'Trending Products' work perfectly here.
Recommended app(s): Wiser
8. Set up ads to acquire shoppers easily
Ads are a great way to target new audiences and get them to start shopping from you. Facebook and Instagram ads are one of the top tactics used by merchants to acquire customers during Black Friday. Their high visibility as well as the social media platform's engaged audience base makes it easy for merchants to reach people who are sure to be interested in products they sell.
Set up targeted Facebook ads to acquire new customers and get more BFCM sales. We'd recommend hiring an ad specialist or even learning to do it yourself through online guides. You can also pick up ready-to-use ad templates which you can customize to fit your brand.
Recommended app(s): RetargetApp
9. Get more BFCM sales with upselling offers
One of the best ways to increase the AOV on your Shopify store is with upselling. Upselling is a sales tactic where merchants nudge customers to spend more by showing them offers on upgraded or higher priced variants of items that the shopper is already looking at.
According to statistics, upselling has proven to increase revenue by 10 to 30% on average.
You can place upsell offers during the Black Friday sale to get your customers to buy a higher-priced item. place these upsell offers within product pages or even as pop-ups so that shoppers who are considering a specific item can easily be upgraded to a higher cart value.
Recommended app(s): Upsellio
1. Ask your customers for reviews and ratings
Make the most out of the happy discount shopping during the BFCM sale. Ask shoppers to rate and review the products they purchased. You could even request them to share pictures of the products to get more user-generated content. Gathering social proof helps you boost the credibility of your Shopify store, driving more sales eventually.
With Shopify apps like Loox, you can do this easily. The Shopify apps enable you to collect reviews from shoppers and also add them to your product pages, or the Facebook feed to showcase how loved they are.
You could do this by sending your BFCM customers an email, a web push notification or a quick reminder on the Facebook Messenger. But remember to make it sound more about them and how their feedback matters.
2. Understand your BFCM Shopify analytics
Your BFCM sale is over. But that doesn’t mean you’re not going to have an opportunity to sell more in the coming months. To be able to tap into market opportunities, you need to be able to understand who these shoppers were, what products they were interested in and what motivated them to make the purchase.
With actionable data from your BFCM sale, you can personalize your marketing campaigns, plan your product inventory as per shopper interests and preferences and even plan your upcoming sales.
3. Keep your customers engaged to make more sales
Don’t let BFCM shoppers become one-time customers. Keep them engaged with your brand with regular communication that adds value to them. It should nudge them to visit your Shopify store and make purchases despite the end of the BFCM discounts. You can do this across multiple channels - web push notifications, email, Facebook Messenger or even SMS.
For example, you could send them a web push notification a week after the BFCM sale ends. Let them know that there are other discounts available on the products they loved. Or use this opportunity to share information about an upcoming sale on your Shopify store.
Alternatively, you can nudge the BFCM shopper to come back to your store with a Messenger marketing campaign. Simply use their purchase data to recommend a new product range you’ve added to the store or offer a discount on the products they did not purchase during the BFCM sale.
4. Continue converting your BFCM shoppers
There are some online shoppers that will be late for the party. But they will land on your store while seeking for BFCM deals - even when your sale is over. That doesn’t mean you can’t convert these shoppers.
Use a coupon window to show all your live discounts or other offers you have in the store. Add a signup form to turn them into subscribers so you can share special deals or simply take them back to your home page, where you’re displaying the best sellers.
Don’t let these late-shoppers leave without trying to convert them. That’s what you see Amazon do every time you visit their store!
Getting more out of your Shopify BFCM sale
Most stores see their traffic, subscribers, sales and revenue hit a peak during the BFCM sale. But as much as an opportunity BFCM is, it takes a lot of things to make it successful.
Starting from understanding your existing customers and target shoppers to looking into the best-selling products and ensuring enough inventory, creating discounts and ensuring each one of them gets noticed, things can get overwhelming very soon.
That’s why you need to follow through this checklist to ensure your BFCM sale makes you the most revenue!
Not sure how to set up your BFCM sale or feel it’s too much for you to handle?