Seven weeks remain until Thanksgiving and the biggest sale of the year. This year, Black Friday will be on November 25 and Cyber Monday on November 28.

According to Adobe report, Black Friday ecommerce sales increased by 14% from the previous year and Thanksgiving sales increased even more – up to 25% from 2014. All in all, ecommerce sales brought in $4.45 billion in ecommerce sales in US.

This year won’t be the exception. Millions of shoppers will participate in this holiday marathon.  So, how should you prepare to be in the best shape to take on the Black Friday challenge?

Get ready for Black Friday email campaigns

Custora reports that email marketing was the primary channel driving online sales in 2015, accounting for 25% of transactions. Meanwhile, social media drove only 1.7% of sales. Take into account our advice to make sure you maximize your share of the available online spending pie this year.

1. Encourage your visitors to subscribe.

If you start now, there is still time to create a Black Friday alert about upcoming sales in your online store. It will deliver you a ready-made engaged subscribers list for your campaign.

How can you do this?

  • Adjust the banners and signup forms on your homepage as well as the key traffic pages on your store to promote your Black Friday offers.
  • Highlight the benefits of signing up, e.g. there are going to be special subscriber-only deals.
  • Create a special signup page to promote the sale on social media.
  • Use paid search and social channels to boost the traffic to your Black Friday and Cyber Monday signup page. During this year Omnisend (previously Soundest) has made a lot of integrations with great tools, that can help you organize contests on social media and drive new leads.

Check out the most recent email list building experiment completed by Omnisend.

Using this tailored list of customers, you can make the campaign more personalized for your new subscribers. Add extra value to your emails, make new subscribers feel special and you will achieve more conversions, as well as better open and click rates.

Note: While actively gathering subscribers, try to use a WELCOME SERIES to welcome newbies on board and break the ice for first purchases. 

2. When is a time to start a Black Friday Sale?

Though the sales seem occur on certain dates, consider starting your Black Friday campaigns earlier. Over a third of holiday eCommerce sales in 2014 occurred prior to Thanksgiving according to comScore, Inc.

The emails sent prior to Thanksgiving are more likely to be engaged with by consumers. One of the reasons is that on the Friday itself, inboxes will be bombarded with many emails and the chance to be noticed decrease many times. Here is a great calendar of dates and occasions for your email marketing in 2016.

The IBM annual Holiday recap report provided slightly controversial data. According to IBM, Cyber Monday is still the largest for Online Sales. On Cyber Monday online sales were 30.5 percent higher than for Black Friday in 2014.

However, Black Friday shoppers spent an average of $129.37 per order, compared to $124.11 per order on Cyber Monday, a difference of 4.2 percent.

A solution that pops into my mind is to launch the campaign earlier and to boost it for non-openers once again on Cyber Monday. Therefore, those who missed your first email will receive the second on Cyber Monday.

An example of Black Friday newsletter booster sent on Cyber Monday.

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3. Discount. Discount. Discount.

It is no secret that discounts are a must for this kind of sale. If you give discounts for all your goods, you already have a clear message (“all stock on sale”). However, if the sale is going to be only for particular items, how do you know which of them to highlight?

Try to analyze your customer behavior from last year. It will show what items caused the biggest interest online. This knowledge will help you create the offers you know will drive email engagement as well as direct traffic to your online store to purchase.

Don’t forget free shipping.

Note: Too small discounts or irrelevant discounted products result in customer disappointment. You all probably remember the failure of Amazon on Prime Day sales.

4. Think about the subject line and preheader.

Bare in mind that huge competition is waiting for your newsletter in the inboxes of your subscribers. Think about the best eye-catching subject line for your email. Recently, we have provided a research on our clients and best-performing subject lines for Black Friday campaigns. In addition, some more tips on writing subject lines you can find here: The 10 best performing email subject lines for small business. Take them into account when writing yours.

5. Make sure your email is mobile-friendly.

Custora reports that mobile shopping saw strong growth over the holiday with a 34% share of online sales. Last year IBM report revealed that mobile sales reached 22.6 percent of all online sales. So the growth is huge!

According to Litmus surveys, even more – a half of all readers are checking their emails on mobile devices nowadays. They will hardly tolerate unclickable links, poorly portrayed images and text which is difficult to read.

The solution for preventing them from leaving your content is a responsive newsletter template. You should adjust your emails in order to optimize viewing experiences across various devices and platforms. A responsive newsletter design has become a must in the email marketing campaigns.

Short checklist to test if your email is mobile friendly:

  • the copy is not too long to read in the mobile
  • a call to action button is visible on a screen without a need to scroll down.
  • a call to action button is thumb-sized
  • all the landing/online store pages that links are included into the newsletter are mobile-friendly

6. Create the urgency.

Determining a deadline for a deal encourage customers, who are willing to buy, make it faster. The best example for it – night sales, Cyber Monday sales. The customers know that if they like something in your store they have only tonight / only this Friday to purchase it cheaper.

Also, deal sites such as groupon.co.uk, mightydeals.co.uk, etc. use this tactic exemplary.

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7. Abandoned cart

According to Business Insider, 55% of people abandon their carts because of doubts and indecisiveness. For this issue, there is an automated solution – cart recovery emails. They are set up with customer’s selected items and sent a while after the he has abandoned his cart.

To such email, you can always add a personal discount/another kind of a gift to encourage a customer to purchase. Sometimes using cart recovery automated emails, revenue increases up to 20 %!

Related posts

For more Black Friday email marketing tips and statistics, check out the following:

Do you have any other Black Friday email strategies? Let us know in the comments below.

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