Aliza Polkes
Copywriter & Editor @ Yotpo
September 2nd, 2020

10 Black Friday Strategies to Use Right Now

Shoppers are starting to hunt for Black Friday deals earlier than ever this year.

Table Of Contents

In a Yotpo survey conducted at the end of August 2020, nearly 40% of respondents claimed that they planned to start their holiday shopping in September, October, or November, with 20% saying they had already started. When combined with the fact that the COVID-19 pandemic has moved the typical Black Friday in-store experience firmly into online territory, it becomes clear that the best time to start planning for your holiday sales season is right now.

We’ve compiled 10 strategies that your brand can begin implementing right away to make the most out of Black Friday 2020.

1. Advertise effectively ahead of Black Friday

Salesforce predicts that holiday shopping will start earlier this season, in part because of shopper concerns about safety, delays, and the availability of products. This means that savvy shoppers will be on the hunt for deals long before Black Friday.

Get ahead of the game by connecting with these shoppers through a clever advertising strategy. CPM prices for paid ads across channels have decreased during the pandemic, meaning that your brand can take advantage of lower-cost ads in the lead up to Black Friday.

According to a recent Yotpo survey, time spent on mobile phones has increased by 30% since the pandemic started, so keep in mind that many of your potential customers are on their phones right now. Consider doubling down on your mobile spend with targeted social media ads about Black Friday sales, discounts, and other special promotions. You may also want to try experimenting with new ad audiences, to convert typical offline Black Friday shoppers to online.

2. Collect subscribers by offering early access to sales

Grow your subscriber list by offering early access to Black Friday deals if shoppers opt in to receive SMS messages from your brand. A large — and growing — number of subscribers will make many of the additional strategies in this article even more effective.

Moreover, by connecting with shoppers via SMS, you’ll have the ability to turn one-time Black Friday shoppers into long-term customers as you continue to engage with them in dynamic and relevant ways long after the holiday shopping season is over.

In addition to using keywords and sign-up prompts in your social ads to capture the attention of new shoppers, incentivize current shoppers to subscribe by setting up subscription forms onsite and across your social channels.

3. Create a special Black Friday collection page

Help guide shoppers directly to the sales they’re craving by creating a special Black Friday collection category on your site now, and sending consumers to it directly through ads, social channels, and more. Tease the Black Friday deals you’ll eventually be offering, including details about when the sales will start, and promote any early access offerings.

Not only will you be helping propel shoppers towards the deals they’re looking for, but you’ll also stand out on search. By creating a Black Friday collection page now, well ahead of the day itself, Google is more likely to index your collection page, helping push it to the top of search results when shoppers begin searching for “Black Friday sales” — which will start happening even earlier this year.

4. Re-engage lapsed customers before Black Friday with win-back flows

Stay top-of-mind for shoppers in the lead up to Black Friday by sending an attention-grabbing SMS message to those who haven’t made a purchase in a while. Build a flow that triggers a message to send to subscribers who haven’t purchased in the last 30 or 60 days, letting them know about all of your Black Friday offerings. You can learn how to build the most effective win-back flows in this article from SMSBump.

5. Optimize your Google Shopping campaigns

Not only are consumers increasingly turning to Google for the full shopping experience, but 82% of retail searches that don’t include a brand name go through Google Shopping, making it that much more important to beef up your Google Shopping listings to build credibility and spark relationships with first-time shoppers in the lead up to Black Friday.

In addition to ensuring that your listings are fully fleshed out with high-quality product information, take them to the next level and stand out from the competition by including reviews, star ratings, and user-generated photos. By working with a trusted Google partner like Yotpo, you’ll be able to pull this trust-building social proof into your Google Shopping campaigns, capturing the attention of high-intent Black Friday shoppers looking for a way to differentiate your brand from all the others.

6. Gift with gamification

Engage loyal and first-time shoppers alike with unique and exciting rewards for shopping with your brand on Black Friday through to Cyber Monday. Keep in mind that shoppers are sifting through tons of sales in a short period of time, so think about new ways you can stand out and connect beyond just offering a discount.

Consider a gift with purchase that changes every hour, rewarding customers for shopping while building excitement and urgency — you could even use a timer to encourage customers to complete the purchase in time to get a certain gift. When it comes to choosing the “gift” itself, further incentivize shoppers selecting top-reviewed and rated products.

7. Take advantage of mobile pop-ups on Black Friday

Capitalize on your surge in site traffic during Black Friday and Cyber Monday by using mobile pop-ups to win over new SMS subscribers, ensuring that you’ll be able to engage with these new shoppers long after the holidays are over. A 2020 Yotpo survey revealed that since the COVID pandemic began, 72% of online consumers are using mobile devices to shop, making mobile pop-ups all the more effective for driving conversion.

These pop-ups enable new shoppers to opt in to receive SMS messages from your brand right away, helping you to grow your subscribers without interrupting the shopper flow. Check out this blog post over on SMSBump for inspiration on creating the most compelling mobile pop-ups.

8. Simplify the payment process

If your checkout process isn’t as easy and frictionless as possible, Black Friday sales will slip through your fingers. By offering flexible and/or multiple payment options like Klarna, Afterpay, Apple Pay, and Shop Pay in addition to typical manual credit card entry, you’ll help reduce the amount of time shoppers spend entering personal information at checkout: a major obstacle to purchase completion.

Easier payment options are especially important for mobile shoppers, who don’t have the patience to enter in their credit card information on a smaller screen. Meanwhile, the flexibility of payment options like Klarna and Afterpay — which give consumers the option to spread out payments over a longer period of time — may appeal to first-time shoppers, who need that extra bit of confidence to complete a purchase with an unknown brand.

9. Win back Black Friday shoppers with abandoned cart flows

With the amount of deals shoppers will be bombarded with this Black Friday and Cyber Monday, it’s likely that many will start to fill their cart on your site, only to abandon it in order to complete an order with an expiring, different, or better deal on another site. The distractions will be endless.

An abandoned cart doesn’t have to mean a lost sale. Win back Black Friday shoppers with SMS abandoned cart flows. We recommend triggering a personalized message to send 15 minutes after the cart is abandoned, and a second message one day later. Both messages should include clear CTAs and incentives, reminding shoppers to pick up where they left off.

10. Invest in the post-purchase experience

Remember that the rewards you offer your shoppers in the build up to as well as on Black Friday and Cyber Monday should not be a one-and-done experience. Continue to communicate with the subscribers you’ve collected after the holidays are over with personalized and timely SMS and email communications.

A recent Yotpo survey revealed that nearly 70% of shoppers could be incentivized to buy directly from a brand with the promise of “getting discounts, coupons, or points towards my next purchase.” When texting and emailing your new subscribers, let them know that these are exactly the types of dynamic rewards they can expect to receive when they sign up for your loyalty program. Be sure to show them what they’re already earned by shopping with you during the holidays, and how that translates into points, discounts, coupons, or VIP status when they become a loyalty program member.

Shoppers are going to be bombarded with post-Black Friday communications this year, so ensure you rise above the noise with a dynamic marketing strategy, where you’re constantly experimenting with new forms of communication and analyzing the results.

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