How iProspect Channel Experts are Preparing for Black Friday

In the final blog post in iProspect’s Countdown to Christmas series, all our experts answer an important question: How is your channel preparing for Black Friday?

Daniel Roberts (Paid Search)

Trends are shifting as shopping evolves across both SEO and PPC. Black Friday isn’t just a Friday anymore; it’s the whole weekend right through to Cyber Monday. This means that budget management is key here to ensure you focus your budget more effectively in the build up to this weekend.

The impact of Black Friday is dampening YoY as consumers are starting to feel as though they may not always be getting the best deals. Investment in Amazon advertising during this period continues to increase but Prime Days now tend to outperform these periods. According to Amazon, Prime Day Sales surpassed Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales globally with sales growing more than +60% in 2017.

That being said, we are seeing significant growth in certain categories, such as Beauty and Clothing, which are outside of the traditional Tech categories usually associate with Black Friday. So these are the verticals which will see significant improvements YoY in this busy shopping period.

Imants Krezins (SEO)

The activities can be divided into two large categories:

  1. Building the value. This is part of the overarching program but the key is identifying the target pages. Whether it's category or product pages from previous years or recent trends that are going to be big at Christmas, concentrating a considerable amount of resource on owning the top positions in organic search is very important.
  2. Protecting the value earned. Most clients initiate code freeze well before Christmas time to avoid any last-minute changes that can bring down the site. Nevertheless, during Christmas, we’re monitoring the overall site health but also the health of the high value pages.

Kai Omonijo (CRO)

Some brands have suggested in recent years that Black Friday sales have not been as high as in previous years, hinting that they may switch focus away from this shopping day. However, we have been encouraging brands to analyse their data in greater detail. One way to do this: segment web analytics data to build a picture of the onsite user behaviour and journeys to build a clearer picture of why sales underperformed. This should offer the necessary insight to optimise better for this year.

Kevin Chan (Paid Social)

In Paid Social, Black Friday is just an incredible time: unheard of price cuts are seen on the most sought-after products and services. The Black Friday phenomena has really found a natural home in social. We often see excitement and anticipation from customers in the run up to the day, so encourage brands to satiate demand by providing a few “killer” deals as well as great general offers and discounts. In addition, if relevant, Black Friday deals are also a great chance for brands to potentially create some PR with their flagship deals. You can do this by being very generous or quirky. But be sure to stay true to your brand. 

Catherine Chappell (Paid Social)

As we see more brands adopt and place importance on Black Friday and Cyber Monday, there has been an increase in rising costs as part of the pay-to-play game on social. Most brands will elongate their offerings at the start the week to try and gain reach and scale before the Black Friday frenzy. This means allocating more budget in advance and planning earlier to accommodate these activations.

 

Black Friday is also a great way for brands to inject excitement and persona into their brand. In fact, a lot of brand recognition happens if you are able to be thumb-stopping within the social feed. Whether that’s because of amazing prices, peculiar ideas, products or good old-fashioned creativity, all this resonates with audiences.

 

Samantha De Caprio (CRM)

You need to think about whether Black Friday is right for you.  Consumers now associate Black Friday with hunting down a bargain or securing a deal.  It can be great for running offers on slow-moving stock and “great offers” can be a way to encourage repeat purchase from previous one hit wonders. 

Get the balance right between attention grabbing offers and use of Free and Discount in both your content, headlines and text. Additionally, use the tactics and calls to action that work across other activity. Too many offer-based words and images can trigger spam filters which will affect deliverability and also impact on sender reputation, which will take time to re-build.

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