Prepping Your Small Business for the Holidays, Part 4 of 5: Getting into the Black on Cyber Monday
The holiday season tends to be a big period for sales, with some retailers generating half their yearly revenue from this two-month time frame. This guide, the fourth of a five-part series, will discuss how online retailers can make the most of the busiest sales day of the year – Cyber Monday.
Andy Dunn, the CEO of online apparel store Bonobos, knew Black Friday was big, but he wasn’t sure how popular Cyber Monday was. To ensure he was getting traffic on the sales day, he offered a 30 percent discount. Shoppers loved it, and by closing time the next day the online retailer had tripled its previous single-day sales record.
This anecdote shows the importance of planning in advance for Cyber Monday. Dunn told Business on Main that the sale ended up costing his store because it was so popular. He intends to launch a more balanced promotion this year, and every retailer should keep this in mind as they develop their own Cyber Monday plan.
Consumers are shopping online now more than ever before. In the fourth quarter of 2010 online spending was up 11 percent year-over-year, according to comScore. This holiday season, it’s expected to make similar gains.
With that in mind, it’s first important to ensure your small business website is prepared for the influx of consumer traffic. It doesn’t matter what sale you run, if consumers can’t access your website, they won’t be making any purchases. Retailers should test their sites under a variety of conditions – from a smartphone in their physical stores to a laptop outside. This will enable them to fix any problems before the holiday rush.
Once the website has been stabilized, you can then focus on creating a compelling sale. It can be tricky – businesses need to stay in the black, but they also have to offer consumers lucrative sales.
One of the best ways of finding out what consumers want is by simply asking them. Take a poll on social media or through email marketing and ask what kind of sale customers want. After you have determined where consumers’ general interests lie, then you can begin crunching numbers to see where you can offer discounts.
Finally, it’s crucial you have the inventory to meet demand. Shoppers don’t like trying to buy a good, only to find it has been sold out. This can create resentment toward the brand in question, so stock up prior to Cyber Monday.This entry was posted in Advanced, Branding and tagged holiday marketing, series, small business holiday marketing, Small Business Marketing. Bookmark the permalink.