Recently, we came out with a BFCM guide with tips from leading industry experts to support brands on the busiest sales day of the year. It's pretty long, so we picked out the most valuable nuggets of wisdom right here. We hope they guide you towards your most profitable and seamless Black Friday yet!
Tip# 1: Review Last Year’s Data
Here’s a trend from last year that stood out: Average order values (AOV) during BFCM last year was $105 globally and $120 for U.S. sales. Reviewing your store’s AOV will give you some great ideas on how to tailor your BFCM pricing and deals.
⭐️ PDQ Pro Tip #1: If you haven’t, consider a hero offer or bundle in the $99-$120 range. It’s a sweet spot.
Aaron Spivak Founder, Hush Blankets: “Look, brands gotta be dialed in, right? For BFCM, it's all about value and attention. Make your audience feel seen and valued. It's 2023, no more generic stuff! Last year was school; this year, it's the exam. Analyze the heck outta your data. What worked? Double down on that. What didn't? Scrap it. It's about evolution, always iterating.” Personalized email offers, flash sales, livestream Q&As, and even leveraging TikTok or IG stories.
Tip #2: Add Arrives by Dates in Checkout and on the PDP
The reality is, around 70% of online shoppers abandon checkout, most of the time due to a lack of trust. Losing a sale so close to the finish line is painful and expensive. But it’s also avoidable when you realize how much you can communicate with a simple delivery arrival date.
⭐️ PDQ Pro Tip #2: Add accurate arrives-by dates (also known as a delivery promise) to all your delivery methods in checkout as well as on the product page. It’s proven to significantly increase conversions.
Ronak Shah CEO, Obvi: “We're well aware of the intense competition that comes with BFCM, and we've discovered our competitive advantage lies within the checkout process. After conducting A/B tests to refine our ideal checkout journey, we have full confidence that our PDQ-backed checkout will steer us seamlessly through the challenges of BFCM.” Ensuring customers enjoy the smoothest and most hassle-free checkout experience holds paramount importance during BFCM.”
Tip #3: A/B test to optimize free shipping & first timers
A/B testing is the key to transforming your checkout, shipping, and delivery !rom an average logistics operation to a strategic pro!it-engine that continuously brings new revenues to your business. You can A/B test everything after the classic marketing funnel to learn everything.
⭐️ PDQ Pro Tip #3: Offer free shipping too: A Forrester study conducted on behalf of Shopify found that free shipping has an influence on purchasing for three-quarters of global shoppers
Hayley Segar Founder & Operator, Onewith: “The holiday season is a time of warmth, cheer, and personal touches...we use PDQ to and see that even the names of the shipping methods were considered by the brand. For example, as a swim brand, we customized our shipping methods to be all sea-themed. Standard Smooth Sailing, Priority Speed Boat, and Express Torpedo are our 3 shipping options at checkout. Since implementing this, we have seen a lift in checkout conversion and honestly, the more branded customer experience when selecting a shipping method just makes us happy.” inject some additional fun and on-brand details to our checkout. Just one more thing that makes a customer feel good about their purchase.”
Tip #4: Personalize your customer experience
Your customers want options, and that’s what personalizing delivery is all about: giving customers the flexibility to choose the delivery option that’s best for them.
⭐️ PDQ Pro Tip #4: Automatically pair orders to the nearest inventory location, enabling you to show a delivery promise with the most competitive arrival times. This also improves conversion since it's a more aggressive arrival date that will appear sooner based on your fulfillment capacity.
Will Blake eCommerce Manager, Sizzle Fish: “Giving customers a better understanding of when their order will arrive is huge when it comes to gift giving, especially when it comes to perishable gifts. Shipping perishables is tricky, with tons of rules regarding box size and transit times. Automating the box and rate selection will help us reduce labor costs and focus more time on delighting customers this BFCM!” Adding more customer touchpoints regarding shipping status, what is shipping, and when it is shipping has gone a long way to improving our customer's experience.”
Tip #5: Prevent problems before they occur with communication & automations
Upgrade your customer experience, reduce WISMO (where is my order?) tickets, and generate more repeat purchases by using shipping automations that help your CS team get ahead of issues before they occur. Adding this layer of automation safeguards your brand’s reputation and creates the ultimate customer delivery experience.
⭐️ PDQ Pro Tip #5: Connect your CS platform (Gorgias, Gladly, Kustomer, Zendesk or others) with your delivery software to keep your support teams in the loop and ready to address any issues.
Antonia Palacios Warehouse & Logistics Manager, Ghia: “Ways to fill customers needs are preparation, having enough product and the team to fulfill orders in a timely manner, have the team know your product to be able to upsell. Offer gift card writing to customers so when they buy a gift for their loved ones, we write the card for them. Offer a special discount to loyal customers.” Giving incentives to customers, such as free shipping, special sales.
Tip #6: Build your community
BFCM is an awesome time to show your community what you’re all about and turn first time customers into returning community members. Beyond your site, leverage other channels like social media to interact with your customers. It’s an opportunity to learn more about what they want – is there a certain product customers are excited about? Are there gift recommendations you could provide? You could even ask current customers to get involved in your marketing by sharing pictures of their favorite products.
⭐️ PDQ Pro Tip #6: Stay true to your brand. Don’t throw out your values to win over new customers. Instead, honor your values and show care for your current customers. Genuine behavior will be more likely to drive new customers anyway!
Eli Weiss Senior Director CX and Retention, Jones Road Beauty: “Brands can enhance the BFCM customer experience by ensuring the checkout process is as streamlined and simple as possible. Provide a range of delivery options, including express shipping for last-minute shoppers, but more importantly, clear and regular communication about the status of the delivery can keep customers informed and mitigate any potential frustrations. Remember, a big bulk of BFCM customers will be new customers to your brand, and ” they'll assume the delays and overall experience is your ‘business as usual,’ unless otherwise noted.”
Tip #7: All about incentives
The biggest mistake brands make during the holidays is giving steep discounts to everybody. Specifically, there’s still a way to offer discounts without sacrificing your margins: with shipping options. How? By segmenting customers.
⭐️ PDQ Pro tip #7: Encourage specific customer segments (i.e. those further away from your fulfillment centers) to select expedited shipping by offering a BF discount that makes this option more appealing. By encouraging shoppers who are more likely to desire faster shipping to pay for the pricier shipping option, you’re simultaneously increasing revenues while enhancing CX.
There’s a ton more tips in PDQ’s BFCM guide, check it out! Happy shipping!