Last year shoppers spent a record £1.1bn with UK retailers on Black Friday and 2016 is predicted to be even bigger. With Black Friday (25th November) and Cyber Monday (28th November) around the corner, are you ready for the Christmas rush? You will have already started placing orders for stock, but what else should you be doing to prepare?
Analyse customer behaviour
Use data and analytics to gather insight into customer preferences – in particular during key shopping dates such as the last 2-3 years of Black Friday. This can help you decide on promotions to run and products to sell over Christmas. Continue to monitor this over the festive shopping period so you can tailor offers and drive sales throughout the rest of the year.
There will be a lot of hype around Black Friday where competitors will be shouting about their sales and deals. Start early and get your target customers planning their shopping – use your social channels to showcase upcoming deals and get customers motivated and involved by offering competitions and vouchers to build hype around these days well in advance.
Looking at trends from previous years will also help you plan internal staffing requirements – for example you may wish to extend customer service hours or increase the number of staff on phones and on social media.
Sales spike on the run up to Christmas, so ask yourself whether or not your business can handle the increase in orders without it affecting your customers?
Efficient order fulfilment is important all year round, but even more so during the holidays when delivery times are tight. If extra sales put a strain on you and your staff, which can result in late or incorrect orders, consider outsourcing your fulfilment. This will allow all orders to be picked, packed and dispatched correctly, giving you happy customers.