One of the many challenges for an eCommerce business is setting yourself up for a successful Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Some people might assume that this “shopping holiday” takes care of itself because purchase intent is so high, but that’s not necessarily the case.
Like the old saying goes, failing to prepare is preparing to fail, which certainly rings true if you want to fully capitalize on the November sales bump. This is where the ScaleBoom team here at LaunchBoom really shines.
ScaleBoom, our team of in-house eCommerce specialists, has been strategizing for the Black Friday weekend since the week of July 4th!
Let’s take a look at how they’ve been able to achieve incredible results for their clients during Black Friday 2021.
The Big Wins
- Average return on ad spend (ROAS): 6-8x
- Email open rates: 30%
- November sales relative to average monthly revenue: 2.5-3x
The graph above displays the November sales results from just a single partner, illustrating the massive potential for eCommerce businesses during this season.
These results are fantastic, but it’s important to focus on the how even more than the numbers themselves. Let’s dive in.
How ScaleBoom achieved a ROAS of 6-8x for Black Friday 2021
ScaleBoom focused on two main strategies to achieve this outcome. The first was to spend nearly five months growing the top of their marketing funnel.
By allocating several months for this task, it allowed them to gather valuable data through email nurturing and testing out different creative to hone in on what would convert best during Black Friday.
Another beneficial reason for building up the funnel is that it generates a large enough audience to retarget ads towards during the holiday season. As the funnel gets bigger, more qualified leads eventually get filtered down towards the bottom.
Efficient audience targeting
This leads to the second strategy in achieving a high ROAS. The closer it gets to the holidays, the greater the cost of running ads. When that happens, cost per acquisition (CPA) at the top of the funnel becomes much less efficient than the CPA for retargeted audiences where more qualified leads can be found.
On top of higher ad costs during the holiday season, Facebook’s ad delivery costs have nearly doubled over the previous years! This new financial hurdle, especially for smaller-scale eCommerce businesses, has made efficient audience targeting, creative strategy, and conversion optimization more important than ever to the bottom line.
Here’s an example of how ScaleBoom used efficient audience targeting for Black Friday 2021: A general rule of thumb ScaleBoom follows is to not exceed 2-3x frequency for retargeting throughout the year because going beyond that threshold yields diminishing returns. However, the team understood that revenue during this time would be inherently higher.
Taking this into account, they boosted their retargeting frequency up to 5-7x because any assumed diminishing returns would be offset by the massive potential for sales. The CPA for retargeted audiences suddenly became more cost-effective despite the increased costs in ad spend, resulting in a 6-8x ROAS.
- Use the months leading up to Black Friday to aggressively expand your email lists
- Facebook ad costs are continuing to increase, and those costs inflate even more during the holidays
- Retarget ad audiences at higher frequencies right before Black Friday for a more efficient ROAS
Why 30% email open rates are important during Black Friday
Once you generate large enough email lists and Facebook audiences, it’s then your responsibility to leverage them into sales. This task can be daunting, but the eCommerce experts at ScaleBoom know this is one of many steps in becoming a seven-figure business.
For Black Friday and Cyber Monday, they took a twice-a-day approach to their email marketing—one email in the morning at 7 AM and another in the evening at 7 PM starting on Thanksgiving Day through the Tuesday after Cyber Monday.
Across ScaleBoom’s entire eCommerce portfolio, that amounts to millions of email recipients over the course of a few days. This might sound like overdoing it, but consider that these days are the most profitable days of the year and purchase intent is at an annual high. In this context, a 30% email open rate becomes an outstanding metric in understanding where profitability can come from.
Another important thing to remember is to carefully craft your emails in your email service platform to remove buyers from your sequences. The last thing you want to do after so much careful nurturing is to scare potential repeat customers away from your brand with irrelevant offers.
What about the people who aren’t buying and continue receiving promotional emails as a result? The good news is, you don’t have to be frightened by large-scale unsubscriptions. For Black Friday 2021, ScaleBoom found that there was no jump in this undesirable metric since customers have come to expect full inboxes during this season anyway.
Learn from your data
A big advantage of blasting out such a large volume of emails to so many people is the opportunity to try new things and see what processes or creative marketing angles do and don’t work well. This point is key for future optimization.
As mentioned above, emails started going out at 7 AM on Thanksgiving day. While early sales reminders might sound like a good thing, the ScaleBoom team actually found these were among the lowest converting emails across the whole Black Friday weekend campaign. The data here indicated that they can skip this time slot next year and focus their efforts somewhere more productive.
- ScaleBoom sent emails to millions of recipients at a frequency of twice a day
- Emails sent the morning of Thanksgiving converted at the lowest rate
- There’s no need to be afraid of high unsubscribe rates in your email list
- Compile the data you gather and use it for next year
Using upsells and promotions on Black Friday to achieve 2.5-3x average monthly sales
Making a sale on Black Friday or Cyber Monday is great, but finding ways to turn one sale into several and extend two major shopping days into five is even better. There are a few ways the ScaleBoom team was able to do this for their partners.
Black Friday upsells
The first was with product upsells, where customers would be pinged with a pop-up message to add more items to their carts before reaching final checkout. When done strategically, to make the buyer feel it’s an organic suggestion, you can achieve nearly 20% conversion on upsells, as ScaleBoom did this year for their clients.
Black Friday promotions
The second strategy is to use promotions. Each product and margin is different, so there are no best-promotion-fits-all answers here, but for Black Friday and Cyber Monday 2021, the best performing promotions that ScaleBoom implemented were (in order of conversion success rate):
- 20% off discounts*
- Tiered discount structure (i.e. buy more, save more)
- Gift with purchase
*Interestingly, discounts over 20% did not result in any additional conversion.
Cyber Monday extended
Finally, extending Cyber Monday through some creative marketing is the last thing you can do to maximize sales.
For example, one of the ways ScaleBoom drove conversions the day after Cyber Monday was by using “inventory restocked” messaging. The reason this promotional copy worked so well, is due to widespread concerns about the global shipping crisis and how it might affect buyers’ abilities to receive the products they paid for. With this reassurance from ScaleBoom creative, customers could continue to buy after the Black Friday weekend rush with peace of mind.
It’s vital to keep finding innovative new ways to entice potential customers to buy because some will always need that extra push to get them over the finish line!
- Upselling products can result in up to 20% conversion
- The best performing promotions for ScaleBoom this year were 20% off discounts, tiered discounts, and gifts with purchase
- Find creative ways to extend Cyber Monday into the Tuesday after
Thank you for checking out our LaunchBoom Black Friday Recap for 2021. Our ScaleBoom team set high goals for themselves this year and went above and beyond to make 2021 their best holiday period to date. If you’ve got a product you’re ready to take over to eCommerce, get in touch with us to find out how ScaleBoom can help you do it.