What is Cyber Monday?
Cyber Monday is a marketing term referring to the first Monday after the Thanksgiving holiday in the United States. It’s a 24-hour online shopping event that was originally created by businesses to encourage people to do their shopping online and is now often regarded as an extension of the Black Friday sales.
What is the difference between Cyber Monday and Black Friday?
The origins of the term ‘Black Friday’ go back as far as the 1950s, whereas Cyber Monday’s origins are much more recent. The term was coined in 2005 to describe the Monday after the Black Friday when people continued to shop online after going back to work. Cyber Monday is by far the biggest online shopping day of the year, representing a massive sales opportunity for eCommerce retailers.
Many smart and savvy retailers take advantage of the ‘Black Friday sales season’ (which usually starts around Tuesday) to figure out which deals and promotions are working and use those insights to optimize their Cyber Monday sales. By replacing unpopular offers with deals that are in high demand, businesses can do both, drive more profit and keep their customers happy.
Although traditionally Black Friday sales focused on in-store deals, more and more shoppers choose to hunt for offers online, and the concept of Black Friday as the kick-off of the holiday shopping season is changing. The period from Black Friday to Cyber Monday is now often referred to as ‘Cyber weekend’, with discounts getting steeper and steeper as the sale progresses. It’s a great opportunity for retailers to clear their stock and gather useful data in preparation for the Christmas sale.
How to prepare your online store for Cyber Monday
- Optimize your website for mobile devices. Both Black Friday and Cyber Monday demonstrate an enormous growth of mobile shopping. Ensuring your website looks great and works seamlessly across all devices is key in order to grab a share of the mobile sales.
- Ensure you can handle the demand. Whether you’re drop shipping, manufacturing your products or carry your own stock, work with your partners to prepare for the holiday sales spike and avoid selling out faster than you wanted.
- Create buzz and suspense before the sale starts. Announcing your Black Friday or Cyber Monday offers on the day of the sale is one thing, but building a suspense around your upcoming deals through sneak-peeks, email marketing campaigns, social media promotions and gorgeous visuals on your site is a completely different matter. The momentum you manage to build early on will help you increase the volume of your sales once the deals are released.
- Invest in paid search advertising. Cyber Monday has grown into a huge online shopping event, with customers deliberately delaying their shopping until this day to benefit from hefty discounts. A great portion of Cyber Monday sales is generated through paid search ads, as shoppers are searching with an intent to buy rather than just to browse. Conduct a thorough keyword research to find keyword opportunities and attract the right customers.
- Have your distribution strategy figured out. Email campaigns, social media ads, gift guides and keyword optimized content are the obvious avenues for driving traffic to your store and there is an array of other holiday sales marketing ideas that you should consider, but distributing the irresistible Cyber Monday offers online across different subreddits, forums, Facebook groups, deal aggregators and other sites is one of the low-hanging fruits that often gets overlooked, though could generate great results if done right.