Blog > Cyber Monday: The Ultimate eCommerce Guide To Success in 2020

Cyber Monday: The Ultimate eCommerce Guide To Success in 2020

By |Published On: November 16th, 2020|

Overview

  1. Social Media Marketing
  2. Email Campaigns
  3. Google Ads
  4. Website Optimization: Mobile & Desktop
  5. Abandoned Carts: Everything You Need to Know
  6. Checkout Page Optimization
  7. Logistics: Shipping & Handling
  8. Customer Support
  9. Policy Transparency
  10. Customer Loyalty

With the 2020 Cyber Monday (Nov. 30) quickly approaching, eCommerce stores nationwide are preparing their teams for a day that’s looking to be bigger and better than years past. With the pandemic still playing an active role in limiting how we live and where we go, eCommerce has been booming — Cyber Monday is looking to follow suit.

What is Cyber Monday?

Cyber Monday is a 24-hour online shopping event that falls on the Monday after the Thanksgiving holiday in the United States. It was originally created by businesses as an extension of Black Friday, in hopes of encouraging people to shop online to prepare for the upcoming holiday season. It is one of the highest, if not the highest, revenue-generating days for eCommerce stores worldwide.

Cyber Monday eCommerce Sales

According to Statista.com, Cyber Monday 2019 was the biggest online shopping day in U.S. history with record eCommerce sales over $9.4 billion USD and over $135 billion USD for the holidays. Despite the impact of COVID-19, projections for the 2020 season remain positive. While retail sales decreased 3.4% during the pandemic, the U.S. Census Bureau reported online sales saw a 44.4% increase from Q2 2019 to Q2 2020 — eCommerce sales in Q2 2020 made up 15.1% of total sales.

So, you’ve got your product collection stocked up and your promotions ready to go for the big day, but maybe you’re not quite sure how to execute? We’ve got you covered with the Ultimate Cyber Monday eCommerce Guide to rack in those sales.

With that being said, let’s explore 10 tactics your business can use to crush it this holiday season.

Social Media Marketing

In 2019, Statista reported 79% of the U.S. had a social networking profile. These popular social media platforms offer eCommerce merchants another avenue to connect with audiences to build brand awareness, drive website traffic, and increase sales. Merchants can achieve this in several ways — valuable content, engaging conversations, analyzing results, and running ads — and on several platforms — Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, etc.

Each platform can serve a different purpose for your eCommerce business and reach various audiences. Whether it be industry-related news (LinkedIn), promotional videos (YouTube), or posts to boost engagement (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter) — there’s a channel for every business, demographic, and goal. Shoppers spend 20-40% more with businesses they engage with on social media — each channel can help your brand increase sales.

With that being said, here are a few tactics that can help boost your sales:

  1. Run Holiday Campaigns
  2. Utilize Social eCommerce
  3. Increase Your Organic Presence
  4. Promote Your Content with Paid Ads

A few tactics that can help boost your sales: Run Holiday Campaigns, Utilize Social eCommerce, Increase Your Organic Presence, Promote Your Content with Paid Ads

Holiday Campaigns

Your eCommerce business has the opportunity to connect with a variety of audiences but it’s imperative to create strategies, schedules and campaigns to execute this. These campaigns are where you can produce creative photos, videos, and graphics to feature products and sales.

Here Are a Few Tips to Help Establish These Campaigns:

  • Focus on a specific goal for each campaign
  • Decide how to tailor promotional content on each social channel
  • Build out templates, color palettes, themes, and visuals
  • Use relevant hashtags, account tags, and post locations
  • Maintain a cohesive voice across platforms
  • Manage, monitor, and respond consistently throughout the campaign
  • Analyze results and build new campaigns using data
  • Schedule posts in advance using a social management system (Hootsuite, Buffer)

Pro Tip: You don’t have to sell 24/7! Social media is meant to be interactive and create relationships. It’s important your eCommerce business creates specific, targeted campaigns but it’s just as important to be genuine and have fun with it.

Social eCommerce

Social eCommerce has become the newest rage for businesses to implement — it allows for shoppers to purchase directly within social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter. All of these channels can be great for advertising your featured holiday products/promotions, engaging with consumers, reaching more audiences, and more. Be sure to read each platform’s commerce policies to make sure your business qualifies for this feature.

Social eCommerce has become the newest rage for businesses to implement — it allows for shoppers to purchase directly within social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter

Organic Social

Organic social media marketing is the use of original content curated by your business without any paid promotion. Organic posts live on your company’s social channels to be seen by all of your followers/subscribers. There are many benefits to organic posts, such as brand awareness, nurturing relationships, customer service, and converting new customers.

Organic Cyber Monday Ideas:

  • Cyber Monday Countdown
  • Go Live!
  • Partner With Influencers

Organic Cyber Monday Ideas: Go Live on Facebook!

Paid Social

Paid social media marketing (advertising) is the use of paid promotions to push content across various social channels to specific audiences. Nowadays, every social channel runs some form of advertisement on its platform. According to Statista, 94% of marketers use Facebook to promote their business and 76% use Instagram. Social media advertising can be extremely helpful for eCommerce businesses trying to reach various targeted audiences.

ocial media advertising can be extremely helpful for eCommerce businesses trying to reach various targeted audiences.

Paid Social Targeting Strategies:

  • Pull contact/customer lists into ads manager
  • Pull email subscriber lists into ads manager
  • Target potential customers who have not purchased (via email lists)
  • Target existing customers through retargeting ads (via customer lists)
  • Use Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn Pixel to retarget by segmenting ads based off specific products/services purchased or viewed (abandoned carts)
  • Use your current customer and email lists to run ads to potential customers and retargeting ads to past customers
  • Target ads to specific demographics — geolocation, age, race, sex, job title, etc.

Paid Social Cyber Monday Post Ideas:

  • Create a carousel ad on Facebook and Instagram showcasing product catalogs
  • Create a 30-second video featuring sales items being used/modeled, etc.
  • Create Instagram story ads with eye-catching graphics promoting your Cyber Monday sales
  • Promote posts on Twitter and Instagram with detailed captions, tags, and hashtags
  • Schedule day-of sales posts for influencers to post promoting, using, or wearing products

Online advertisements are crucial for all eCommerce businesses, especially to increase traffic and convert sales for the holiday season.

Pro Tip: You don’t have to break the bank to advertise — there are several platforms (listed above) where you can advertise for an affordable price.

Email Campaigns

The use of email marketing for eCommerce businesses is necessary for online success. This form of marketing allows brands to send targeted and personalized emails, production updates, promotions, and newsletters to subscribers regularly. Each email can serve a different purpose — improving brand awareness, converting sales, providing informative content, retargeting subscribers/customers, or simply building relationships.

Cyber Monday is a great opportunity for your eCommerce business to build out a detailed email series to highlight sales, featured products, and other related information.

Here are some ways to produce successful email campaigns:

  1. Segment Your Lists
  2. Use Attention-Grabbing Subjects
  3. Optimize Emails for Mobile
  4. Keep it Short
  5. Run A/B Tests
  6. Retarget Abandoned Carts

Segment Subscribers for Specific Campaigns

By sending subscriber-specific segmented email campaigns, your brand can reach relevant audiences for each business goal and optimize your sending frequency through segmentation. Here are a few metrics you can use to segment your lists;

  1. Brand Engagement Levels
  2. Email Metrics (Open rates, and click rates)
  3. Location (Geotargeting)
  4. Purchase History (Target recent customers)

Use Attention-Grabbing Subject & Headlines

There are several ways to tailor subject lines to increase email open rates. Your eCommerce business can use catchy, creative subject lines depending on your content, audience, and tone. Best practices suggest to keep them short (under 9 words), personalized, descriptive, and limit punctuation or capitalization.

50 Words that increase email open rates

Optimize Email for Mobile Devices

With smartphone devices allowing us to access emails on the go, it’s important your eCommerce business optimizes content for readability on all platforms. Most email marketing systems provide this option to format messages.

Keep It Short

Email content should not be lengthy — you want to use concise text and graphics to get your message across. Make sure any HTML emails are optimized for smaller screens (mobile devices). Most email platforms used to design campaigns should have settings to tailor content.

Run A/B (Split) Tests

Email marketing is all about trial and error to meet audiences’ needs. To test components of your email (headlines, format, personalization, call-to-action-buttons, etc.), you can run split tests to see which perform better (i.e. open rates, click rates, conversions). Remember, to use unique CTA buttons and headlines for each email — don’t just recycle through the same ones.

There are also tons of email marketing services you can tap into to market your eCommerce business. Some of our favorites include HubSpot, MailChimp, and ConvertKit.

Retarget Abandoned Carts

Retargeting customers who never completed their sales is a great way to bring in more revenue. We’ll cover this more in-depth down later in this guide.

Retargeting customers who never completed their sales is a great way to bring in more revenue.

Google Ads

Digital advertising is a billion-dollar business — online ad revenue in the U.S. alone increased by 15.9% from 2018-2019, reaching $124 billion USD. Online ads can help your eCommerce business inform, persuade, and educate target audiences about your products — each can be segmented to unique audiences and specific purposes (not just selling). You can monitor and track these campaigns through analytics reports.

Google Ads is a paid advertising platform that markets by pay-per-click (PPC), meaning your company pays an amount per click or impression. There are several options when it comes to Google ads, the most common being:

  1. Search Ads
  2. Display Ads
  3. Video Ads
  4. Shopping Ads

Search Ads

Search ads are the first text link results displayed on Google search pages — they typically work best for intended transactional queries (ex. Blue shoes for sale). Implementing these ads can offer a huge advantage for your eCommerce store by getting your products featured first when potential buyers search for similar products/services — your capturing demand rather than creating it.

You can implement these ads for individual products/services using targeted keywords to highlight hot ticket items in high demand, sales products or services, and limited-time stock.

Tips for Crafting Search Ad Ideas:

  1. Always promote your sales (ex. Power Headphones | 50% off Now)
  2. Feature unique brand benefits (ex. Fitness Mecca | The Only Gym With Free Training For All)
  3. Feature Call To Action Extensions (ex. Browse Best-Selling Products, View Limited-Time Sales, Get A Quote, etc.)
  4. Reinforce your reputation with trust symbols (ex. Wooden Pallets for Sale | The Official Supplier for Home Depot)

Pro Tip: Make sure you don’t forget to tailor descriptive text below linked text to drive traffic.

Search Ad Example:

Tips for Crafting Search Ad Ideas: Feature a Call to Action

Display Ads

Display ads are typically images (or graphics) shown on web pages within Google — they typically work best for remarketing and generating demand. Google Display Network hosts a wide variety of websites that allow these ads on their platforms — site owners receive revenue per click and impression.

Your eCommerce store can display these ads based on similar products searched, websites selling relevant products or services, and sites/forums talking about your products/services (or industry).

Cyber Monday Display Ad Ideas:

  1. Create witty banner ads using bright graphics/backgrounds with sales mentioned
  2. Create high-quality images with text highlighting product and promotion simultaneously
  3. Create a unique landing page to reinforce the messaging used in the ad

Here are a few examples of amazing display ads:

Cyber Monday Display Ad Examples
Cyber Monday Display Ad Examples

Video Ads

Video ads are typically between 15-30-second videos that appear on YouTube before, after or in between the content you’re viewing. Your eCommerce business can use targeted keywords to place ads within relevant videos — you can segment these ads for different demographics (location, age, gender, interests, etc.). You will only be charged when someone watches at least 30 seconds, the full length (of shorter ads), or engages with your ad (clicks). These ads can be shown in three locations: in-stream, search or display (top of right sidebar).

Cyber Monday Video Ad Ideas:

  1. Create a 30-second catalog video showcasing promotional products/services being used/modeled
  2. Create a 15-second video showcasing one to two hot ticket sale items/services and their features
  3. Create a 60-second video explaining brand, products/services, and top sales benefits for viewers to buy
  4. Create long-form customer testimonial videos to showcase trust

Check out this awesome video made by Slack:

Shopping Ads

Shopping ads are product listings driven by keywords and automatic keyword targeting that generate sponsored products at the top of a Google search query — they typically work best using high-quality product images with the pr