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With Black Friday and Cyber Monday right around the corner, you’re probably wondering how best to capitalize on the massive seasonal sales. This week we’ve got a quick guide to getting your store in the best shape possible.
For most of these steps it’s helpful to have a second set of eyes. Consider asking a friend or a fellow entrepreneur to take a look at your store as you work and get their opinions on the different elements.

Last Minute Store Updates for an Explosive Black Friday and Cyber Monday

1. Nail Your Product Copy and Images
2. Take Another Look at the User Experience
3. Market Your Sale
4. Build on Your Success for Long-Term Engagement

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1.Nail Your Product Copy and Images

You’ll want to start by going over the copy and imagery on your whole site, but especially on landing pages and in product pages.

Landing pages are your initial introduction to potential customers and need to be instantly engaging and seductive. Remember that you have limited time and space to prove that your site is reputable and that your products are quality. Go through your copy and look for over-the-top, hyperbolic language (i.e. “the miracle plant”) and ask yourself whether you would make a purchase from a similar site. Look at your imagery as well. Is the page too busy? Does it have enough visual elements to be eye-catching?

Product pages are there to seal the deal. Turning an interested consumer into a paying customer takes a fine eye for detail and some tactful nudging in the right direction. Go through these pages one-by-one. Take another look at your product photos, and follow our helpful guide to creating great product images. Double-check spelling and punctuation, but don’t stop there. We’ve gone into this process in detail in our post on writing descriptions that drive sales, but to summarize:

  • Explore both features (i.e. the physical make-up of the product) and benefits (what value the product will bring to the user’s life)
  • Highlight both the benefits of the product and negatives avoided
  • Make sure your descriptions are formatted for easy readability
  • Tell your customers a story- how is the product made? why is it done this way? what is the philosophy behind your business?

Once these pages are in good shape, have a friend go through and explore your offerings. A second set of eyes can be a great way to see how your store appears to someone exploring it for the first time.

2. Take Another Look at the User Experience

Your store should be as user-friendly and easy to navigate as possible. Go through your categories and take a look at what’s contained within them. Do all of the products contained in each subset make sense in their current location? Test all the links in your store to make sure that they’re working properly.

If you don’t already have an FAQ section, now is a great time to make one. This way you can minimize questions and help customers solve their problems quickly and efficiently. Remember: the less friction in the buying process, the better your conversion rate.

Call-to-action colors—or specific visual elements you only use for buy buttons and other actions—can be a great way to help users navigate your site with minimal effort. Choose a color that matches the rest of your branding but stands out enough to be instantly recognizable.

Finally, test-buy a product from beginning to end. While you’ll want to ideally collect some information in the sales process (more on that later) this process should be as streamlined and simple as possible.

A woman tests UI on her tablet, just as you would before a big sale and holiday season

3. Market Your Sale

This probably goes without saying. The trick here is to use a range of platforms to connect with your audience and remind them that great deals are just a click away. Use your social media and email list to connect with as many potential customers as possible. Consider offering discounts for returning shoppers.

Specific discounts and deals for the holiday are another important aspect of a successful Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Remember that free or reduced shipping costs are a big deal for many consumers, and the number one cause of cart abandonment is extra costs like shipping and taxes being too high. If you can feasibly offer a deal on shipping, do it.

If you have a blog, create some content related to your upcoming sale. This can be as simple as exploring your products in a little extra detail or collecting positive reviews that you’ve received. Share your posts on social and encourage engagement.

4. Build on Your Success for Long-Term Engagement

Don’t sell and say goodbye- instead, build relationships and repeat business to sustain you over time. Done right, your sales at this point in the year will be rocketfuel for your business in 2019.

Essentially, the key to success will be turning your first time customers into returning customers, and your returning customers into engaged fans of your brand. The most important step here is gathering emails for your list. Luckily, this isn’t tough to do in the checkout process.

From here, you can connect with your audience over time. Offer them discounts, unique content, and rewards for sharing your products. While Black Friday and Cyber Monday are perfect days to offer sales, it can be right balance between tempting and spoiling your customer base with deals and discounts, so check out this essential guide to using them effectively. The repeat business you can generate from a successful business will be absolutely vital over time, so spend time crafting your communications and bargains after Cyber Monday. With even more holidays following close on the heels, you have a chance to engage with these customers again and draw them back for Christmas, Hanukkah, and maybe even New Years.

Ready for a successful sale? Let us know your tips and tricks for making it into the black this holiday season.

About the author

Bryce Patterson

Bryce Patterson

Bryce is a social media specialist and content marketer at Selz. Outside of giving businesses and non-profits a more human, relatable voice; Bryce has written a novel, worked on a comic book, and played in a handful of bands. He lives in Colorado.


  1. Naomi

    When you test-buy a product, should I do, or someone else?

    1. Tara Storozynsky Selz

      Tara Storozynsky

      Hi Naomi, thanks for your insightful comment! Ideally, you’ll want to go through yourself and test-buy a product, from start to finish. Usually, there are no issues, but always good just to do a test, especially when you’re incorporating coupon codes or discounted prices. Once everything is good to go, it doesn’t hurt to ask a friend or team member to check the process out as well! The more certain you can be, the better. Thanks for checking out FounderU, and have a happy holiday selling season!

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