If you’ve been in e-commerce long, you already know how it goes. Copy-pasting coupon codes into digital shopping carts is the new pushing through crowds on Black Friday.

The market is wide open for a boost in holiday e-commerce sales, particularly during Cyber 5 weekend. But the uptick in online shopping this time of year also means increased competition, supply chain overload, and a higher risk of site crashes. 😬

For sellers looking to tap into the forecasted $39 billion in online sales this holiday season, prepping for Cyber 5 is key. And believe it or not, it’s still not too late to get ahead of the game.

How to Prep for Cyber 5 Weekend

  • Why It’s All About Cyber 5
  • 5 Things You Can Still Do for a Winning Cyber 5 Weekend
  • Making the Most of Cyber 5 2022

Need a boost in your Q4 cash flow? We’ve got you covered. From affordable multi-currency payments to flexible working capital, SellersFunding is the funding partner for e-commerce entrepreneurs by e-commerce entrepreneurs.

Why It’s All About Cyber 5

If you’re here, you probably know all about the high-stakes Cyber 5 weekend. But just in case, here’s a quick recap.

Cyber 5 is the long weekend that includes Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, Sunday, and of course, Cyber Monday. In 2022, the dates for Cyber 5 are Thursday, November 24th to Monday, November 28th.

In the world of e-commerce, Cyber 5 is a pretty big deal. Nearly 40% of all Black Friday dollars were spent online in 2021 during this period. While 60.5 million customers visited brick-and-mortar stores, 88 million shopped online.

While holiday shopping may have traditionally started just after Thanksgiving, the dates are moving earlier and earlier year after year. This year, with fear of inflation on their minds, customers are already buying holiday gifts to avoid increased costs toward year-end.

Without missing a beat, many e-commerce sellers and platforms, including Amazon, have bumped up their sale days, offering deals as early as the first week of October. But that doesn’t mean the November to December shopping period is cooling. In fact, NetElixir predicts a 7% YoY increase in sales during the 2022 holiday season.

But if you’re slow getting started this year, don’t worry! You’ve still got time to prep for a profitable Cyber 5.

Before you can know where you’re going, it’s important to remember where you’ve been. For a look back on last year’s biggest holiday shopping trends, don’t miss these holiday season e-commerce lessons.

5 Things You Can Still Do for a Winning Cyber 5 Weekend

#1. Revamp your emails.

As Cyber 5 gets closer, it’s time to up your communication game. This includes your marketing emails, returns communications, follow up with past customers, and more.

Today, 91% of people open their email inboxes daily. This is just one of the reasons email marketing has proven to be 40 times more effective than social media. Getting your email game in order is always a great strategy to prime your customers for Cyber 5. And, it doesn’t have to take up a lot of your time.

Here are a few ideas to improve your email marketing and communication strategy:

  • Launch holiday-themed emails. If possible, link them to any existing social media or influencer marketing campaigns.
  • Customize text, subject lines, and push notifications to connect directly with customers.
  • Don’t be afraid to think outside the box.

For example, a last-minute holiday gift guide or subscriber-only complementary offer or bundle could be just the thing to catch your shopper’s eye as they rush to check items off their holiday lists.

#2. Broaden your marketing and sales channels.

Diversifying your reach is important regardless of the season. But during Cyber 5, it matters even more.

Holiday shoppers are known to channel-hop to find the best offers. Many are experts at comparing in-app promos, third-party coupon codes, and in-store-only promotions to find the best possible deals.

So how do you know which channels to optimize? 

McKinsey lays out three omnichannel options to consider — commerce, personalization, and ecosystem. Simply pick the track that best fits your customer needs and brand goals.

  • Commerce: Cross-channel shopping experience between in-store and online. Example: BOPIS (buy online, pick up in store) options.
  • Personalization: Tailored cross-channel engagement. Example: Customizable user experiences in online stores.
  • Ecosystem: Multi-channel platforms integrated with consumer lifestyle and community. Example: Loyalty programs.

Whatever approach you choose, tailor your omnichannel experience to a holiday theme. Offer deals on exclusive gifting products, launch in-app holiday experiences, and utilize social media channels to foster a warm, one-on-one relationship with customers.

#3. Plan for increased traffic.

The online holiday frenzy is real. A survey by Queue-It found that website traffic from November 1 to December 1, 2021 skyrocketed by 57% in 2021 compared to 2020.

To keep up with the surge in traffic, your website needs to have the bandwidth to work fast. Think With Google reports that although mobile web traffic accounts for more total traffic than desktop, conversion rates are lower on mobile, with the biggest reason being slower load times.

As page load time goes from one second to ten, the probability of a mobile-user bouncing increases by 123%. Talk about short attention spans!

If you take time to do anything before Cyber 5, focus on revamping and restructuring your online interface, particularly mobile sites, by reducing image sizes and redirects to optimize the user experience. You can also make the user experience more seamless by:

  • Testing all features on all devices (desktop, mobile, tablets) before launching to avoid any potential bugs.
  • Simplifying the checkout process by automating coupon applications or saving customer info.
  • Customizing all landing pages to highlight bestsellers and other high-traffic pages for faster, easier access

#4. Customize your Cyber 5 products and offers.

When it comes to planning your Cyber 5 offers, one size doesn’t always fit all. In the modern world of e-commerce, personalized and themed offers work wonders for boosting sales.

But before you offer big discounts to outrun your competitors, double-check to make sure:

  • Your holiday promos won’t greatly affect your profit margins.
  • Your offers reflect your customer data. Gather insights via surveys and interviews asking which discounts are most likely to make a customer follow through on a purchase.
  • You’re offering great shipping deals 66% of consumers expect free shipping when making an online purchase.

#5. Last but not least, assess your risks.

As of August 2022, 90% of sellers have had to adjust their planning due to supply chain disruptions. Not only that, 80% have already seen an increase in supply chain costs – and the holiday season hadn’t even started yet!

However, there are some optimistic signs that point toward a more stable supply chain. The US Supply Chain Index rose above neutral and indicators that measure time and cost of shipping fell to their lowest levels since December 2020.

But if we’ve learned anything in recent years, it’s that it always helps to have a plan B (or even a plan C) when it comes to shipping and fulfillment.

Here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Be on the lookout for early shoppers. With customers planning to start their holiday shopping earlier than usual as well, make sure you have enough inventory early.
  • Check in on cash flow. Holiday costs add up. Whether it’s inventory or hiring extra staff, keeping tabs on your budget can sometimes take a backseat during the busy holiday season. Make sure you have a strong cash flow plan to keep your holiday sales on track.
  • Are your fulfillment partners ready for the rush? If you’re using third-party fulfillment, make sure to ship your inventory early.

Making the Most of Cyber 5 2022

Whether you’re a new seller or a seasoned player, Cyber 5 weekend can be a great launching pad to not only make sales, but dramatically increase customer acquisition.

By offering great deals backed by a seamless customer experience, e-commerce merchants can scale their brands to whole new levels, all on the back of this one holiday shopping event.

When you’re ready to turn your Cyber 5 sales goals into a reality, SellersFunding is here to help.

“It was the end of last year, which is the busiest season for Amazon sellers, and I was working with a different online lender,” says Ibrahim Toure, serial e-commerce entrepreneur and owner of Sambi LLC. With just two days before Black Friday, Ibrahim needed cash fast in order to keep his Q4 inventory flowing.

“The lender took back their capital. I had two days to find money because Black Friday is the biggest day for online sales. For us, it’s also the biggest day for online purchases. So, I was shopping around for different partners who could provide the capital quickly.”

Fortunately, Ibrahim found the SellersFunding Daily Advance and was able to secure $200,000 in two days to buy more inventory and fuel his Cyber 5 sales. If you’re ready for flexible terms that help you grow without the fine print headaches and personal collateral, learn more about our e-commerce funding solutions today.

 

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