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How can small businesses prepare for Black Friday?


Are you taking part in Black Friday?

 

The American import has become firmly ensconced in the UK business calendar, despite various controversies. Whilst big brands can see Black Friday sales spiral out of control, small businesses are unlikely to see such chaos. Plus, the lure of a day when so many people are ready to shop is hard to resist.  

So, if you’ve made the choice to get involved, what should you do?

Be legit

This week, it’s been reported that some Black Friday deals may not be all they seem. A study by Which? tracked items sold on Black Friday and found that 49% of them were cheaper at other times of the year. If you are going to take part, make sure that your deals are genuinely strong – it only takes one eagle eyed customer to turn your sale into a PR nightmare!

Spread out the deals

If condensing all your sales into one day sounds just to chaotic, try spreading the deals out over a longer time period. Amazon’s Black Friday deals run for two weeks, whilst Argos’ runs for 7 days. Eeking out the deals can allow you to manage your resources better, and ensure that you don’t get overwhelmed.

Spread the word

Use social media to let the world know about your sales- use the hashtag #blackfriday in all posts to make sure that you reach the maximum amount of people. It’s also worth letting local newspapers know about any deals you have, as they may well be writing round up posts about deals.

Ensure you’re well supported

Whether it’s longer opening hours, laying on more staff or ensuring you’ve got access to tech support, take steps to make sure that you’re able to handle an increase in customers. If you’ve taken part in Black Friday before, you likely to know much you’re likely to see in increased sales. If not, it could be something of a shot in the dark. How busy you’ll be depends on the nature of your product, how much you’ll be marketing your deals, and how steep your discounts are. Electricals in particular seem to get Black Friday shoppers excited.

Get customer data

Don’t let your new customers splash the cash only to disappear, never to be seen again! Use the opportunity to get as much customer data as you can. If you have physical premises try to capture addresses, emails and phone numbers. If your business is online, maximise every opportunity to get customers signed up to your mailing list.

Alternatively, give Black Friday a miss entirely, and gear up for Small Business Saturday, on the 3rd December, instead.

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