November 18, 2020

Last Minute BFCM Strategies for E-Commerce Sites

It’s no secret that Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales are getting more popular every year. The National Retail Federation has reported that approximately 20% of total annual retail sales come from the holiday season. It’s also no secret that the sales start earlier and earlier every year, causing the opportunity to increase business for both brick-and-mortar and e-commerce sites to grow exponentially. According to Adobe Digital, e-commerce purchases on Black Friday and Cyber Monday hit a new total record in 2019 of $16.8 billion.

Don’t let the holiday season get ahead of you, get ahead of the holiday season!

Watch the video below of Perfect Audience’s General manager and AI Lab Director to hear what you can be doing this holiday season to take advantage of increased online shopping volumes!

Retargeting ads are a great and simple way to reach customers who have already been to your website. Try retargeting online advertising with Perfect Audience for free today!



Hey everybody, happy Tuesday. Jalali and I were putting together a simple step-by-step sort of how-to practical things you can do this week in order to get up to speed for Black Friday and Cyber Monday. And this whole conversation centered around Jalali and I talking, I don’t know, maybe six or seven days ago, something like that about what happens when. you’re trying to get up and running. And how fast sort Black Friday sneaks up on you. Especially with everybody working from home. And so we thought we’d put together a couple of quick tips that you could enable and get started on today. So with that, just run through this real quick with you. So Amazon Prime has exceeded yet again 2020 over 2019. They’ve set another record of 10.4 billion this year on prime day. So there is a super, e-commerce in general has just been, what’s the right word Jalali.. there’s in the month of March, we’ve shown slides in the past where e-commerce has eclipsed like a previous 10 years worth of e-commerce gains, you know in the last three months, this last spring as everybody was working from home due to Covid, so really what we’re looking at is the next sort of big boom going into the fall where it’s already a busy, big buying season. And it’s just going to accelerate. Anything you wanted to add to that?


Yeah i think the thing about it sneaking up and we, you and I, have been doing this for 20 years, e-commerce holiday season, trying to get prepped for it, and no matter what we do it almost seems like it always sneaks up on us and we’re like in business. So I think it’s less whatever 31 days from Black Friday, you need to have those campaigns kind of planned, ready to go now, almost starting now to kind of hit that. i think the other thing we’re seeing that 10 times growth in, or 10 years of growth in like a couple of months. That is not this prime day data that we’re seeing is good, but I think we’re going to see even more than that once everybody kind of gets up and running. but in our own personal dealings with people like I’ve seen restaurants and stores that didn’t offer delivery go out of business. And I’ve seen restaurants and stores that were offering delivery just booming. We have a couple of case studies where suddenly just because they had all that set up, now they’re like, they’re leaps and bounds ahead of their neighbors. And I think you know the Shopify stuff blowing up. So it’s just coming up quick and it’s a great time to kind of recoup any losses you might have or down quarters or whatever.


Right. It’s really when we all make our money here. yeah so that’s a stat that everybody in the advertising business points to where 40% of your ad budgets are typically carved out for a Q4. Obviously in the, this year being a sort of strange year I think for everybody’s advertising budgets, it’s especially important as you’re looking at working on trying to finish out the year as strong as you can, some e-commerce brands are doing exceptionally well that, you know I’ve said this before on multiple conversations, but we really do sort of have this view of a cross-section of the internet. And with thousands of advertisers and campaigns and we just see a lot of what’s really working for advertisers and what’s not working. So one of the things that we’re seeing is a tremendous explosion around the e-commerce space. And so we’re certainly, Q4 should be a fairly strong year, or a quarter sorry. So I wanted to share this slide just really quickly just to give you a sense and sort of recalibrate a little bit. So this is sort of what’s happening in a post Covid environment or a mid-Covid environment depending on how you look at it and what you read. The way we are seeing, especially things like Instacart and other types of delivery, Jalali you mentioned restaurants a few minutes ago, this is amazing to me, there’s a tremendous amount of growth that’s happening where you see a fairly decent amount of opportunities that are popping up, and these aren’t really opportunities that are going to go away. These are certainly just here to stay. And really just going to continue to accelerate. So what do we do right? I mean, we could, one of the things that I did not want to do on this particular quick discussion that we’re having this video is give you a bunch of high strategy and things like that to go and sort of ponder and put down a book for which you can one day do down the road.


So really what I was looking to do is, what are three, four, five really practical things that you can just jump on this week and sort of finish out the week strong and feel good, you know? Going into, and sort of if you’re already ahead that’s great. These are things that you could do to augment what you’re already doing or layer on what you’re already doing. Or if you’re sort of like, oh my gosh I got to get something going, what can I do in a pretty short period of time that’s going to be effective. This is for you as well. So just through this together real quick, just to give you an idea, so there, we just created four things really.. So if Jalali, do you wanna talk about, you can just pick one in any of the orders, it doesn’t matter, we can go through real quick.


Yeah I just wanna, so I wanna mention one overarching, one that I think you’re kind of assuming and that is, get your retargeting pixels installed right? So a lot of times people are coming to us with like, what should the strategy be and when should we do what, it’s almost like putting an email opt-in on your website. Like you’re getting, you’re not capturing those people that you could use during the holidays and after the holidays. So that’s kind of one, I think the one that stands out to me is so dynamic. Yeah, so I mean, if I was to pick one, it’s basically matching things up. I think having a consistent, we’re doing that right now, like so we’ve been tagging visitors and tagging users all year long. The messaging is now moving to, it’s now the holidays. There’s some urgency to come sign up for Perfect Audience. So I think everything you’ve been collecting, everything you do. Now is the time to start putting in place that multi-channel message like it’s a discount for free shipping, it’s a special product that sells well that you’re going to use to drive people in and acquire. But that’s a lot you can be doing right now just by getting those segments kind of organized.


I think your email marketing and your retargeting, who’s going to get one message going into this. I think that’s a good point. And that’s, you’re right. You know, the tag itself is sort of the underlying piece that supports all of these things. But for number one on the list, one of the things that I’ve always experienced, just owning my own e-commerce companies and you know B2B sites and things is, I always think after the fact, or sorry regret after the fact that I could have captured all of this really high converting traffic had the pixel installed during the season. So these are when people are coming to your site, they might only visit during Black Friday, Cyber Monday, you’re already doing these other campaigns, there’s already a lot of other traffic that’s already coming to the site. Whether it’s organically or just high intent, high shopper period of time. And you know, you get to take advantage of that over the long term right? You don’t, what typically happens is, I talk to advertisers, is they say, oh well you know I’ve got my core period of time and Black Friday, Cyber Monday, leading up to the holiday or Christmas, and then what ends up happening is my traffic drops off in January and that’s absolutely true. One of the things that. you can do here to help extend that long tail out is by tracking people today, or sorry building an audience today based on that high intent traffic, and then retargeting them or sending them ads, bringing them back for post buying season. And you’re able to get use out of that audience or extend the use out of that audience that you’re already paying for right? I mean you’ve already got your campaigns up and running for other things. This just allows you to be able to extend it further into the year. And that helps you drive down your overall CPA.


The other thing is dynamic campaigns. So if you have a product data feed you’re already using, Google Merchant Center or whatever, product specific campaigns are going with your ad logo, your call to action with your specific product that that person had visited is going to be much more effective than say a standard ad that you would be running, say, brand building or whatnot. So I do like those as well. And then Jalali, you talk a lot about the email going alongside your, in parallel to your email campaign, you wanna touch on that one?


Yeah so, email’s this weird thing. I think it’s kind of changing a lot since we probably started in the industry, I built a number of businesses just using email. And it’s what the technology is kind of turned to, is like the message that you’re getting email needs to match the message they’re getting. Now they’re retargeting needs to match what they’re seeing in social media. And that’s kind of what we, Perfect Audience, allows you to do. The other thing I think that’s important is email as a, email list as a retargeting audience, can be as effective as actually sending that person an email. What that means is all these platforms including Perfect audience, allow us to show an ad to someone based on knowing their email address. So they’re not cookies necessarily, but we know we are able to follow them around. So I think just getting real smart about that like in the old days, you used to just like last everybody, everything, and now it’s really, okay this person has purchased, they should be getting a 20% off coupon. This person is a new prospect, maybe let’s give them a 40% off their first order, you know? Like getting very specific about that stuff depending on what level you’re at. I know there’s probably people out there that are very advanced, people are just starting.


The other thing that I can kind of see all the time that is a simple one is, so Amazon has kind of set with Prime’s free shipping thing. Which is kind of detrimental as a small merchant. I think you can attest, you get used to just the next day the thing shows up for free basically. But really all they’ve done, they just built that into their prices. And i think sometimes a new merchant will come on and they’re trying to compete with like an Amazon, and you need to kind of put that in place. Like, they’re offering free shipping just baking in your price at least some level where you can get this thing for free. That level of kind of service is what people have come to expect. And when you don’t have it, I don’t know about you Eric, but I will not buy, I will choose a slightly higher price on Amazon just because I want to deal with the thing. Same thing with delivery. There’s one restaurant in my town, they’re not on Doordash, it’s like do you, I literally cannot stand to call them in and give my credit card anymore right? It’s like what was the last four digits like this nightmare of a process that’s just shifted, especially during this. So yeah, we as retailers have to be on the honor you know. We have to have all of that stuff has to be single click. Checkout, free shipping, no hassle, no hassle returns. Like it’s just the bar has gotten raised a little bit and I see these people with kind of legacy websites and stuff where it’s like they’re not even remotely competing in those regards. And i think we have to think about that stuff.


Like Amazon is a big player, and they have set a bar. And if you’re not following at least up to that, it’s very easy, just click off and go over to Amazon. So I think that’s the thing, I don’t know, email what do you suggest for what do you do on your sites Eric for email, like what works?


Yeah so I spend a little bit of time, or used to anyway, in my past life you know as I’d owned a couple of e-commerce companies, we would spend time focusing on segmenting the lists, the email lists, and then creating ads that matched up. So sort of to your point, where they are in, sort of match them up to where they are in the buying cycle. So if somebody is sort of higher in the funnel, and more, they maybe have just come through and we picked them up through an email, through like an Exit Pop or something like that, we would send them a different type of offer. But the key here is everybody’s heard the same sort of number right? You need seven impressions before you actually get somebody to act on a particular offer or request. And so in this particular case we are sort of doubling down on that right? What we’re doing is we’re sending out an email that has you know, certain amount, certain creative, and certain offer in it. And maybe some product images or something like that, and then what I would do is I would also have ads that would come alongside of that and sort of mimic what was happening in the email.


So you know, and a lot of times I mean you guys, everybody knows this that’s listening, is you know, what ends up happening is you open the email, you get super busy, you sort of archive it or you save it maybe for a later day or something like that. And because it’s interesting, but you don’t really ever come back to it. But what would happen it you also saw the exact same color scheme and image and offer and ad creative out there in the wild as you’re surfing the web. And you’re on CNN or you’re on a social, you’re on Facebook or wherever right? It’s sort of just jars your memory a little bit and brings you back to why you saved the email in the first place. So it’s really hitting them in a couple of different channels at the same time and then of course you can do that in other ways too right? If you do direct mail pieces, if you do some sort of social campaign, you have the ability to sort of get a sort of a consistent messaging and branding across all your different channels. Yeah so it’s upon us. you know, we’re less than 30 days out. We definitely have time. I think one thing I’ll just close with on this is you can use these deadlines, these events as various distinct, like use that to your advantage to set urgency so specials that last if you want to get it in time for the holidays you need to by it by x. If you want free shipping you’ve got to buy more than dollars maybe or something like that. You can use these kinds of things, this urgency, this confluence of everybody’s that’s gunna be coming to the web. If you’re like me, within a couple of days and trying to buy all your gifts right? So to Eric’s point, that’s not only a time to get sales, it’s a time to accumulate audience for the rest of the year, either in the form of email acquisitions or just tagging that visitor to remarket to them. You can set that window 90 days or 60 days or whatever it is. But yeah, incredible time right now to take advantage if you’re in the e-commerce game. This is the time to kind of capitalize on it. We’re here so we have a team of people that will help you get set up, and actually there’s even free ad credit that we offer. So if you want a little boost this holiday season, just let us know and get to kind of get that set up for you where they can. Jalali, do you want to just talk real quick where they reach out to us with that?


Yeah actually this, the address you’re seeing here, is a perfect example. We have a team of people that will help keep your ads set up and get you going. Literally just go to and click on the free account that will set you up with a hundred dollars to start. And then you basically just write in, we’ll help you make sure everything’s set up correctly, and give you another 150 off the bat. So for a lot of small stores, that’s a good little boost to get you going here, get the traffic going, figure out what’s working. So I definitely take advantage of that. There’s no catch or anything. We’re not like, there’s no, so sure sounds good. Yeah so I appreciate just everybody joining. Like I know you a ton of people follow our videos and watch these things. And you know, so we do spend some time putting these things together. This is one of those little short ones just to provide frankly just a little bit of inspiration for you. Sometimes you just need that little extra boost to knock some things up for the week. And you know you can sort of feel good about the accomplishments of the week. So this is, these are always fun and we enjoy putting these things together. Hope you found it super helpful. If there’s any questions you have, feel free to reach out to us and we’ll talk to you next time. Thanks, okay thanks Eric.

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A.I. Lab

AI Lab Director - Perfect Audience: Serving as both AI Lab Director of Perfect Audience and CMO of Robauto, Jalali is a proven thought leader and engineer in the field of innovation and new technology. He is credited with creating breakthrough technology products, companies, and lasting IP in e-commerce, A/B testing, social media, and artificial intelligence.
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