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How to run a successful Black Friday + Cyber Monday sale

As we near the holidays the number of shoppers visiting your listings will increase substantially and running a promotion (sale) can boost your conversion rates by up to 60%. In fact, during Black Friday + Cyber Monday 2018 Teespring sellers who ran a sale during this time saw their conversion rates double! 

Ultimately, your goal is to make sure all of your audience knows a sale is coming up and drive as many purchases as possible during the sale. Keep in mind this guide can be used at any time, not just during the holidays. Below you’ll find Teespring’s step by step video guide on how to run a successful sale. Continue reading below for more info on each step and links to the tools we mention in the video.

 

Step 1) Plan a sale schedule

First you’ll need to determine your promotion schedule for the next few weeks. Do you want to run several sales leading up to Black Friday and Cyber Monday? Or do you want to run a blow out sale during Cyber Weekend only?

The most successful Teespring sellers tend to run sales throughout November and December. Last year promo code usage began to pick up on November 11th and promotional sales significantly spiked three days before Black Friday 2018 began. 

Aphmau promoting limited edition products for a Black Friday sale in 2018

 

This year, you’ve got several different promotional periods to take advantage of. Here are the most popular:

November 11 – 27th: Early bird sales

Every year Teespring sellers offer promotions leading up to Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Because these sales are run before Cyber Weekend, they’re typically called ‘early bird sales’ or ‘presales’. 

When running a presale it’s very important to NOT offer the same promotion or discount you plan to offer during Cyber Weekend. If you’re running an early bird sale, make sure to communicate to shoppers this presale will be different compared to your Cyber Weekend sale. For example, your pre-sale will focus on currently available products and your Cyber Weekend sale will revolve around totally new products or limited edition merch you plan to add to your store. Another example is offering free shipping during your pre-sale and then dropping prices on specific items during your Black Friday sale.

November 29th – December 2nd: Black Friday + Cyber Monday

On November 29th (Black Friday) online purchases will skyrocket and the shopping frenzy will continue through December 2nd (Cyber Monday). This is when you’ll want to offer your biggest and best sale of the year. Last year the percent discount promo (ex. 30% off) was the most successful promotion offered during Cyber Weekend 2018 . Start your sale on Black Friday and run it through Cyber Monday to maximize orders placed during this period. 

December 3rd – 20th: Post-sale promotions

After Cyber Weekend ends people will continue shopping all the way through December. Consider offering a variety of mini-sales (2 – 3 days at a time) leading up to December 20th (Teespring’s Christmas delivery cutoff date) to take advantage of the holiday hype and drive more purchases. 

Pro tip: Once you’ve decided on a schedule make sure to write it down. This way you can keep track of of your promotions, promo codes, and dates at a glance. 

Example of a sale schedule featuring dates, details, and promo codes

 

Step 2) Create promo codes

Now that you’ve got a schedule it’s time to create your promotions.You can create promo codes instantly in your Teespring account and turn their active status to ‘off’ until it’s time to run your sale. This way you can prepare your promotional assets and prevent people from using the discount until you’re ready. 

You can create three different types of promotions with Teespring; free shipping (US delivery only), a discount amount (like $3), or a discount percent (like 10% off). Check out the video below for more info on each promotion and how to create them. 

Don’t forget promo codes can be applied to all of your products. This means you’ll need to ensure there’s enough profit margin to support the promo…no matter what product is being purchased. For example, if you’re offering a ‘$3 off’ discount and a shopper adds a sticker to their shopping cart, the sticker will need to have at least $3 in profit margin for the shopper to be able to use the promo code. 

 

Step 3) Prepare promotional assets

You’ve got your promo codes and dates so let’s prepare promotional assets we can use to promote the sale. Below are a few social media assets that were created with canva.com, a free design platform that requires no graphic design skills. You’ll find lots of customizable, pre-made templates that are perfect for sharing on sites like Facebook and Instagram available in Canva. You can use these images in email marketing messages too.

Placeit also offers professionally designed graphic assets you can easily customize and share. They’ve just released video intros, end cards, banner designs, and YouTuber logos for creators too. Apart from the promotional assets Placeit is great for creating unlimited product designs, lifestyle mockups, videos and more—you can get Placeit for $11.96 per month if you sign up with Teespring now.  If you’re planning on advertising your products both Canva and Placeit have ad templates you can use, and there are a variety of other online design tools available to create mobile-friendly images. 

Teespring sellers confirm customer selfies are perfect for sharing on social media as well as generating engagement and excitement around your products. Also, featuring photos of yourself wearing samples of your merch can increase your sales by up to 60%! If you don’t have time to order your sample keep in mind Placeit offers top quality lifestyle mockups you can customize with your product designs. Head to the ‘Listings’ section of your account now to order a sample of your merch.

@quietcoolkid using merch sample photos to drive engagement and promote her sale

Don’t forget your storefront banner is a prime location to shout about promotions you’re running.You will definitely want to optimize your store for the holidays and prepare banners ahead of time to show off your sale to shoppers.

Pro tip: If you’ve got the ability to create video content now is the time to do it! Create an engaging video that can be shared via social media (e.g. Stories) to drum up excitement for your sale.

 

Step 4) Draft promotional posts + emails

Next let’s draft our promotional posts and emails. By drafting your content ahead of time it’ll be easy for you to generate awareness and drive the most purchases possible during your sale.

Draft messages to post on social media and through other channels like email. Don’t forget you can use Teespring’s buyer message tool to email past customers and turn them into repeat shoppers. 

Important: Do NOT tell shoppers about an upcoming sale too far in advance—this can discourage them from purchasing until the sale begins. Wait to share promo codes with your audience until 1 – 2 days ahead of time (and only activate the codes on the day the sale starts). If you don’t want to share promo codes ahead of time, you can advise your audience to keep an eye on social media (or their email inbox) for the promo code the day the sale begins. 

Check out this example of a post/email schedule for Cyber Weekend (created using Google Sheets). This creator is planning to publish multiple social posts and emails before and during the sale. The goal of this messaging is to notify shoppers of an impending sale as well as to remind them to take advantage of the discount while the sale is going on. See the button below to download the sheet and use it for your own planning.

 

 

Pro tip: Ask customers to tag you in photos and videos once they receive their merch. You can use this content later as social proof to drive further engagement and purchases. 

 

Step 5) Promote your sale

Last but not least, you’ve got to promote your sale. Now it’s time to spread the word about your upcoming sale and remind buyers to take advantage of this special offer. Follow the promotional schedule you created, activate your promo codes at the right time, and watch the orders roll in! If you’re looking for extra tips check out our promotional guide to help you increase holiday sales on Instagram too!

Ready to put these tips to the test?

 

 

 

6 responses to “How to run a successful Black Friday + Cyber Monday sale

  1. Avatar Heloísa Caroline dos santos Costa says:

    Seus vídeos São muito bons

    1. Kate Shoaf Kate Shoaf says:

      Obrigado! 🙂

  2. Avatar Dave says:

    Expensive junk.
    Graphics washed off first wash.
    Not happy!

    1. Kate Shoaf Kate Shoaf says:

      Hey Dave – that’s definitely not normal. If you contact support@teespring.com they’ll be able to assist you and find a solution.

  3. Avatar Yolanda Rahier says:

    I WANTED TO KNOW IF IT IS POSSIBLE TO BUY AFTER CHRISTMAS, PLEASE THINK ABOUT IT, WE GET MONEY THEN, IT WILL BE A GOOD TIME TO BUY!!!! THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

    1. Avatar Lucy Ford says:

      Hey! Of course you can buy after Christmas 🙂

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