Black Friday is not cancelled: 2020 trends and tips
Will Black Friday still go ahead this year? When is it? And will it look different to usual?
Black Friday falls on the fourth Friday every November – and, despite 2020 having been a year like no other, it is very much set to go ahead as planned this year- Friday 27th November 2020.
With the ‘rule of six’ likely to stay in place until Christmas, and face coverings and restrictions in place in shops across the country due to the Coronavirus outbreak, it’s likely that even more of us will be hunting for our Black Friday purchases online this year.
Here are our Black Friday predictions, and our top tips on how to maximise voucher sales this year:
Skip the queues
There’s no doubting that Black Friday sales have been increasingly ‘online over offline’ in the last few years anyway, but we expect to see this accelerate in 2020 as shoppers seek to avoid the queues imposed by retailers to adhere to social distancing rules. Make sure to emphasise the benefits of shopping online in your messaging to your customers. Queuing in the rain, or bargain hunting from the comfort of home. We know which we would choose...
If this year has taught us anything, it is not to take for granted time spent with family and friends (in real life) – so promoting experience vouchers as gifts seems highly appropriate. Gifting a voucher for an afternoon tea, gourmet dining experience, spa treatment or hotel stay gives someone something to look forward to in a world where everything feels a little gloomy at the moment. It is like saying: ‘there are good times to come...’
So, make sure your Black Friday sale includes experience gift vouchers, perfect for gifting this Christmas. You can set the redemption dates, so opt for Jan – March 2021 to fill your shoulder months, or Sunday – Friday only if your midweek bookings are needing a boost. Bear in mind though, that with restrictions still in place, people are likely to be cautious about making any plans for the next few months, so it may be wise to also include some vouchers that are less heavily discounted, but have a longer redemption period for reassurance. Or at least make it clear that you will extend vouchers or move bookings at no charge should covid-19 restrictions prevent the voucher from being redeemed.
Some of our top selling Black Friday offers for our hotel, restaurant and spa clients in recent years have been value-added credit vouchers, or discounts on monetary vouchers.
For example, offer a 10% additional credit on a voucher bought for £100. The customer pays £100 but receives a £110 voucher.
We would recommend setting the redemption dates again on these types of vouchers, in order to fill your quieter months, and we often see customers spend these vouchers almost immediately on a high value booking in order to secure their visit.
Within our Gift Voucher Brilliance solution, you can create a discount code, but also restrict it. For example, you can pick and choose which vouchers it applies to. Maybe a customer must spend a certain amount or buy two or more vouchers to qualify for the discount.
You can also cap how many are sold, for example, set a cap of 50 and after the code is used 50 times it will automatically be made inactive. A great tool to use if you can only accept a certain number of bookings for a specific offering, for example, spa treatments, but also enables you to instil a sense of urgency when promoting your Black Friday offer (i.e. limited availability, only 50 available – when they’re gone, they’re gone!)
It’s more than just a day
As it has grown in popularity, Black Friday, has become more than just a day over the years, with many of the leading retailers teasing their offers weeks ahead of the day, and often launching their sale a week earlier, and extending them a week beyond Black Friday itself.
Having your offers prepared and sharing teasers ahead of Black Friday is vital in order to build up anticipation in your customers – post on social, and hint at your upcoming offers in your email campaigns. Set up a ‘coming soon’ page on your website and include a form to collect email addresses of anyone keen to be the first in the know – you could even offer a 24 hour sale preview to VIP sign ups.
Think carefully about when you will launch your Black Friday sale, and how long your offers will be available for. We would recommend having a clear end date and time to create urgency to buy now. Remember that if your sale goes well and you have capacity, you could always extend it for an extra 24 hours.
To find out how you can boost your bookings with Gift Voucher Brilliance, get in touch with our friendly team today.