The end of the year holidays are fast approaching and with them the headache for customers to find the perfect gift for their loved ones and for merchants the way to to stand out from the competition.

At the same time, there was a flurry of promotions and other advantageous offers, notably with the Black Friday period. This year, this special promotion day will be on November 22, 2022.

Nevertheless, many are the brands who prepare months in advance to offer the best experience to their most loyal customers and offer a few weeks before, the first discounts for its most loyal customers.

Black Friday comes straight from the United States, it made its appeared in the early 1950s, referring to the in reference to the crowded streets on the Friday after Thanksgiving. Another story says that merchants used black ink to keep track of their sales which exploded on that day. It was also usually the time when workers took a day off to do their Christmas shopping.

France has not escaped this. In 2014, the first Black Friday campaigns crossed the Atlantic. Black Friday France is one of the biggest e-commerce events of the year. The turnover of e-commerce in France reached 25 billion euros on the end of the year celebrations in 2020. This figure has been constantly increasing for several years.

For this pivotal time, Karmen has created the ultimate holiday guide for e-merchants.

Holiday essentials for e-retailers

  • Black Friday can account for 25% to 50% of e-tailers' sales.
  • It is therefore essential to be well prepared for this exceptional period, known as the "golden quarter", particularly in terms of cash flow.
  • The RBF makes it possible to face a significant increase in sales and the cash flow needs that this implies for your company, while remaining in control. 

Analyze your performance and current situation to prepare for the holidays

Essential moment to take stock for e-merchants

This period, also called the "golden quarter" between Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Christmas and New Year's Day, is crucial for e-tailers. It can represent between 25 and 50% of their sales. It is therefore important to prepare well in advance and to anticipate this frantic phase.

To prepare for this period, we advise you to take stock of the financial, economic and operational situation of your company. The analysis of your sales performance and your stocks will allow you to anticipate the "golden quarter".

2 key points to boost your e-commerce site for the holidays

If you have planned your strategy well, your site's traffic should increase before and during this period. To do this, you need to make sure that you do two key things: 

  1. That your site can accommodate more visitors than usual
  2. That you have the proper tracking and analysis tools to gather as much information as possible

How to optimize your e-commerce site for the holidays?

Make sure your site is attractive to your customer. Even before they have viewed one of your products, they may leave or stay on your site depending on their user experience. Here are a few tips to turn your customer from a visitor to a buyer in a matter of seconds.

A good e-commerce site must support a large number of visitors

To do this, don't hesitate to consult your web host to check that your site can accommodate high traffic . Also test your loading speed with sites like WebPage test, Google PageSpeed Insights or Pingdom.

You should know that the number of visitors decreases if the loading time exceeds 4 seconds and that the conversion rate decreases by 7% for each additional second in the loading of a page. Thus, a speed of 100 to 200 ms is considered excellent.

The customer journey must be fluid

A good customer journey significantly increases the conversion rate. From the simple visit to the shopping cart, there is only one click.

Opt for clear product pages, transparent delivery times and costs and a simplified checkout process. 

Keep track of your e-commerce site's performance

The period will generate a particular traffic that is interesting to analyze for you. Understanding your new customers can help you convert them into regular customers and acquire new ones.

It is therefore essential to track the performance of your e-commerce site. For this, you can use sites like Facebook Pixel or Google Tag Manager and Google Analytics. They will allow you to put in perspective the performance of your e-commerce and to follow the customer interactions. 

Develop a clear marketing strategy for the holiday season

Once your site is ready to receive a lot of traffic, think about setting up your e-commerce site. Like a physical store, your customer wants to have a clear view of current promotions and sales conditions.

For this, you can focus your strategy on three points, the planning of your email marketing campaigns, the creation of gift guides and the planning of commercial animations. 

Plan email marketing campaigns 

Email marketing campaigns will allow you to attract but also to convert a large number of visitors on your e-commerce site. 

By clearly announcing your holiday promotion dates, offers and customer benefits, you simplify the customer experience. 

However, be careful not to flood your potential buyers' mailboxes too much and always make sure to have the "unsubscribe" mention at the end of your email marketing campaigns. 

Create gift guides 

On the day of the event, you won't have time to prepare your promotional offers on your e-commerce site. So prepare all your offers for the end of the year celebrations beforehand and share them with your subscribers in order to create envy among them. 

In order to limit the headache of the Christmas gift list, be creative and imagine gift guides according to family ties, friends or hobbies of everyone. This will facilitate the customer experience of your visitors. 

Plan commercial animations

To boost your sales, plan your commercial animations for the end of the year.

Not all events of the year are necessarily interesting for your business. Then, punctuate your calendar with these highlights to develop the link with the customers of your e-commerce site to retain them.

Preparing your cash flow for the holidays

How about the Black Friday loan?

As you can see, being well prepared is essential to face the Black Friday wave. One of the keys to being well prepared is having a solid cash flow plan. In order to meet all the demands, you may need financing.

For this, no problem, you can call upon a RBF(Revenue based financing) loan.

What is RBF? It isan innovative non-dilutive financing solution. RBF transforms your future revenues into immediate cash flow. This allows you to anticipate a significant increase in sales. 

Why use Karmen?

At Karmen, RBF is based on three main principles

  • Non-dilution: you remain in control of your company. There is no equity investment in your company and no personal guarantee. 
  • Transparency: no hidden fees. You pay back the loan according to your future income and according to the schedule fixed beforehand. 
  • Speed: in less than 48 hours we evaluate your eligibility and you can receive a proposal for an RBF loan from one of our advisors. 

Lower your prices for the holidays

On average, discounts of 60% are applied to travel, 50% to office supplies, 47% to electronics, 32% to fashion and apparel and 31% to gifts.

There are also classic promotional offers such as : 

  • 3 for the price of 2 
  • Spend 100 € and get 20 € etc
  • Free shipping on orders over a certain amount 
  • Gift and gift wrapping offered 
  • Bundles 
  • Limited editions
  • Exclusive sales for members only 

Lowering your prices will allow you to be competitive with your competitors' offeringsand sell on a larger volume. 

Don't hesitate to offer cross-merchandise (selling additional accessories to the parent product) to boost your sales! 

Improve the customer experience for the holidays

Think mobile for e-commerce sites

Online sales from cell phones are becoming more and more important in today's consumption techniques.

In 2019, +453% of transactions were completed, 46% of which were from mobile. So think about optimizing your mobile experience. Commerce from mobile allows for many benefits including: 

  • Integrated exclusivities: integrate exclusive offers to your customers via their application
  • Quick purchases: social networks like Instagram or Facebook, have now integrated the buy button directly into their application. This allows customers to consume without leaving their application. Optimize this sales channel to exponentially increase your sales.
  • A more direct communication: thanks to push notifications, your customers receive directly the promotional offers and the latest news of your e-shop. Knowing that French people spend more than 2h30 on their mobile, you are sure to reach your target at any moment. 
  • A great potential for growth: sales on cell phones (smartphones and tablets) have multiplied by 8 in seven years according to lsa-conso. 

So, opt for tools to optimize your mobile experience. The Google optimization test allows you to evaluate your adaptability. Don't forget to create a mobile responsive version of your site and offer several secure mobile payment options.

Relaxing its return policy 

In addition to payment facilities, don't forget tomake your return policy more flexible. This is a key criterion for consumers today, especially during promotions. Your policy should be clear and simple so as not to scare the buyer away from the sale.

To increase your conversion rate, you can strategize a commercial return policy. To do this, lengthen your return time. Today it is 30 days on average but some sites offer up to 90 days!

You can also automate your refunds. This will increase the satisfaction of your buyers who will feel listened to and understood and your sales: most consumers replace their purchase immediately. Finally, propose a follow-up of the return and refunds. This is very reassuring for your customers. For even more conversion: think about free returns!

Preparing for the 2023 opening

Thinking about the end of the year is the first step in your optimization strategy. The second is the opening of 2023, the launch of the new year, a significant step!

Preparing for 2023 means making sure your cash flow is stable enough to start the year off right and receive all the challenges it throws at you. Karmen has you covered with instant non-dilutive financing!

Indeed, Karmen allows digital companies to finance their growth in a non-dilutive way and very quickly.

At Karmen, the investor has no direct ownership in the business and does not require fixed payments. Payments will be based on the recurring revenue of the business. Karmen uses a tool to anticipate the future revenues of a company.

In concrete terms, if your income decreases during a month, the royalties to Karmen will be reduced proportionally . Conversely, if the company's revenues increase drastically during a month, the royalties will increase simultaneously.

Karmen offers an alternative to fundraising that allows more companies to finance themselves.

Indeed, Karmen does not have any particular requirement on a business sector or an ultra-tech product as a venture capital fund may have.

Getting a quick loan is the essence of Karmen's offer, as a business can receive cash in less than 48 hours. 

This period is crucial for the sales of your online store! You must not skimp on your efforts and prepare your sales strategy in advance. Your return on investment will be even greater! If you still have any doubts or questions, don't hesitate to contact one of our consultants Karmen to guide you.