The holiday season is here, and many small businesses have their sights on the biggest spending days of the year. Last year, during the week of Black Friday through the holiday weekend alone, retailers in the United States racked up $62 billion in sales.
Clearly, approaching Black Friday and Cyber Monday (BFCM) with the right strategy can make a meaningful difference in your Q4 performance. Take advantage of this shopping week to give back to your most loyal customers while earning dividends for your brand.
With proactive thought and planning, you can establish yourself as a regular stop on your target audience’s shopping plans. Below are some of the best ways to use incentives, discounts, and rewards ideas for loyal customers to keep them returning to your business during BFCM each year.
Offer exclusive sales ideas for loyal customers
Shoppers love exclusivity.
Holding sales specifically designed for previous customers will, by default, make your rewards program or customer list more valuable. Knowing that you offer opportunities for special discounts and deals also gives new customers a more convincing reason to sign up. Plus, marketing to audiences already familiar with your brand is more likely to generate revenue.
Email lists are a highly valuable marketing tool, as you know that those who have opted in already have an interest in your business. Work your email list to market these deals to existing customers. The return on investment (ROI) you get from a VIP sale is generally well worth the cost to market it. In fact, brand marketers at large agree that retaining customers costs less than acquiring them.
Customer loyalty-driven sales and discounts reconnects you with previous customers or prospects while setting the scene for customer loyalty in 2023 and beyond.
Reward BFCM shoppers with a mystery swag pack
Did you know that, among millennials, Gen X, and Baby Boomers combined, the average household contains 28-34 promotional items? Thoughtful promotional items are proven winners for generating and retaining customer leads.
A package filled with your company’s promotional items that’s only available to those who shop on Black Friday or Cyber Monday adds your brand to the mix, meaning you can establish a presence in customers’ households.
Quality items stick around for a while (sometimes years!), creating plenty of opportunities for brand impressions and exposure.
Make your product bundle an asset to potential customers by including items they can start using right away. A holiday-themed mug for tea, coffee, and hot chocolate will get used for the holidays and remain relevant well beyond the New Year.
Cold-weather apparel items, like beanies and hoodies, are appreciated throughout fall and winter. If you’re looking for timeless swag pack items, consider custom games, notebooks and stationery, or helpful tech tools.
Quality selections are key to ensuring the products you select last for a long time. Once you solidify quality, then comes the fun part. Add intrigue to your swag pack by making a show of surprising recipients with the contents. Market the offering as a limited-time deal and surprise so that anticipation builds with your recipients and they’re more likely to participate and even share their good experience with family members or friends.
Promote a percentage-based discount
Percentages are still one of the most straightforward and effective ways to offer discounts. Your loyal customers are more likely to purchase, because the same great products they come back for are simply offered for a deal. These same customers become your best advocates and brand ambassadors, as they’re likely to share the discount with their network or bring friends along, potentially earning you new customers.
Though Black Friday has historically been the biggest day for shopping, Cyber Monday continues to grow in popularity with millions of online shoppers. This means that it’s crucial to offer deals and discounts across your online store and digital presence as well, catching those customers that are less likely to buy in-person.
A smaller discount typically ranges from 5% to 10%, but many businesses offer larger discounts of 25% off or more to remain competitive. Consider the sales numbers you’re trying to achieve and the highest percentage of discounts you can offer to help you achieve those numbers.
Include a free gift offer
Let’s admit it. Everyone loves free stuff. Offering a free item that your loyal customers will appreciate can incentivize them to make a repeat purchase, sign up for further marketing with your brand, and more.
One way to use free gifts is to include an item with every purchase made on Black Friday or Cyber Monday, or to offer a BOGO deal. You could also leverage your email list by offering a freebie to all new sign-ups during BFCM week.
For online transactions, many companies include a free gift once a buyer’s checkout cart totals a minimum amount.
These are all low-risk situations that will leave a positive impression in the buyer’s mind. For example, it costs people nothing to sign up for your email list, but by doing so, they can earn a reward like a wireless charger, custom backpack, or engraved shot glass. Buyers are also more likely to get off the fence and make a purchase with your business if they know a free item will sweeten the deal.
Gamify your rewards
Gamifying your rewards is the practice of incorporating game-like elements and incentives to encourage participation with your brand. Doing this offers a level of involvement and excitement for customers that few other strategies can beat.
Games build engagement, offer a challenge or a thrill, and automatically make your brand more memorable to the prospective customer. When considering your online presence, work with developers to build a fun, simple game for your customers to play on your website.
The game can include opportunities for prizes and discounts for winning or as luck of the draw. Spinning wheels that stop on freebies and discounts are popular games to use at the end of online checkouts. These games also incentivize customers to sign up for email marketing updates, growing your client database.
Discount the items you want to highlight
Black Friday and Cyber Monday offer an excellent opportunity to highlight certain parts of your inventory. Using a well-timed discount or promotion can highlight items that may not be selling as well as you hoped. This is also a great time to roll out a new product, create bundles, or move more inventory with a 2-for-1 special.
Study your customer data to learn more about your audience and understand which items or products they’re more likely to respond to. Use this information to create a marketing and rewards strategy that gets results, and be sure to market it across all major in-person and digital channels.
Incentivize customers with free delivery
Finally, you can’t go wrong with free delivery as an incentive. Customers today have plenty of options for where they shop – especially on Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
Eliminating shipping costs, at least for these two days, automatically makes your buyer less likely to click out of your website and shop around. You can make shipping free across the board, or reserve it for buyers who hit a certain shopping cart total. Either way, customers will feel a sense of urgency, knowing that free shipping is only for a limited time.
Send your loyal customers a promo code to take advantage of the free shipping, or allow it to be automatically applied to their online cart. On the backend, work to make your shipping process as speedy as possible to plan for the additional orders and minimize delays.
Keep them coming back with a BFCM to remember
With the market saturation and fierce competition, the biggest shopping days of the year may seem overwhelming. But, the benefits far outweigh any potential risks. There’s as much competition as there is opportunity during the Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping holidays, and you can achieve your goals more speedily by reinvesting in your loyal customers.
The above incentives, rewards, and discount ideas for loyal customers will get you started. To make sure you’re equipped with the items to bring these ideas to life, check out our wide array of high-quality promotional products.