Preparations for Singles’ Day and co.

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Shopping events Preparations for Singles’ Day and co.

Published on 10.09.2019 by Stephan Lamprecht, journalist

Singles’ Day, Cyber Monday or Black Friday: nowadays, each year brings a whole host of major events for online retailers. Customers can look forward to bargains, while retailers can expect a jump in sales. Preparation is everything.

Every year, the Chinese online retail giant Alibaba reports new sales records on Singles’ Day (11/11) – a day on which single people (and others!) in China celebrate and shop. What’s more, the media buzz around this mega shopping event can also be harnessed by retailers from Switzerland. Or if not Singles’ Day, then Black Friday (the first Friday after Thanksgiving). These events are slowly making a name for themselves amongst consumers as ideal times to snap up bargains.

Optimize shop systems and processes

If you want to make use of these significant events in your marketing, you need to have a solid basis on which to work. Customers will turn their back on a retailer (perhaps forever) if their shop is inaccessible or responds too slowly. This is why load testing is crucial, as it allows you to check whether your technical infrastructure is able to withstand the onslaught. It is worth getting in touch with your access provider to find out whether you have the option of obtaining additional resources at short notice.

A check of the technical basis also encompasses all other back-end processes. The question is whether quick picking and delivery are still guaranteed if the number of orders doubles or increases by even more.

Check deliverability

Nothing is more embarrassing or annoying than running out of stock, especially on a discount day. The ability to secure higher numbers of units from suppliers on time is only one side of the coin. Your inventory management system and connectors to marketplaces and online shops need to monitor product stock levels as closely to real time as possible. Only by doing so can you guarantee deliverability and that items can be deactivated promptly.

Align marketing

Calculate and create offers and promotions around the event in good time. Set up e-mail campaigns for existing customers and send discount codes. If using price comparison engines and placing ads on search engines, start preparing the campaigns early. Consumer interest in Black Friday and Singles’ Day starts around four weeks in advance. The first media reports appear during this period, followed by mounting interest in the following weeks.

You may want to display information on the special offers in the shop around a week before the actual event. Pay particular attention to click rates in the shop during this time to find out whether the strategy you have devised actually works.

It is important to keep promotions as simple as possible. You are not the only provider advertising discounts and bargains. Offer a direct route to the special offer without complex discounts and bundles.

The sales figures in the first few days prior to the event provide initial insight into which products will be especially in demand. Evaluate the figures and set aside the corresponding volumes.

As always in life: preparation is everything, including on Singles’ Day.

Stephan Lamprecht, journalist

Stephan Lamprecht has been following e-commerce developments in Germany, Austria and Switzerland for two decades as a journalist and consultant.

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