Friday, June 14, 2024

2024 small business guide to online shopping days: Click Frenzy, Black Friday and more

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When are the online sales days in 2024?

If you haven’t already planned your sales campaigns for 2024 – or want to keep an eye on events for upcoming years – here are some online shopping sale days to mark on your calendar.

Click Frenzy: various dates from March to November

Born in Australia in 2012 as a response to Cyber Monday, the Click Frenzy website acts as a catalogue of deals from other businesses, big and small.

The main online shopping event is in early November, but there are also several other smaller Click Frenzy sales throughout the year. Here are this year’s dates.

  • Click Frenzy Travel — 19 March to 23 March 2024
  • Click Frenzy Mayhem — 11 May to 14 May 2024
  • Click Frenzy Travel — 23 August to 27 August 2024
  • Click Frenzy: The Main Event — 11 November to 15 November 2024.

Singles’ Day – 11 November 2024

Falling on 11 November each year, Singles’ Day is an unofficial celebration of single people in China.

Singles’ Day is the largest retail shopping day in the world, and Australian brands and products have become some of the most sought-after for Chinese consumers shopping internationally. In 2023, Singles Day finished with $156 billion in estimated sales.

Singles’ Day deals are most often sold through international marketplaces like Alibaba, but that doesn’t mean you can’t join hundreds of other Aussie brands and offer your own deals in-store and online to capitalise on the hype.

Black Friday – 29 November 2024

Black Friday is the biggest shopping day of the year in the United States and one of the most popular worldwide. Every year, the day after Thanksgiving, stores throw their doors open to swarms of camped-out shoppers on the hunt for a bargain.

The day is a favourite pastime for many US consumers, but Australians aren’t ones to miss out on an event, so shoppers and retailers have quickly taken to Black Friday since it first graced our shores 10 years ago.

Black Friday isn’t officially until Friday 29 November 2024, but the sales seem to start earlier every year as competition between businesses grows, and consumers take advantage of discounts throughout November to get their Christmas shopping done early. So, if you’re not on board with the Black Friday weekend already, it might be the year to start.

Check out what other retailers have planned for Black Friday 2024.

Small Business Saturday – 30 November 2024

Wedged between Black Friday and Cyber Monday is Small Business Saturday. The latest addition to the Black Friday weekend, the day is a reminder to shoppers to keep it local and visit smaller brick-and-mortar stores.

The past few years have fortified the ‘shop local’ movement. Even post-COVID, shopping locally remains an important part of Australian shopping habits. Power Retail’s survey in 2022 saw 54% of people shop to support local businesses. This means there’s no better way to spread the word about your business than Small Business Saturday on 30 November 2024.

Cyber Monday – 2 December 2024

Cyber Monday falls on the Monday after Black Friday. This year Cyber Monday will be on 2 December 2024.

Cyber Monday works especially well for consumers who are looking for a bargain but aren’t drawn to the crowds or urgency of Black Friday. It’s also a great opportunity to catch more hesitant customers who might want to research different products and price-match before committing to a purchase.

Many retailers will promote different deals over the sales weekend to try to catch repeat business. You can get an idea of what other retailers have planned for Cyber Monday 2024 on Finder.

Boxing Day – 26 December 2024

You probably don’t have to be reminded about Boxing Day sales, which start the day after Christmas on 26 December. While Black Friday has certainly given Boxing Day a run for its money in recent years, Boxing Day isn’t going anywhere.

If you’re not set up for eCommerce, now might be the time to look into it. The increase in international brands in Australia, and the ease and convenience of online shopping, have pushed Boxing Day sales more online each year.

Plus, if your customer is someone who’d prefer to shop while watching the test cricket at home, they’ll probably thank you for it.

You can get a sneak peek of other retailers’ Boxing Day 2024 deals on Finder.

Tips to improve your online sales

Online shopping sale days have become more common with a number of major events throughout the year.

Events like Click Frenzy, Black Friday and Cyber Monday are becoming more popular among businesses for boosting sales.

Here are some tips to help your small business make the most of online sale events throughout the year.

1. Optimise your online store

Online shoppers have come to expect easy and smooth transactions when buying online. Make your online store the best it can be by optimising your site to convert visitors into customers and make sure it has the bandwidth to handle any increase in traffic on sale days.

Some eCommerce platforms, such as Shopify, allow you to email visitors who abandon their shopping carts on your website. This can give you one last chance to remind customers that their items are still waiting and even offer a coupon.

2. Embrace click and collect

Adding a click-and-collect option to your online store gives customers the convenience of online shopping without the shipping time and cost.

Research by Australia Post shows click and collect services for online shopping have grown by 13.6% in 2022. Customers are choosing click and collect because it is faster and cheaper than shipping.

The key to click and collect is to have accurate stock levels that update in real-time and processes that allow you or your employees to reserve items as soon as an order comes in.

3. Adapt to the sale day and target market

Sale days can be a great opportunity to move old or out of season stock.

Think about the type of consumers you might get for each sale day and what they might be shopping for.

If you had an online store last year, check your analytics for trends on what your customers looked for and bought.

Consider adding a ‘gift ideas’ section to your website and creating social media posts or blog articles to encourage customers to browse for items.

Bundle pricing, gift packs, vouchers or offering gift wrapping can also make shopping easier. Keep in mind how long it will take to package and deliver products during busy periods like EOFY sales, Boxing Day or Christmas.

4. Focus on what your business can offer customers

As a small business, consider promotions that are less likely to damage your profit margin, such as:

  • an extended returns policy
  • free or discounted shipping over a certain amount
  • quantity discounts
  • gift wrapping and cards
  • gift with purchase.

Offering pick-up or fast local delivery will draw Christmas shoppers who can’t afford shipping delays.

If offering a gift with a purchase online, make sure it’s something that will be cheap enough to post and factor the cost into your margins.

5. Use your small scale to your advantage

Capitalise on what customers can get from your business that they can’t from big stores or brands. Use the fact that you are local, have relationships with many of your customers and can offer an in-person and personalised shopping experience to your advantage.

Some of your customers may be intimidated by crowds and might not like busy in-store sale days. Your small sized store and fast delivery of products can appeal to these people.

A carefully wrapped package and personalised note in online orders can also go a long way to create a connection with customers you may never see face-to-face. Read more about the power of packaging and unboxing in this article by Australia Post.

6. Promote on social media and in newsletters

Some consumers start planning before the sale events start. Promote your sales in advance on social media and get your followers to spread the word with these tips:

experiment with one of the big sale days and start with a small-budget social media campaign

offer exclusives to social media followers and newsletter subscribers

hold competitions for followers who tag friends in your posts or repost your promotion posts to spread the word

widen your net with #BlackFridaySales #BlackFriday2024 and other related hashtags in your posts

use banner and profile images on your social media channels and Google My Business listing to promote your sales day campaigns.

7. Make it an exciting event

Your small business may not have the capacity to do what the big stores do, but there are ways to keep your customers engaged.

Here are some small ways to take advantage:

  • organise different promotions for different days (or times) of the Black Friday to Cyber Monday weekend
  • ask customers to post on social media and tag you in exchange for a chance to win
  • reward your social media followers or newsletter subscribers with VIP discounts or early bird deals
  • set a limit on a particular deal at the beginning of the day to get customers to act quickly.

8. Reach a wider audience with an online marketplace

There are pros and cons to small businesses selling products through online marketplaces like Amazon, eBay, Catch, Ozsale or even Facebook Marketplace. On one hand, these platforms provide a large audience for you to tap into. For big sale days, marketplaces are often the most efficient ways for customers to do their shopping. Getting your products out in the market can also be faster this way if you’re starting from scratch.

On the other hand, you give up a portion of your profits to the marketplace provider and lose some of your brand identity to the bigger umbrella brand. Instead of interacting with you, customers interact with the marketplace, so you lose some control over the customer experience that many small businesses find essential to building connection and brand loyalty.

Ultimately, the decision to use a marketplace will depend on your business plan and the goals you’ve set for your business.

When selling on an online marketplace make sure you:

  • add as much detail as possible to your listing, including important keywords, tags and filters
  • consider using the marketplace’s advertising options to bump your products to the top
  • add different shipping options and make your pick-and-pack as efficient as possible.

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