Black Friday and Cyber Monday have firmly established themselves in the e-commerce shopping calendar, with many retailers running on and offline promotions during this time, benefiting from the weekend sales bonanza.
Here to stay
It’s hard to believe now that Black Friday first arrived in the UK just five years ago when Amazon thought it would try its luck bringing the shopping sensation to a new market. And ‘Cyber Monday’ made its debut in 2005, when it was created by marketing companies to persuade people to shop online.
The results today are quite staggering – Amazon sold more than 7.4m items on Black Friday 2015 alone in 2015, up from 5.5m in the previous year, shifting 86 items per second and giving the online retailer its biggest sales day ever in the UK. Whilst Black Friday helped John Lewis record its biggest ever week of trading as sales via the department store’s website soared by 15.5%.
What does it mean for your venue?
Do Black Friday and Cyber Monday have a place in the luxury hotel gift voucher market? We work with over 330 of the most luxurious hotels and resorts, mainly located in the UK and Ireland and can reveal how it shaped up in 2015, with our pointers for planning and positioning 2016 offers that will enhance your brand, whilst enabling your venue to take advantage of the increased consumer spend.
How it shaped up in 2015
The graph below shows combined gift voucher sales in November and December, with clear spikes on these two dates: Friday 27 & Monday 30 November.
So whilst these two dates are not the busiest dates in your calendar year, what you do (or don’t do) will have an impact on sales.
And as you can see by sales following Black Friday and Cyber Monday, running a promotion on these dates doesn’t take away from sales for the rest of the festive season.
Around 20% of our clients created a gift voucher promotional code during this weekend to assist with the campaign and tracking. Some of our clients ran some very unique and innovative campaigns, generating sound results in 2015.
Planning for 2016
In today’s competitive market, luxury brands have to connect with customers in more creative ways than ever.
Our cloud based gift voucher management system makes it very easy to create a promotional code for gift experiences available at your venue for Black Friday and/or Cyber Monday and its flexibility enables you to create an offer on your terms, without devaluing your brand.
The choice is yours to:
- Select your preferred type of code i.e. a percentage or an amount off or buy X for the price of Y – perfect for corporate sales.
- Apply to just one voucher type you want to drive sales to, where you have a higher margin, or a specific category such as overnight stays, or indeed all your vouchers with just a few clicks.
- Apply the code(s) to gift vouchers only over a certain value and therefore encourage higher spend.
- Protect your margin by setting a minimum value that a buyer needs to spend before the code applies. The ‘Basket Min Value’ in the checkout is calculated by only adding up the value of vouchers in the basket that the promo code applies to. For example, if a code was created that gave the buyer 10% off all Spa vouchers, with a minimum spend set of £100, the buyer would need to have £100+ of Spa gift vouchers in their basket for the code to be valid.
- Create a very focused experience to the right customers, for example, by releasing the code to a segmented group(s) only, such as previous customers to reward, encourage loyalty and repeat business. Positioning your campaign will ensure you really are achieving a targeted audience, ripe for encouraging purchases.
- Set the gift voucher availability to a limited number; limiting supply makes a product, service or experience seem more valuable, creating a ‘scarcity’ factor, so people take action quickly.
- Make your offer time sensitive, creating intrigue and urgency.
These two big shopping days really kick off the Christmas buying season and present a HUGE opportunity for you in terms of your gift voucher sales, helping create brand awareness and more happy customers!