That’s it then. With Halloween out of the way, the Christmas shopping season has officially begun for another year. The busiest day of them all when it comes to panic shopping is Super Saturday – the last Saturday before Christmas. Whereas Black Friday kicks off the festive shopping season, few people are so prepared that they get everything they need. Super Saturday instead targets last-minute shoppers.
Here are some tips (including some from a range of industry experts) on how your company could capitalise on shoppers’ procrastination and panic…
If you only offer discounts on two days of the year, make them Black Friday and Super Saturday. Shoppers spent in droves during last year’s festive shopping season, and in many ways Super Saturday has now overtaken the more talked-about Black Friday in terms of importance. This is down to desperation; nobody wants to be the Scrooge who forgets to get a loved one a gift!
A record $42 billion was spent over Super Saturday weekend in 2014 in the US alone. To get in on the action, why not devise an exciting holiday deal for one day only? Coupon codes that expire at the end of the day are great for both online checkouts and print-out offers. If customers only receive the code when they share their email address, then you’re also bolstering your customer database too – ideal for future marketing.
“It’s important to create a sense of urgency; you’ve got to play on the fact people will be panicking,” says content marketing specialist Laura Varley. “’One-day-only’ deals are great for catching people’s eyes, and you can play on the panic by offering free next day delivery. This will reassure consumers that their Christmas presents are definitely going to arrive on time.”
In conjunction with your one-day Super Saturday offers, you should also be running campaigns in the build-up to it. It’s really a win-win situation; either the people you’re marketing to leave their Christmas shopping until Super Saturday, or they buy from you beforehand (without the benefit of a discount) as a result of you getting your name out there in advance.
SEO can take a while to show results, so unless you began work on your strategy several weeks and months prior, a great way to capitalise on Super Saturday is to boost the current performance of your site. “Identify top performing pages and make sure you have the basics right on those, such as high loading speeds, reviews and resources,” says SEO specialist Eli Zheleva. “This will help nurture the users and give them the confidence to buy from you.”
Paid search advertising, also known as pay-per-click (PPC), is arguably the most effective way to get specific products in front of targeted audiences, as SEO Specialist Adam Futer explains.
“When you look at the competition around this time, it’s more than likely that your competitors will be running PPC campaigns. If you lack the budget for all your products, try running smaller campaigns targeting the most popular products in the run-up to Super Saturday.”
Getting the most from your social media channels is also crucial. If people aren’t thinking about doing their Christmas shopping yet, they’re almost definitely still flicking through their social feeds on a daily basis.
“Fun and interactive content campaigns such as advent calendars are a great idea, helping generate excitement and keep your company in people’s minds when they’re doing their Christmas shopping,” says social media specialist Chloe Menage. “As it gets closer to Super Saturday, retailers should specifically target last minute shoppers by reminding them of opening times, delivery dates and so on.”
Create themed pages for your most popular items
Grouping your biggest sellers together on one landing page makes it incredibly simple for customers to buy. People can easily share these pages with fellow panic-shoppers, and there’s opportunity for upselling, too.
“I think themed landing pages should be used all of the time in PPC - not just for Super Saturday,” says Adam Futer. “Getting people landing on the most relevant page increases the chance of conversions. This goes back to user experience; get people on the most relevant landing page right away, don’t make them work to get to the page they are looking for.”
“For your best-selling products, you could include a countdown of how many you have left,” Laura Varley suggests. “This will panic consumers into buying there and then rather than waiting to think about it, and risking the product selling out!”
Make charitable donations
Most reputable businesses go out of their way to raise money for charity, and offering a percentage of your total Super Saturday revenue to a charitable cause is a great gesture for everyone involved; of course the biggest priority is those you’re raising money for. But it certainly doesn’t hurt your brand’s reputation either.It could even help secure conversions.
“I think people are definitely willing to spend more if part of their purchase is going to charity, as they feel less guilty about how much they’re spending!” says Laura Varley.
Encourage social sharing
“There’s a lot of hype around Super Saturday and so it’s essential to get on board with this early on,” says Chloe Menage. “Add to the excitement with offers, giveaways and competitions which can be communicated and run effectively through social media.”
The better the deal you’re offering, the more chance there is of people sharing it over their social channels. You could also encourage shoppers to share the deal with a specific themed hashtag, which allows you to own the conversation and monitor all activity.
“People love sharing a bargain they think they’ve found all on their own,” says Laura Varley. “You could also include a social sharing button at the checkout which tweets something along the lines of ‘I’ve just finished my Christmas shopping with [your company name]’s 20% off deal, have you!? #20supersaturday’, with a link to your site.”
Super Saturday sales 2015 are expected to be bigger than previous years (there was a $1billion increase between 2013 and 2014), so take these tips on board and help shoppers jingle all the way to your checkouts.
Jack Stanton is a brand journalist with Vertical Leap.