Black Friday shopping trends and insights for 2023
It’s that time of year again – retailers are gearing up for the holiday shopping rush as Black Friday quickly approaches, followed by more discount shopping days like Cyber Monday and Cyber Week.
Emerging trends and customer expectations are going to shape how retailers approach the hectic shopping season. Getting a strong start to Black Friday and ensuring communication and operations run smoothly are going to be essential for brands to see success throughout the rest of the holiday season.
Black Friday trends and how brands can prepare
Physical and digital retail interactions are overlapping
Experts at McKinsey say that “we are entering the world of ‘phygital‘…where there is not a physical world or digital world in retail, but rather a completely connected one.”
Creating connected experiences in retail means customers can stay in touch with their favorite brands from anywhere on the right channel, at the right time, and with the right message. Going “phygital” for Black Friday, and beyond, means blurring the lines between digital and physical store experiences, as customers are making the return to brick-and-mortar while still favoring the benefits they’ve grown accustomed to with digital shopping.
of people start shopping process online
of shoppers use mobile device to review products before talking to a representative
prefer making purchases in-store
Some popular examples of phygital experiences include:
- Buy online and pick-up in store
- Curbside pickup
- Browse online, reserve items to try on in store
- Buy online and return in store
54% of consumers say receiving impersonal messages annoys them
Infobip research found that 54% of consumers say receiving impersonal messages annoys them and 47% ignore impersonalized messages altogether.
As a result, retailers are investing in delivering personalized recommendations for products based on a user’s shopping or browsing history. To craft a personalized message, retailers need a clear picture of their audience so they can segment, create, and send tailored messages to customers based on the timing, channel, and content that’s relevant to them.
Particularly during the Black Friday to Cyber Monday rush, consumers are short on time and more likely to interact with brands that understand their preferences and needs. Plus, if you can nail the communication at this crucial time in the customer journey, they’re more likely to turn into repeat, loyal customers that will engage with your brand year-round.
Customers look for omnichannel communication on Black Friday
The way customers interact with brands has changed dramatically over the last few years, and some retailers are still catching up to adapting solutions to meet their customers’ expectations.
- Overall interactions are expected to increase by 55% compared to an average Friday in November
- SMS interactions are expected to increase by 54%
- MMS is expected to see a 128% increase in North America
- WhatsApp is predicted to increase by 15%
- Viber interactions are predicted to increase by 52%
PwC found that the number of companies investing in the omnichannel experience has jumped from 20% to more than 80%, and that “shoppers avoid retailers who are ill-equipped to deliver a seamless brand experience online, in-store and across multichannel media, both consistently and continuously.”
You put a lot of time into crafting a Black Friday campaign. And each year, the pressure to achieve results intensifies. If you’re not reaching and engaging customers with an omnichannel solution that includes various channels, you’re likely missing an opportunity to make gains during the holiday shopping season.
Early shopping through mobile messaging
Black Friday is expected to be as busy as ever. Retailers should be prepared for shoppers to start looking for deals earlier in the month. Consumers want to know what deals will be available, if there are any special promotions pre-Black Friday and will keep an eye on their favorite products.
Mobile messaging is particularly useful for targeting consumers who know what they’re looking for, are on the hunt for a bargain in advance of Black Friday or are simply raving fans of your brand. SMS is a favorite channel because of its reliable delivery and the fact that it is available on almost every mobile phone worldwide.
Black Friday SMS templates
If you are looking for inspiration, here are some sample SMS messages that you can use in your own Black Friday SMS campaigns.
Remember though – the key to standing out in recipients’ inboxes is much more than catchy copy. People are far more likely to convert if messages are personalized and offer something that they are genuinely interested in.
Here are some examples that include personalization, reward loyalty and build anticipation:
Hi [Name]. Have you still got your eye on [product]? It’s now on sale! Visit our site and enter coupon code [code] on checkout to get a further 5% discount. (156 chars)
Hi [Name]. Now is the time to stock up on your favorite products before the holiday season starts! Prices have never been lower. Shop now and save! (149 chars)
Dear [Name]. As a valued customer we are offering you FIRST ACCESS to our Black Friday sale. This link will be live at 6pm EST on Thursday! (139 chars)
We reserve our best deals for LOYAL CUSTOMERS! Log into your account to access exclusive deals and discounts curated just for you! (131 chars)
Our Black Friday Sale starts in [x] days and [x] hours. Are you ready to snag a bargain? Tap here for the live count down! (124 chars)
Just 3 more days until our HUGE Black Friday sale! PRO TIP – reserve products by adding them to your basket and they will be automatically discounted! Act now! (159 chars)
Customer experiences are becoming conversational
It should go without saying by now that consumers expect a great shopping experience- online or in-store. Creating conversational experiences for your retail customers throughout their journey can help you get there.
Customers expect seamless communication and personalization when interacting with brands. Conversational experiences help you provide proactive service, offer relevant recommendations, cross-sell and up sell as well as complete checkout all in a single conversation.
of UK customers say they would purchase more from brands they had a good experience with
of UK customers say they would no longer purchase from brands they had a negative experience with
To find out more about how to provide a stellar conversational journey for customers, check out our blog:
Get a head start on Black Friday
One thing’s for sure – personalized, conversational experiences are here to stay, no matter what the season is. Customers expect smooth and uninterrupted experiences with retail brands, even in the most hectic season of the year.
Meet their expectations with the right automation and conversational tools from a reliable communications platform. Infobip is the only omnichannel communications solution you need to deliver all this and more to ensure a great customer experience – not just during the peak shopping season but throughout their entire journey with your brand
Turn Black Friday shoppers into loyal customers
Read more about making the most of the holiday shopping season.