It’s that time of year again: Thanksgiving – a time when families gather around the table for turkey and all the fixings, to argue over politics, and of course, land some killer online deals.
Whether you’re a high-end antique dealer selling on Chairish or 1stdibs, a custom woodworker with your own Etsy shop, or a small-time seller on eBay, Thanksgiving and the four days following can equal big profits for those willing to get creative with their pricing. More than ever, shoppers are comfortable buying large items online, and, as recent numbers show, they’re even more comfortable buying discounted items online.
Here, we take a look at four of the biggest online shopping days of the year, along with some practical advice for getting in on the action (without sacrificing your margins).
Thanksgiving Day (November 28)
Why wait until Friday to dole out the deals? In 2018, Thanksgiving officially became the third largest online shopping day of the year, with a record $3.7 billion in sales. This 28 percent year-over-year growth represents a trend that online retailers should consider when deciding which day to start dishing out discounted pricing.
In addition to Thanksgiving solidifying its place as a top shopping day, it’s also a test-run holiday for consumers. Many potential buyers may be looking at their crowded dining room table and realizing they’ll need additional chairs, sofas, or stools for when December’s festivities roll around. As a home decor dealer, this introduces a tremendous opportunity to meet these consumer needs.
Black Friday (November 29)
There’s no surprise that the day after Thanksgiving continues to dominate holiday sales. According to Adobe Analytics, online profits for Black Friday reached $6.2 billion in 2018, up 23.6 percent from the previous year.
Pro Tip: For sellers with an online marketplace, be sure to consider your customer’s mobile experience. Last year’s Black Friday saw shoppers purchasing big-ticket items like furniture and appliances from their mobile devices, with 33.5 percent of total e-commerce sales coming from smartphones.
Small Business Saturday (November 30)
As a boutique retailer, Small Business Saturday could be your day to shine. More and more, consumers are looking for one-of-a-kind items and opting to spend their money with small retailers.
According to a survey from Funding Circle, 76 percent of U.S. Amazon Prime members said they’re willing to go out of their way (and pay more) for a holiday purchase at a small local business, versus purchasing from Amazon.
This trend definitely showed in the numbers for last year’s Small Business Saturday, with online sales reaching a record $3.02 billion, up 25.5 percent from 2017.
Cyber Monday (December 2)
With over $7.9 billion in revenue last year, Cyber Monday was the biggest online shopping day in history. Yes, history.
How to Win Big This Thanksgiving
So what’s the best way to entice buyers without cutting into your margins this Thanksgiving season? The most obvious answer is to offer a discount on your products, but that isn’t always feasible for boutique sellers, nor is it the best option.
The real answer could be hiding in your shipping costs. Offering free shipping to your customers, either by folding the cost of shipping into the price of your product, covering the entire cost of shipping, or by some combination of the two, can make all the difference in your customers feeling like they’re getting a good deal this holiday season.
In addition to offering free shipping, there are other ways to sweeten a deal without cutting into your profits. Offering discounts on bundled items or enticing buyers with something free at checkout (perhaps a slipcover for that new couch?) is another great way to make customers feel like they’ve found a deal they can’t pass up.
Lastly, don’t forget to inform your customers about upcoming sales. Now’s the time to start teasing discounted prices through your company’s social media channels, email, or even through good old advertising in your brick-and-mortar shop.
Once you’ve made it through this busy shopping season, the next step is figuring out how you’ll ship your products to your customers. That’s where uShip In-Home Delivery comes in. Our fully-managed network of furniture shipping solutions gives you powerful pricing tools, integrated checkout options, and, of course, access to thousands of customer-rated transporters across the country.
Schedule a demo today to see how partnering with uShip gives your customers the confidence to purchase this holiday season.