Black Friday is the bellwether moment of the holiday season. If you get it wrong with customers during this time of year, you will likely struggle to keep them coming back, or worse yet, you won’t gain any new ones throughout the rest of the holiday season.
So, we’re here to help you prepare for this infamous cyber holiday and the rest of the season. There’s no need to panic, there’s still time to get ready. So, let’s jump into it!
Hold a Company-Wide Team Meeting Prior to Black Friday
Once you do have a plan, share it with your employees by holding a meeting to discuss it a few weeks prior to Black Friday. By holding a company-wide meeting, you’re showing your company leadership and employees how important the next few months are to the success of your company.
In your meeting, be sure to set expectations. Discuss how important it is to remain calm when things go awry, especially when it comes to speaking with or handling customer complaints. Treat fellow employees with respect, no matter how challenging a situation is.
Finally, a great way to get employees excited about the season it to offer a cash incentive to those employees who demonstrate the best performance within each department. Have each team vote on who they think deserves the award and incorporate any customer feedback received as well.
Hold a Fire Drill for Each Department and Review with Each Team
Each functional customer-facing team, such as sales, customer service and support, should come up with a few challenging scenarios and role play them to show best practices for handling such situations.
Remind everyone that the holidays can be tense for everyone, including your employees and customers, when things don’t go as planned. Employees should do their best to help customers feel like their issue is resolved. Don’t panic! When your company makes a mistake, own it, apologize and use it as a teaching moment for each team.
Take a Look at Your Performance and Sales Last Year
One of the best ways to prepare for the coming onslaught of customer activity and challenges is to dig into your analytics and look at demand during the same period last year. Review your sales, shipments and KPIs, and you can use those as a benchmark for how prepared you need to be this year.
If you gave customers a good experience last year, you can likely expect sales numbers and shipments to increase as online sales continue to grow year over year overall within the industry as a whole.
Evaluate Staffing Needs and Have Help Ready and On Deck
After you’re reviewed how you handled staffing and an increase in demand last year, you can be prepared by interviewing and having candidates ready to go when the moment arrives. Have your training manuals ready to go when you bring temporary hires on board, and you are most of the way there.
Ask team leaders each week of the holiday season how they’re handling the demand and request that they communicate any issues, whether it’s process or people, as soon as possible.
Have Several Deals and Email Campaigns Ready to Go
Because of the large number of new customers you’re likely to acquire during this time of year, be sure to gather email addresses. You can combine these with what’s already existing in your database, segment by behavior, and send targeted deals specific to their needs or related to prior purchases.
This is the time of year when you’ll see record numbers of new customers. So, treat each one like gold and you’ll be able to keep them coming back again and again after the holiday season. Plus, you’ll have more subscribers to work with the following year.
If you’d like to learn how you can use Systum to handle the holiday season like a pro, fill out the form below. We’ll be happy to show you how Systum can help you brand, market and sell, all within our platform.