Knowledge base

How To Use Flash Sales And Scarcity To Drive Sales

black friday sale

Black Friday sales season is almost upon us, and for retailers who are yet to prepare, there’s no better time than now.

One major element of a typical Black Friday sale is a sense of urgency, and there are several ways to create this sense in your online store. But first, why should one create a sense of urgency?

Traditional, the Black Friday sale happens the day after Thanksgiving and for many stores, it is a great way to clear their stocks before the holiday season inventory comes in. For customers, this meant deep discounts on products they’ve always wanted - a win-win situation for all parties involved.

Over time, the Black Friday sales trend has in itself changed quite significantly. Today, we don’t have to wait for an annual holiday to be able to buy products at a great discount. Instead, we have sales happening multiple times throughout the year. What sticks, however, is the psychology behind supply scarcity which is the basis of every good sale. When we buy a product that is limited in stock and comes at a discount, we walk away from the transaction satisfied.

With this being such a crucial element of sales on Black Friday, here are our top tips for selling more this year using the psychology of scarcity.

  1. Offering Real Discounts: The most basic of sales strategies is also the most effective. Actually slashing prices and displaying the reduced price prominently is a great way to capture consumer’s attention. Indeed, one must actually slash the prices and not just offer discounts on inflated numbers. This ensures consumer trust even after the sale period is over.
  1. Limited-Time Deals: First pioneered by Amazon, limited-time deals are an excellent way to get people to make those impulsive purchases. When we have to make decisions in a limited time, we often use our instinct to pick the right choice. A timed deal that offers a deep discount, but only for an hour or so, allows people to use the part of their brain that pushes them to make a purchase.

At Arka, packaging material needs to go into production at a certain time each day. As a result, we prominently display time cut-offs during the sale period to ensure that:

-We can go into production at a fixed time each day, and

-We create a sense of urgency with the use of a cutoff window.

  1. Using Countdowns Effectively: Our research shows that timers for sales work well, but only within the 72-hour window. In other words, sending timer emails when there are more than three days left to go for the sale actually decreases the chance of converting customers. However, timers for 72 hours and less are extremely effective.

You can make the process even more effective by prominently displaying a timer countdown on your website- there are a ton of Shopify apps that can help you achieve this. Also, send scheduled email campaigns that count down as well.

  1. No Better Time To Negotiate Prices: Contrary to what most people believe, sales seasons are actually periods of increased sales. There’s no better time than now to talk to your vendors and encourage them to offer a discount on their products. After all, inventory churn is important for everyone including your vendors.

Negotiate better prices for products well in advance and offer to buy a certain minimum number if the price is lucrative.

  1. Use Burst Marketing: A sales season is the best time to increase your marketing spend and go all out. If you host your website on Shopify as we do, you will gain access to partner activities that can help you gain more traction. We can say, from experience, that it is worth investing in these initiatives.

There’s also no better time than now to get your email lists in order. Sift through your inactive customer database and send them targeted emails plus deep discount emails to encourage a purchase. Likewise, offer early deals to your active database so they feel part of the sales picture.

  1. Use Your Business’ Lifecycle Effectively: It is a known fact that medical stores do better business during the monsoon season, and stationery stores during the start of a semester. With that in mind, use your business’ cycle to make the most of your sale.

For us at Arka, a few weeks before the Black Friday sale is actually the golden period because this is when most vendors need to place their packaging orders. We use this period, instead of the actual Black Friday sale, to sell more. However, we also host a sale during that period to sell to vendors looking for good deals during the holiday season.

The Black Friday sale period is the perfect opportunity to sell more because the demand is already high. Driving urgency with your deals and offers can help you sell more organically. By combining a good marketing strategy with sound vendor negotiations, you will be poised to offer the best deals on most products, and this sees a significant bump in your sales. Happy selling!

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