The biggest shopping event of the year is almost upon us. BFCM (Black Friday, Cyber Monday) represents a four-day fest of the internet’s biggest deals and is a massive opportunity for app marketers to capture customer attention.

Mobile continues to prove itself as a critical channel for engaging holiday shoppers. Last year, shoppers spent $8.9 billion online during Black Friday, of which 43% of sales came from mobile devices.

But how do you stand out from the crowd during the busiest event of the year when every brand competes simultaneously for users’ attention?

Here we’ve compiled five best practices for grabbing shoppers’ attention with push notifications this Black Friday.

Choose the Right Power Words

If your messaging doesn’t stand out from your competitors and other brands vying for your users’ attention, your pushes can easily become lost in the overall Black Friday bombardment.

The best-performing keywords during Black Friday sales are:

  • Deals
  • Last chance
  • X% off
  • Save

Keep your messaging simple. Users receive a multitude of communications between Black Friday and Cyber Monday, so you only have a few seconds to grab your user’s attention and convince them to take action.

A/B test campaigns to refine your messaging and identify the keywords resonating with your target audience.

Use GIFs and Emojis

Adding emojis and GIFs to your messaging grabs users’ attention and contributes to the tone and emotion of your brand. Used daily by smartphone users among their friends and family, GIFs and emojis help build a connection with your customers and lead to higher engagement. 

Holiday-themed emojis see an average 3X improvement in open rates. A/B test the same message with and without emojis to understand the real value they add to your unique audience. And test static images against animated GIFs to compare the impact each has on your campaign performance.

Recover Abandoned Carts

With hundreds of exclusive deals competing for customers’ attention, purchase flows can become more interrupted than usual during the Black Friday period. And with online traffic at its peak, we naturally see higher amounts of abandoned purchases.

Use triggered push notifications to automatically retarget users who have left items in their cart. Remember, your users are likely comparing prices and brands to seek the best deals on their cart items, so how can you encourage them to return and convert?

Offer free shipping, a discount code, or create a sense of urgency if the item is in popular demand and selling fast.

Send Time-Sensitive Promotions

Many people hold off on purchasing specific products during the year, hoping to snap up a better deal around Black Friday. As soon as November arrives, customers wait in eager anticipation for the sales to launch and prices to drop.

The increase in online shopping (56% of all BF shoppers purchased online in 2021) has reduced the frantic in-store dashes to snatch up the best deals, but it’s still possible to replicate this same urgency for e-commerce. 

Instill a sense of urgency and exclusivity with promotional push notifications, so customers know they are getting a great deal. 

Emphasize the time-sensitive nature of your offers in your messaging to maximize conversions during this peak discount period.

Many sale items quickly run out of stock, so inform your users that they must purchase soon if they are to avail of these short-term offers.

Delivering tactical push messages like this can be the deciding factor for many customers still weighing up their options and comparing among brands.

Attract Nearby Users to Your Stores

If your users are on the high street or in a shopping center during the Black Friday weekend, they are likely doing some in-person shopping. That’s not to say they won’t also shop online, but if they are physically on the go and near your premises, it’s the perfect time to promote your in-store Black Friday deals, particularly if an offer or experience is unavailable online.

For example, a coffeehouse could have a merchandise sale online and a drinks promotion in-store. A department store could offer complimentary gift wrapping or a barista serving coffee to customers while they browse—experiences that are not available online.

Use your users' location data to trigger timely notifications about your Black Friday offers when they are within a specified distance from your physical store.

Final Thoughts

Black Friday is a huge opportunity for apps to engage highly motivated shoppers actively searching for deals.

Take advantage of the biggest traffic-driving event of the year through tactical push messages that inform users of your best deals, remind them about items in their cart, and invite them to avail of in-store exclusives.

Track and analyze your campaigns to understand what worked, what didn’t work, and why. This data will lay the foundation for your efforts next year and give you a head start in optimizing your message content, timing, and audiences.

Push is an essential channel for engaging users all year round—during the holiday season and beyond.

Learn how 100s of mobile-first brands deliver perfectly timed, personalized messaging to their mobile and desktop app audiences using Swrve.