Learn how to use store credits in your BFCM ads strategy to get more conversions and boost retention.
Black Friday Cyber Monday (BFCM) is from November 24 to 27, 2023!
Many reports suggest 2023 is going to be a stellar year for BFCM sales and profits.
As consumers are shopping online more than ever, mobile sales are increasing, and there’s a growing comfort with cross-border purchases amongst customers, opportunities for Shopify retailers preparing for the BFCM period have increased.
But are you tapping into these opportunities? Have you planned your BFCM ads strategy to match this consumer frenzy?
In this article, we share actionable strategies for your Shopify BFCM 2023 sale season with a special focus on BFCM ads and store credits. Read on!
77% of marketers say social media marketing has been effective for their company this year.
The global eCommerce market is going to reach $6.3 trillion this year. eCommerce is expanding across borders, and this is especially beneficial for BFCM sales. Consumers from across the world shop from overseas brands during the BFCM sale season.
This has an impact on BFCM ad strategies as well.
It’s no surprise that the total social media ad spending is projected to reach $226 billion by the end of this year, and $384 billion by 2027.
To put things in perspective, an average customer sees around 10,000 ads every day.
But this overload of ads can have a negative impact on your customers.
Moreover, during the BFCM period, the influx of promotional content and ads can reach a point where it can exhaust customers.
It can cause choice paralysis—making decision-making harder for customers. It can leave them confused and indecisive. As a result, it can hurt your revenue and profits.
For example, too many discount options for the same product on different websites can overwhelm customers. In the shopping frenzy, customers would go for the site that offers the highest discounts. As a result, cause your conversion rates to fall.
This effect has been proven scientifically through Hick’s Law. See this graph:
And so it’s critical that your BFCM ads strategy stands out from the crowd. So, let’s deep-dive into how you can ensure a unique and attractive BFCM ads strategy with store credits.
Store credit is a feature or a program that enables eCommerce stores to restore an amount or credit points to the customers’ accounts. Customers can use store credits to make purchases.
Businesses may give store credits to customers for various reasons. Some of them are:
- When customers return a product, instead of refunding cash, businesses restore the amount with store credits
- Brands offer store credits as incentives in return for favorable actions. For example, for social media follows and shares
- When customers sign up for a customer account
- On customers birthday
- For every purchase made by customers
Let’s take a look at some of the reasons why we recommend using Shopify store credits in your BFCM marketing and advertising strategy:
During the BFCM sale, the eCommerce space is flooded with discounts. Every store tries to beat the other by offering more discounts.
While this may seem exciting initially, the novelty can soon wear off. Discounts can start to seem monotonous to shoppers.
In this situation, a new incentive such as store credit can add a breath of fresh air.
Newness creates the perception of value—psychology studies have proven this. For example, one study shows that when we human beings see something new, it stimulates the part of our brain that is responsible for reward processing and controlling motivation.
Thus, when customers come across an opportunity to earn store credits instead of discounts, it immediately appeals to their minds.
During BFCM, people want to shop more. This is where the words ‘store credit’ provide immediate gratification, as shoppers associate store credits with direct money.
Here are some tips for your BFCM ads:
- Offer store credits instead of discounts
- Run social media ads to promote the offer
- Let customers know they can use the store credits earned to make more purchases
- Show a comparison between discounts and store credits
- Mention in the ads how many store credits customers can earn
Benefits of offering store credit vs. discount:
- Store credit improves customer loyalty as it encourages customers to shop more
- Store credit offers a higher value of satisfaction as it is equivalent to cash
- It can be used immediately after customers receive it, to purchase more
During the BFCM sale time, eCommerce brands get into competing with each other to give better discounts. And this can get hard to keep up with—other brands will offer bigger discounts to beat your offers.
If you get into the competition game and offer more discounts, you could cut your profits.
But, when you offer store credit instead of a discount, there are many advantages. What is more, when you incorporate store credits in your ads, you can multiply the ROI:
- To begin with, your offer stands out from the crowd
- Including store credit in your BFCM ads helps promote your offers better to a wider audience
- Continuously optimize the ads with new keywords based on consumers’ searches
- Your BFCM ads on social media are more likely to get more engagement because your offer is unique
- Your customers feel motivated to buy more with the credits earned
- You can create more unique and innovative campaigns compared to competitors offering discount
- Store credit is easily measurable. For example, when you offer 50 store credits, your customers know its monetary value
One of the most common Shopify BFCM strategies is discounts—every brand offers discounts. Consumers see an overflow of discounts. And so, in between a sea of discounts, when they see another incentive such as ‘store credit’, it grabs their attention.
Most consumers shop from multiple stores during the BFCM sale. And here’s how they shop: they look for the same item on various websites. Then, they compare the prices and discounts offered by different stores. And end up buying from the site that offers the maximum discount.
But when you limit choices, you can reduce choice paralysis (discussed earlier in this blog).
When you offer store credits as an incentive, customers won’t be able to compare your offer with other brands because you may be the only store offering store credit.
Therefore, customers will purchase products they like from your store. This also makes their shopping experience less confusing and faster.
The comparison activity gets removed significantly from the time you start promoting your BFCM offer.
For example, when you run ads on social media to promote your store credit offers, consumers won’t be able to compare your offer with other brands because they most likely won’t be offering store credit.
However, here are a few best practices to follow for your BFCM store credit offer ads:
- Start your ad promotions much before the BFCM weekend so that your offers register in customers’ memory
- Starting early can also help you build a remarketing/retargeting strategy—retarget those who engaged with your BFCM ads
- Ensure your online store credits tools are in place to track the performance of your BFCM ads strategy
- Run BFCM ads on multiple platforms such as social media, search engines, on third-party websites, etc.
When you run social ads to promote your BFCM store credit offers, you’d be targeting different types of customers who fall under various segments.
Moreover, you would be targeting specific consumer segments based on your customer research. This means, your BFCM ads are highly targeted and will bring a better return on your ad spend.
You can make the most of your BFCM store credits ads strategy by targeting different customer segments across funnels.
Here are the different segments you should target:
|WHO THEY ARE||As you’d be starting your BFCM store credit ads a few weeks before the BFCM weekend, you can use these ads to attract and warm up new potential customers.||This customer segment is based on your current customers persona and behavior.||This group of customers has recently purchased from your store. They are among your loyal customers. Hence, it is also easier for you to retarget them with a BFCM ads strategy.|
|HOW TO PROMOTE BFCM STORE CREDIT OFFERS TO THEM||You could create generic ads that promote your store credit offers for the BFCM sale, or you could try dynamic ads so that you do not have to create many different ads for different customers.||Create a list of your current customers and upload it on your social media channel, such as Facebook.
The platform will then target other new potential customers based on the segment you have shared.
You can even combine a retargeting strategy with this—target those who engaged with your ads to bring them to your website during the BFCM sale.
|Based on data from these customers —- the products they browsed, items in their wishlists, recently viewed items, and recent purchases, send them targeted and personalized ads to promote your store credits offer for BFCM.|
|Pro tip: While most brands follow the top, middle and bottom sequence, why not reverse the sequence? Pay more attention to the bottom of the funnel segment. Why so? Because they are your more loyal, high-spending segment, they will definitely buy from your BFCM sale. This means for sure revenue.|
Some more BFCM ads tips:
- Segment customers and target them with ads relevant to their stages in the buyer cycle
- For example, offer 100 credit points to new potential customers and 200 if they buy again from your store during the sale
- Create different customer segments and different ads for each group of customers. In addition, you could also create different landing pages for each segment
Let’s understand how and why store credits have a viral effect by comparing it with discounts.
When you offer discounts to your customers, it doesn’t lead to another favorable action such as more purchases. Your customers would most likely avail of the discount by making one purchase. They won’t be motivated to buy more.
On the contrary, when you offer store credits, your customers receive something with which they can buy more items from your store.
You can design your BFCM store credits ads in such a way that they drive customers to take more action. You can think creatively and come up with ideas that engage.
Here’s what to do for your Shopify BFCM strategy:
- Encourage customers to make a purchase to unlock store credits
- As soon as they make a purchase, offer more store credits to share their purchase on social media
- You could even tie in your wishlist feature with this. For example, ask customers to buy items from their wishlists to earn extra store credits
- Or you could request a review/feedback in return for store credits
- Merge your different marketing strategies with your BFCM Shopify store credits ads
- If customers didn’t sign up during the BFCM purchase, nudge them to sign up and earn some store credits
- Encourage customers to bring new customers via referrals program connected to your store credit program
- Create a gamified store credit program—it will encourage customers to earn more credits during the BFCM sale
The idea behind attracting new customers should never be a one-off sale but to build long-term loyal customers.
If you craft proper strategies to attract new customers during the BFCM sale, you’d most probably grow your sign-ups during the sale.
Once the BFCM frenzy is over, you can craft different strategies to bring back these new customers to your site.
You can do so by tying in your regular marketing strategies to target your new customers. Here are some ways to do so:
- Segment your new customers to target them with promotional campaigns
- The segmentation criteria will depend on your campaign goals
- Encourage new customers to add products to their wishlists
- Collect customer data during the BFCM sale to use it for future marketing strategies
- Run store specific marketing campaigns after BFCM sale is over
- Bring them back to your site and show them their recently viewed products
- Offer incentives on the purchase of products they had liked during the BFCM sale but did not end up buying
15 Shopify BFCM ads tips and checklist
1. Do a thorough BFCM ads keyword research
2. Set goals for your BFCM ads strategy
3. Conduct customer research for targeted segmentation
4. Create BFCM ads to target different customer segments
5. Organize BFCM ads strategy material much in advance
6. Plan your BFCM ads budgets
7. Continuously analyze and optimize BFCM ads
8. Set up automations on your Shopify store
9. Integrate automations for your BFCM marketing strategy
10. Use a Shopify store credit tool that provides comprehensive marketing capabilities
12. Consumers will shop more via smartphones so optimize ads for the small screen
13. Analyze and optimize your top performing ads channels during BFCM
14. Run international BFCM ads to attract global customers
15. Run banner ads to promote your BFCM sale
Now you know many different BFCM marketing strategies to leverage store credits, boost BFCM sales, and engage customers post-BFCM.
That said, we aren’t against discounts. Discount strategies do work well. Infact, you could combine your discount and store credit strategies to attract, engage, and retain customers.
We’re trying to emphasize that a store credits BFCM strategy can give you many benefits which you might not have explored earlier.
And to help you set up your store credits feature and marketing, we have one of the best Shopify store credits apps — Flits.
Flits Customer Account Page app offers the Store Credits add-on feature.