For Shapeways shop owners, the holidays can be the most lucrative time of year. But, you have to be prepared for the major days that lead up to those few magical weeks in November and December. Today’s tips are all about how to win Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday. We make an effort to embrace all global traditions in our community, but given that a significant portion of our shopper traffic comes from the United States, we want you to be prepared.
A version of this piece was originally published by Savannah Peterson, the former Shapeways director of global community.
Take a deep breath. Look around at the products you’ve created. And get in the zone. We are entering the highest traffic time of the year here at Shapeways, and we want you to capture as much of it as possible, bringing excited new customers to your shops. We try hard to showcase the diversity of great products on Shapeways, but with millions of models uploaded, it’s impossible to feature everyone — so it’s important to put in the work to get the word out about your shop. Below is a guide for how you can optimize every day in the biggest holiday shopping weekend of the year.
Three Golden Rules:
- Schedule posts on your preferred social platforms: Shapeways shoppers come from around the world – you never know when they’re watching. Buffer is my favorite for this, and Tweetdeck and Hootsuite work great as well. Both are free and work seamlessly with all your twitter accounts. This will help pace your content if you get caught up with a customer during the day.
- Respond to People Quickly: People are looking to buy between Black Friday-Cyber Monday more than any other time of the year. This also means they’re looking to transact quickly. Be extra responsive to private messages, product comments, and engagement on social media. Showing people they matter goes a long way.
- Be Shameless: Yes, we all want to avoid being spammy. Telling people about something they want or would be interested in however, isn’t spammy. Include educational tips and designer scoop on how you make your creations, how we 3D Print them etc. and include a product in every post. By giving your audience something (awesome behind the curtains info) you appear as much like an educator as you do a business-oriented person. We’ll be looking to share your posts with the greater Shapie community, so keep ’em coming!
Three Important Days:
- Black Friday: Historically the theme of Black Friday is “doorbusters” aka Early-Bird deals for shoppers. Take advantage of the buzz online by including #BlackFriday in your communications. Consider experimenting with lower prices on a few of your pieces early in the morning to see if you can increase demand. If you’re putting an item on Sale, be sure an indicate in the product descriptions so your shoppers know to take advantage of this special deal! Historically very popular in the US.
- Small Business Saturday: A lovely day branded initially by AmericanExpress, #SmallBusinessSaturday is meant to celebrate the Independently owned businesses in our communities, both digital and IRL. Take the opportunity to tell people about your business, the collections you have available now, and the direction you would like to take it in the future. Though started in the US, it has spread across the globe. Take this day to tell your story through your products.
- Cyber Monday: The mother of all online shopping days. A global phenomena that brings more people to e-commerce land than any other day. Schedule the most posts across the most networks on this day. We’ve got some great surprises in store on-site, so be sure and check it out. #CyberMonday is the tag to go with, and discounts are the currency. Don’t feel like you have to have a sale, however, as many of you are already so modest with your markups.
Cover image: Christmas Bauble 4 by Actual Factual Fiction. A previous version of this article originally appeared in Shapeways Magazine on November 21, 2014.