The 3 Black Friday Shopping Personas and How to Move From Generalized Discounting to Targeted Experiences
Typically a time of mass discounting, brands can minimize costly price slashing and set themselves apart by understanding and tailoring experiences based on the three main Black Friday shopping personas.
This article was originally published in German on Horizont.
The Friday after Thanksgiving traditionally sees the biggest discount battles of the year, with promotions, deals, and bargains beckoning everywhere. And as consumers plan their purchases well before Black Friday (as early on as October), it is essential to understand the behavioral patterns and needs of different shoppers to reach them in a targeted manner. This will allow brands to prevail over the competition in the discount jungle, and, more importantly, without having to slash prices for every customer.
Different customers require different approaches
Every holiday shopper is different, with some spending a long time researching what they plan to buy and for whom, while others seek out or respond spontaneously to tempting offers they interact with during the buying process. In Dynamic Yield’s experience working with leading brands across eCommerce over the last decade, our team of experts have identified three different patterns of action, which most potential buyers follow, that can be used to tailor experiences during the busy Black Friday period.
1. “The Gifter”
These customers are of lower intent as they browse the web in search of the right gifts for their loved ones. In no real rush, their chances of bouncing from the site are high, which requires them to be immediately engaged through the highlighting and personalization of hero banners, messaging, and content with strong value propositions, product differentiators, promotions, and financial incentives.
Additional Recommendation: Cutting through the noise becomes incredibly important for these shoppers, so think about disrupting places like the product listing page with holiday-specific deal content modules. Teams can also double down on storytelling about the brand and even recapture potentially deterred shoppers with exit-intent notifications that bring them back to context with the right promotion, recommendation, support cue, or urgency messaging.
2. “The Researcher”
There are many customers who, in looking for special products for their loved ones, spend a long time researching and comparing offers and products across websites before they buy. Looking for confidence in their decisions, brands should pair driving discovery around their core assortment of valued products with validation from other shoppers through social proof messaging, highlighting the visitor’s selection is highly desired or frequently purchased (e.g. X people also have this item in their shopping cart).
Additional Recommendation: To reduce friction on product detail pages, time-sensitive order information can also be included, such as when the item will ship, when it is expected to be delivered, and other important information that can calm this type of shopper’s nerves. Finally, sometimes researchers need a little push to act, so countdown timers can create the urgency needed to push a transaction over the finish line.
3. “The Big Spender”
Showing the highest intent out of our three categories of shoppers, these individuals are ready to buy, with early interest anticipated, given that holiday shopping will become more expensive later in the season with inflation. While they don’t need much to capture a purchase, there is a large opportunity to encourage greater loyalty as well as average order value through cross-selling and upselling.
Additional Recommendation: Focus on experiences deeper in the funnel, which might include wishlist sign-ups, cart progress bars highlighting how much money they are away from free shipping or a promotional deal, which can be complemented by recommending stocking stuffers to help them hit the threshold faster. Personalized landing pages with sets of recommendation widgets based on Affinity, Recently Viewed With, and Popularity strategies can also be used to create an exclusive “Holiday Gift Guide” experience.
Recipe for success: Getting your audience engagement strategies right.
While Black Friday is typically a time associated with mass discounting, brands can both minimize the costs associated with price slashing and also set themselves apart by understanding and tailoring experiences based on the three main shopping personas outlined above.