It's somewhat inevitable this year's Black Friday will be just that considering the weather forecast... But Black Friday doesn't refer to the worsening weather or "end of the world" theories as the name may suggest. It's the Friday before Cyber Monday and will take place on Friday 28th November this year. Similarly to Cyber Monday, Black Friday started as an American concept named so due to the mayhem caused by the first unofficial day of Christmas shopping. Its negative connotation has since been turned on its head, used instead to describe businesses as being "in the black"  in terms of profit. Thanks to Amazon's release of UK discounts over Black Friday four years ago Britain now has more opportunities to increase sales and profit.  

How Do I Take Advantage of Black Friday?

As Cyber Monday is purely focused on online sales it may seem the success of Black Friday is harder for companies who're taking online bookings to harness. But Black Friday shouldn't be written off. The Telegraph even say Black Friday 2014 is set to be "the biggest online shopping day ever in the UK". It's clear to see the last Friday in November is fast becoming as influential an online presence as its Monday counterpart. Just follow BookingLive's simple steps to ensure your business's sales increase just in time for Christmas!

1. Build Suspense

Build suspense by incorporating a count down timer in to your website or post tweets and Facebook statuses stating things such as "only 1 week to go until we release our Black Friday discounts!". Not only will this build suspense and excitement but it'll also ensure customers don't forget.

2. Be Bold

Emphasise your offer of discounts and deals as being for "one day only" and "exclusive" to grab new and existing customer's attention and to ensure your discounts stand out more than your competitors'. It'll also prevent users from slipping in to the "I'll look later" mentality that many businesses are guilty of causing. When customers think they have a large window of time in which to make a booking or purchase they're more likely to put it off and end up leaving before completing the action.

3. Offer Gift Vouchers

Don't forget the all important festive period Black Friday is linked with! Provide your customers with gift options in the form of vouchers which they can print off, or have posted, wrap up and place under the Christmas tree in time for their friends and family to unwrap, redeem and enjoy.

BookingLive integrate with well-known gift agents such as Groupon and so you can sell and redeem vouchers directly from your website. For a full list of voucher redemption companies BookingLive integrate with check out our integrations page.

4.  Timing is Key

We recommend setting your promotions to run from midnight on the 28th to midnight on the 29th to ensure your customers feel they're getting a full 24 hour period in which to make the most of your offers. This is especially important for UK customers as Friday 28th isn't a holiday so many people will be inactive online during the day due to being at work. Keep an eye on the morning, lunchtime and evenings as these are typically the most busy in terms of online bookings and sales.

5. Interact Throughout the Day

By interacting with customers via social media throughout the 28th you'll create a sense of urgency. Consider updates such as "only 3 places left on the April skydive, book now to avoid disappointment" to persuade people to book on our buy vouchers.

6. Check Your Website & Booking System's Capabilities

If you've followed our steps so far you'll no doubt experience an increase in traffic to your site on the Friday. But is your website capable of handling this? BookingLive's booking systems and websites come armed with features and are securely hosted by Rackspace with 100% uptime. This ensures your website doesn't crash during busy periods such as Black Friday. If you're interested in our website design services please contact our Sales Executive.

Don't wait until Boxing Day to offer discounts, now more people than ever are aware of Black Friday this year looks set to smash last year's records in terms of sales. Ensure your business is ready to take advantage of the day with BookingLive's powerful and specialist online booking systems. Check out our plans & pricing page or contact our Sales Executive today!