How to sky-rocket your Black Friday sales in 2018 - Black Friday marketing guide

With Black Friday and Cyber Monday getting closer and closer, you need to get ready with a very good marketing plan if you want to boost your sales this year.

Catalina Mihai
Catalina Mihai
Online marketing specialist
November 19, 2018

With Black Friday and Cyber Monday getting closer and closer, you need to get ready with a very good marketing plan if you want to boost your sales this year.

It’s never too early to start working on your Black Friday & Cyber Monday campaigns

Black Friday & Cyber Monday are the biggest shopping events of the year. Why not try to make the best of it? Here are 7 important email marketing tips:

1. Gain subscribers
If you want to boost your subscriber list, you can try to improve the urgency and offerings for your products. Also, you can change the copy on your signup forms in order to emphasize the holiday season offerings.

Black Friday Signup Form Example

Lastly, you should also invest in advertising campaigns - most popular are Facebook and Google Ads (Instagram is also in top).

2. Start earlier for your VIP customers
For your best customers, you can even go bigger with discounts and offers. That is a great strategy because, highly segmented emails that go to your VIP list (might be 1-5% of your overall list) will most likely outperform the rest of the customers.

3. It’s all about the offer
It’s super important to make sure that your offer is compelling. I would say that it’s the only time of the year when you can lower your prices without feeling like you’re losing brand integrity.

4. Test your subject lines
Having a good open rate might be a tricky thing. Most of the time is a combination of time of day, day of the week, weather or many other things.
Getting back to subject lines, you first need to decide if you want to use the word “free”, if it’s better to say “discount” or “sale” or even that the discount will be 50%. Unfortunately, you will not have enough time to test all that, so the best thing you can do is to do an A/B test.
A/B testing allows you to enter two different versions of the subject line and see which one performs better.

5. Send “Abandoned Cart” emails
Why not just one email? you will ask. Well, sending a series of cart recovery emails will keep your products on their minds. For example, you can send the first recovery email 1 hour after the customer abandons his/her cart, the second one after 12 hours and the last one after 24 hours.

6. Use “power words”
Power words are words that elicit certain emotions in your customers that get them to take action. Some examples you can use include…

  • Sale
  • Free
  • % Off
  • Exciting
  • Exclusive
  • Secret

Simple, but effective. :)

7. Validate your emails before sending your campaign
Another important thing is to validate your email lists before sending your Black Friday campaign! How to do that? An easy way to validate your email list it to upload it to an email validation service, push the “Validate” button and wait for the results. After your list has been validated, you can be sure that your open rate will be higher and your ROI will increase.

8. Create a sense of Urgency
Urgency is a very powerful marketing tool. This is especially true when talking about email promotions. In fact, creating a sense of urgency in your emails can increase sales by over 300%! For example, you can introduce a timer or scarcity so that your users understand that there is a limit to the great deals you’ll be offering.

9. Refine your subject lines.
If you want to beat the inbox competition around Black Friday, your subject line must be engaging and super catchy. To craft a subject line that stands out, try one or a few of these tactics:

  • Describe your discount or sale.
  • Mention how much time people have to claim your deal.
  • Be funny.
  • Keep your subject line under 30 characters.
  • Use one or more emojis.

10. The “SURPRISE, THERE’S MORE!” email
If everything else fails, you can surprise them by extending your Black Friday or Cyber Monday sale by a day or two.

Important note!

  • Don’t tell people your sale will be extended until after it ends. Otherwise, people might put off buying and you could lose customers.
  • Don’t use this tactic too often, or people will catch on and expect it every time.

11. Segment your email list
Segmentation is an important part of your email strategy. The most important segmentations you must do, are:

  • Seasonal Shoppers
  • Recent Openers
  • VIP Customers
  • Product Browsers
  • Category Buyers
  • Hasn’t Purchased (but is engaged)
  • Email Ignorers
  • Almost Purchasers
  • Geographic Targets
  • Gift Givers

Based on those segmentations, you will be able to create emails and offers tailored to their needs.

General requirements for Black Friday

Make sure your website is mobile friendly

Did you know that on last year's Black Friday, 47.4% of retail website visits and 33.1% of online revenue happened on a mobile device?
If your emails (and your website) aren’t mobile-optimized, you’re missing out potential sales. I can bet you don’t want that. :)

The solution?
While you can check your mobile-friendliness using tools like Google’s Mobile-Friendly test, the best way to be sure is to send yourself your Black Friday emails and also make a test purchase from your mobile phone.
The only way to really understand how easy (or not!) is to make a purchase on your website is going through the process like a real customer and see how it goes.

Increase your website speed


Use Social Media and take advantage of the related hashtags

When you are making your marketing strategy for Black Friday you should be taking advantage of Black Friday focused Instagram hashtags in addition to your regular ones. Hashtags you might want to include are: #blackfriday #blackfriday2018 #cybermonday #sale #blackfridaysale #blackfridaydeals. This will allow you to reach customers who are specifically looking for Black Friday deals.

You can host a holiday contest on Social Media

Create a holiday contest that engages your audience on social media. For example, you can ask the audience to make a short video that shows how your products make the holidays brighter or how they use your products. As a reward, you can give the winner a deal that’s redeemable only on Black Friday, such as 50% off coupon code.


  • Aweber made a pack of gifs that can be downloaded for free, you can check them out here: Gifs Festive Guide.
  • Example of teasing email:

Subject: Black Friday Sales Are Coming! Here’s What to Expect

Hey, [name]!
Are you as excited as we are for Black Friday?

To celebrate the holidays and eating turkey, we’re running our biggest sale yet. Starting at midnight Thanksgiving day, >we’re opening up 40% OFF our hottest products!

Keep in mind that stock is limited and it’s on a first-come, first-served basis!

Don’t want to miss out? Click here to join our special Black Friday email list to be among the first to get notified when our >sales happen (and when stock is getting low).

Until then, wishing you a happy dinner with friends & family!


Ready or Not, Black Friday Is Coming, You Can’t Hide …

Black Friday is knocking at the door and you must be ready for it.
Start preparing for these trends today and you can maximize success in this holiday season. You should also be ready in case your success exceeds your expectations… ;)

Written by
Catalina Mihai
Online marketing specialist

Passionate about many things, but mostly about Online Marketing. I am a Digital Marketing Specialist and also the Co-founder of CodeMix.

Have questions?

We are ready to help you.

Visit our help center
A repository of technical and non-technical articles about Verifalia's services.
Send us a message
Contact us with any questions or comments: support is always free of charge.

Want to chat?
Click the button below to chat live with one of our support team right now.