Black Friday Checklist: How to Prepare Your Website for BFCM

Shania Fernandez
Shania Fernandez

Black Friday is just over a month away. How can you prepare to 5x your revenue?

This year, with many consumers opting to shop for non-essentials from home, the Black Friday/Cyber Monday (BFCM) weekend is looking a bit different than usual. Traditional big-box retailers, including Walmart and Target have already announced they’ll be closed for Thanksgiving, which has historically marked the beginning of the shopping weekend.

This means that this holiday season, eCommerce is more important than ever and it’s predicted to be the busiest online shopping period ever.

November and December are the two biggest months in terms of eCommerce sales volumes. In particular, Singles Day in China and Black Friday weekend are the key peaks of eComm. To take advantage of these increased volumes, you need to make sure your website can actually handle the traffic. 

Here are ten things you should do to prepare for BFCM weekend.

  1. Test your server capacity: make sure your website can handle increased traffic with a load testing tool like k6. A load test will fake a traffic surge to see how your website performs.
  2. Optimize your website for mobile: by 2021, it’s estimated that 71% of all online sales will take place on a mobile device. To optimize your website, you can minimize pop-ups, ensure your buttons are tap-friendly, have clear CTAs, and use responsive design.
  3. Check your website loading speed: use sites like Google’s PageSpeed Insights or GTmetrix to analyze the content of your web page and generate specific suggestions to improve its speed.
  4. Take stock of your inventory: knowing your current inventory numbers will help you see if you can meet expected demand, and it will allow you to tailor your discounts. Plus, having accurate stock numbers is important for avoiding many customer service challenges.
  5. Plan and design all the assets you need: think about all the graphics you’ll need to prepare in advance. In addition to your paid ads, what other assets do you need updated? This may include your website banner and product shots.
  6. Build suspense and tease your upcoming discounts: in the weeks leading up to Black Friday, share sneak peeks of the discounts you’ll be having on your website. Additionally, you can add a countdown to create buzz for BFCM weekend.
  7. Boost your SEO ranking: SEO is an effective way to put your website in front of consumers who are already looking for Black Friday deals. Incorporate Black Friday-related keywords in your page titles, urls, and alt-text to boost your SEO ranking.
  8. Simplify your navigation: simplify the purchasing journey by gathering all your Black Friday promotions in one page or collection on your website.
  9. Set a system in place to be available for customers: during BFCM weekend, you’ll likely have an increase in customer questions. One way to manage this is by adding a live chat function on your website or using a customer service help desk like Gorgias.
  10. Build trust through an SSL certificate: shoppers want to make sure their data is secure when they complete a purchase on your website. Relieve any customer worries by showing on your checkout page and/or footer that your website is protected.
Black Friday website checklist