Flash sales are short-term discounts or promotions offered by e-commerce stores. As the name implies, these types of sales campaigns will end soon.. It has been an effective promotional tool for businesses.
You can have a flash sale at any e-commerce store, but it’s not easy. Flash sales failures can damage profits, damage your brand image, and attract dishonest, one-off customers. On the contrary, a well-executed flash sale can increase customer loyalty, help customer acquisition, and move excess inventory.
We’ll be sharing with you the best course of action when it comes to e-commerce flash sales. This includes the best time to run and four important factors to consider.
Definition of Flash Sale
As mentioned above, it is a promotional discount for a short span of time that e-commerce businesses opt to offer to customers, and can sometimes go up to 50% to 70% discount from the Manufacturer Suggested Retail Price (MSRP). This is the price recommended by the manufacturer of the product for sale at the point of sale.
Importance of Flash Sales for E-Commerce Businesses
Shoppers have their tools to help them look for the lowest possible price of the item they are looking for. And a flash sale is something that they can perfectly look forward to at lower prices. This can surely help with the boosting of sales.
- Provides Space For New Inventory
Removal of seasonal or special items to make room for new inventory can be difficult at times. And with the flash sales, it can surely help with the great clearance of these old inventory, providing space for the upcoming ones. Whatever products you may be selling, this kind of sale is really considerably helpful for inventory management.
- Discharge of Overstocked Products
The bigger the used inventory storage, the higher the cost it will incur. And with proper inventory optimization, you can surely have ways to develop a healthier inventory management.
However, we can’t remove the fact that overstocking can happen at times. This can be stocked until they are bought, but a flash sale will be a great option to have it discharged much faster, providing more space on the new inventory to come.
- Break even on Products Low in Sales
Similar to overstocked products, low-selling products can stay on your inventory storage for a long span of time, and may take up so much of the space. And with flash sales, these items can be sold, may not earn from the cost, but at least break even with its capital.
- Improvement on Sales
Studies show that flash sales help increase transaction rates by 35%. This is helpful for e-commerce replenishment of new inventories. No matter what you need it for, flash sales are a great way to increase your short-term sales.
When is The Best Time To Run a Flash Sale?
If you ask an ecommerce specialist, you’ll know that the best time for a flash sale depends on what type of items a business is selling, since every product has their own season and when it makes sense for them to make a flash sale.
But here’s the most advisable times for flash deals:
- Prior holiday season
Everytime Holiday season comes, customers are used to the blast marketing emails about flash sales. And now, every time this season comes, customers will always look for deals, technically called flash sale fatigue.
Releasing flash deals before the exact holiday season can surely give you an advancement from the other competitors when it comes to winning new customers.
- Right after the holiday season
After the holiday, you might experience returns of orders for unclaimed parcels. With a flash sale made after the holiday season, it can help you sell out these unwanted order returns to avoid loss of income.
- Once Every Few Months
A consistency in providing flash deals to the customers can surely boost your brand’s reputability. We celebrate different holidays per month and that would be a great timing for running flash sales.
How long is a typical flash sale?
The technique to a successful flash sale is the period of time it will run online. The shorter the time, the better. This will give each customer that will see it a sense of urgency to take advantage of the special deal since it will only run for a limited time. According to research, 50% of flash sale orders are placed within the first hour. Most flash sales take a few hours to 36 hours.
Four Factors to Consider When Running a Flash Sale:
Running a flash sale is not that easy, and there are factors you must consider before putting it up online for a strategic successful outcome.
- Selecting A Product
Product research is very much needed for every e-commerce business. Target markets should be identified beforehand, to ensure that customers will be eyeing on your items online during these flash sales.
One of the tips when it comes to targeting new customers is to choose an item that is very in demand and sell it at a lower price than your competitors. The lower, the more you’ll win the customer. Pretty basic. Once they are already aware of your brand, and they liked the item they ordered from you, that means that you have gained a repurchaser.
When targeting existing customers, one tactic is to choose articles with high page views but low in conversion rates. Products that customers check, but do not buy, are definitely a good way to move extra inventory.
- Sale Promotion
Promotion is an important factor as well when it comes to flash sales to maximize the sales. It is advisable to market your flash sale before it starts to ensure that customers will be able to find it, as flash sales are only a short span of time.
As Shopify says, successful flash sale marketing, regardless of industry, audience, or marketing channel, is summarized in the following formula: Great merchandise + deep discount
Marketing emphasizes product quality, limited inventory and time, and super-discounted prices. When it comes to when and where to sell a flash sale, according to Experian research, sending an email to your target audience just before the sale is one of the most effective techniques.
We also recommended taking advantage of the promotion via social media sites such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, as they are more accessible for the customers for easier reach.
Promotions should include a high-quality photo of the items you are seeing that must be fond of engagement. Adding photos is recommended as it has a higher chance to be noticed by the social media users.
- Inventory Management
Study shows that more than 45% of the items are sold even during sale, resulting in disappointed customers and may drive out possible new customers. With proper inventory management, you can ensure enough stock at the time of the flash sales.
- Order Fulfillment
The customer’s journey starts when the checkout button is clicked. And their experience will be a deciding factor for them if they will be doing a repurchase.
It is necessary to work with your Third Party Logistics to make sure that everything is ready to process and is all set for the flash sale. It is also vital that you notify your e-commerce fulfillment provider that you are expecting a higher volume of orders than normal, within a span of time.
Reputable 3PL, like Chicago Shipper, ensures that customers receive orders quickly and cheaply. This will give you a great customer experience from start to finish of the flash sale and you can expect to come back to buy something at full price.
Find out how Chicago Shipper can help you with your e-commerce business growth! Get assisted by our friendly customer care through https://chicagoshipper.com/.