On line retailers are gearing up. Friday was the big day for the brick and mortar retailers. Picking up a head of steam is the event of the year now gaining broader media attention known as Small Business Saturday. Now there is one more chance for shoppers to turn out and score great deals on holiday gifts. Cyber Monday starts today and is an on line bash. Three times more shoppers are expected than participated in this year’s Black Friday. Best part is all you need is a connection to the internet.
What are Cyber Monday retail companies doing to prepare? “Well, the planning parts have been done already.” Says HR Manager Jennifer, who works for an online retailer. “We will have more people ready on the phones. Our goal will be to try to cut down on the hold times. We want our customers to have a great on line experience and we are ready. The warehouse is full and the shipping and receiving departments are dialed. We are looking for this Cyber Monday to be a great day for us.” Jennifer also says that her company had a good return from last year’s Cyber Monday. “It is easy to get overwhelmed. We have been planning this for several months. We starting staffing and training about two weeks ago and our operations department has been improving since last year. We are a smaller company so we have to strike while the iron is hot, so to speak.”
Also interviewed for this article was Alex of an electronics distributor with a strong on line following. “These days, we run so many specials and sales from our on line presence that it always feels like Cyber Monday around here. We stock thousands of items from batteries to tablets and everything you can imagine. We are the go to site for thousands of techies and we always have special. Our customers know to check our prices on popular items. For Cyber Monday, we have specials on a pretty good selection. We are ready for the rush. One big difference for us is our experience. We do this every day so the surge on line is nothing new for us. We appreciate the support for our brand and Cyber Monday we give a little back. It is a big event for us regardless of how you look at it.”
While many retailers depend on the end of year events such as Black Friday and Cyber Monday, most see it as an opportunity to provide a great on line shopping experience and personalized attention to their on line customer base. Many retailers have been driving email address campaigns for months so that there is a strong customer database to work from. It is common to see retailers organize around the technology and transaction styles. Companies have healthy bricks and mortar sales, an established catalog business, and now a complimentary on line shopping experience. It is a powerful model and is a proven success. Connecting with the customer looks like it is here to stay!