Eager to Net More Black Friday Sales? Test, Test, Test to Improve the Customer Experience.
Nov 17, 2022
Customers love to shop, especially at the end of the year. In 2021, Black Friday weekend purchases totaled almost $34 billion. But customers aren’t willing to support just any brand during this busy time—they expect their experiences to be excellent. So, what happens when they aren’t? Those customers take their business elsewhere. This year, to fully realize your Black Friday profits, make sure your customer experience is seamless and consistent across platforms.
PwC survey findings show how critical the consumer experience is and how much the pandemic has affected people’s loyalty toward companies. After a single negative interaction with a favorite brand, 32% of customers said they’d switch allegiances. So, your Black Friday preparation plan should include testing every part of your e-commerce customer experience. After all, e-commerce is on the rise, and not just on Cyber Monday.
Think of testing as the hidden key to netting those coveted end-of-year dollars. Even if your price is higher than a competitor’s, consumers will pay for a solid customer experience. Testing everything before going live will reduce backlash on social media. We live in a tech-driven world where frustrated customers are quick to share negative user experience reviews.
The more seamless a customer’s encounter with your brand, the higher the likelihood they’ll hand over their loyalty. And remember, customer loyalty is worth its weight in gold. People who consider themselves brand fans will often refer others and talk about their great experiences with your brand (both online and offline).
Testing can also increase your marketing ROI by helping you hold on to customers, which costs less than attracting new ones. When your website or app seamlessly meets your customer’s needs, you can expect those customers to stick around.
So, shift your testing strategy into high gear for Black Friday weekend to ensure everyone who chooses your brand enjoys a unique customer experience that leaves them wanting—and buying—more. Where can you start? Here are a few recommendations to help ensure you’re ready to handle a record-breaking number of online sales:
1. Test your checkout process.
Checkout testing is essential because shoppers will abandon online carts quickly. If your “add to cart” button doesn’t work or your checkout page doesn’t load, people will be frustrated—they’ll lose interest, and you’ll lose business.
Another common checkout hiccup is when coupon codes don’t work (talk about frustration for consumers!). People don’t like to feel like they’re wasting their time, so be sure all your specials are coded correctly. Bugs happen, but testing can help flush them out before the Black Friday rush.
2. Test the mobile-friendliness of your website.
We all shop on our phones, so your website needs to be mobile-friendly. Don’t just look to see if your interface has an appealing aesthetic across mobile devices; make sure it loads fast under normal conditions. Slow website speeds and mobile device fragmentation can rapidly lead to revenue loss and affect business.
Spend time looking for any bugs that mobile users could encounter. If you need to alter a page or product, run regression testing to ensure it doesn’t impact other pages. Of course, bug-fix validation is also crucial to verify whether the bug was fixed. Your goal should be an interface that’s intuitive, bug-free, and lightning-fast.
3. Test with the help of a partner.
We get it. Your team might find it challenging to focus on testing when there’s so much more on the Black Friday preparation to-do list. In that case, contact a trusted partner in the industry, such as CTG. We provide quality assurance assistance to test your digital assets across 3,000+ device configurations (including smartphones, tablets, and desktops) and find and squash bugs. Plus, we work with you to ensure your customers’ online experiences are top-notch.
Black Friday weekend isn’t just for buyers in the United States. People worldwide take advantage of holiday sales every year. If you don’t want to fail foreign customers, CTG’s team of expert QA specialists can help you test different scenarios on hundreds (or thousands) of internationally used devices under real-world conditions in various countries and languages.
4. Test for a sudden influx of users.
Even the biggest companies in the world have experienced lousy press related to crashed websites during end-of-year online shopping. Just a few years ago, Walmart and Lowe’s suffered site breakdowns. It doesn’t matter if your site crashes for an hour or a day; you’ll no doubt feel the negative impact of losing momentum.
Run your site through all potential workloads with the understanding that you could be inundated when you least expect it. A surge of viewers could happen at 1 a.m. or 7 p.m.—you never know. So, you must be ready for “go time” before it gets here.
Will this year’s Black Friday break sales records yet again? Time will tell. If you don’t want to miss out, you’ll need to test every page and process on your site. If you can seamlessly guide buyers through their journey, from discovery to checkout, you can leverage this year’s Black Friday to your advantage.