Full Guide to A High ROI Black Friday

Dive into this detailed and value-packed guide to a successful Black Friday this year produced by Vagabond Digital.


Use the 2023 Black Friday Predictor by Jack Felstead

Utilise predictive tools and scripts that forecast consumer behaviour and sales trends for Black Friday 2023. This script provides your business with a guide to what Google Ads campaigns have historically been effective for Black Friday. Use this data to adjust your current campaigns for better targeting and higher ROI.


Highlight a Strong Black Friday Offer and Drive Traffic

Craft compelling Meta advertisements that emphasize time-sensitive offers for Black Friday. Often, paid social ads are hampered by shorter attention spans. Make your Meta ads irresistible by offering exclusive discounts and fast-action bonuses.


Use Time-Sensitive Messaging to Drive Action

Employ countdown timers, urgent language, and limited-time offers in your ads and website to create a sense of urgency, encouraging potential customers to take action immediately rather than postpone their buying decisions.


Offer Timing is Key

Plan your promotional calendar strategically to align with consumer buying patterns. Whether it's a week-long event or just for the day, make sure your offers coincide with when your audience is most active.


Media Spend

Allocate your budget effectively across different channels, focusing on those that offer the best ROI. Analyse previous campaigns to determine where your advertising dollars are best spent, opting for a mix of PPC, organic social, and influencer marketing.


Competitor Analysis

Monitor your competitors' campaigns closely and adapt your strategies accordingly. It's important to understand what your competitors are offering so you can differentiate your own promotions and offers.


Automated Rules

Use automated rules in your PPC campaigns to increase efficiency. Set up rules to automatically adjust bids, pause low-performing ads, or scale budgets based on performance metrics.


Set Up Campaigns, Audiences, Ads in Advance

Don't leave anything to the last minute; preparation is key. Prepare for the big day/week/month and iron out all the kinks in your campaigns well in advance


Account Quality Check

Ensure that your accounts, ad copies, and audience inclusions/exclusions are in top shape to avoid having rejected ads and audience inclusions/exclusions that don't align with your campaign goals.


Name Your Sale Black Friday

Stick to the terminology people are familiar with; don't try to reinvent Black Friday. Using the term "Black Friday" is essential as it's what people are searching form.


Have Someone Else Check Your Work

A second pair of eyes can catch mistakes you might have overlooked. It's easy to make a mistake, especially during the hustle and bustle of the holiday season. Always have someone else review your campaigns.


Leverage Influencer Partnerships

Collaborate with influencers who align with your brand to reach a wider, yet targeted, audience. Influencers can provide authentic testimonials or showcase your products in a way that resonates with their followers, thus driving more engagement and sales.


Use Creative Visuals

Incorporate high-quality images, videos, and other creative elements into your campaigns to make your campaign stand out, especially in cluttered social media feeds.


Optimise for Mobile

With the increasing use of smartphones, a mobile-optimised experience is crucial for capturing more conversions. Make sure all your advertising materials and landing pages are mobile-friendly.


Utilise Email Marketing

Leverage your email list to send out targeted promotions and offers. Personalise the emails to increase engagement and use A/B testing to optimize open and click-through rates.


Test, Test and Test Again!

Continuously test different elements of your ads, such as headlines, images, and CTA buttons, across various channels to determine what resonates most with your audience and adjust your campaigns accordingly.


Utilise Retargeting Strategies

Don’t forget the customers who have visited your site but didn’t make a purchase. Use retargeting ads to remind them of the products they viewed and the special Black Friday deals available.


Tease promotions and start your campaigns early

Share sneak peeks and teasers of your exclusive deals before the promotions are set to go live, to stir excitement and anticipation amongst your audience. Don’t forget to adjust your strategy with the copy of your social media posts (don’t skimp on emojis and hashtags) to create a buzz and urgency around the offers available too.


Explore the world of TikTok Shop

Known for being the go-to app right now for crazily good deals and discounts, be sure to take advantage of the expanded reach and visibility available for your brand thanks to TikTok Shop’s seamless shopping experience that is loved by many. No matter the size of your following, you have the potential to reach millions of users!


Schedule in advance

Make sure to plan out and execute content ideas in advance so they can be scheduled in social media calendars. This will allow you to keep on top of your priorities as Black Friday gets closer. A social media scheduling tool is a must!


Take preventative measures with customer service

You’ll save both your social media and customer service teams an incredible amount of time if you make sure to add notes or disclaimers to content captions letting people know when promotions will end if the details aren’t already included in the creative. On the same note, make sure to have your customer service team at the ready to respond to inevitable queries.


Utilise unique platform features

Use the collaborator tool on Instagram feed posts which enables you to joint-post with creators in your influencer campaigns to boost your audience engagement and maximise your visibility. Be playful with your Black Friday content and make use of  Instagram’s carousel post feature to unveil offers in a more interactive format.


Vagabond Digital were hired to grow the MuscleSquad Paid Search, Shopping and Paid Social offerings.
Muscle Squad
Paid Search, Shopping & Paid Social

The Process Behind Our Results

MuscleSquad launched in 2017 and is a 5* rated sports and fitness equipment retailer in the UK. After the initial launch period, the business experienced exponential growth during the pandemic/lockdown periods as consumers looked for new ways to keep fit whilst at home.

adings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.The challenge for MuscleSquad was how to maintain the momentum they had gained, whilst still achieving growth YoY. With the lockdowns lifted and restrictions on gyms no longer in place, the business needed support on how to find other ways to drive performance with the reduced volume of online searches. They felt they still had a relatively low customer awareness and market share. They also felt like they’d gone from delivering a consistent ROAS to it being very sporadic. 
Vagabond Digital were hired to grow the MuscleSquad Paid Search, Shopping and Paid Social offerings.

Initially, audits were conducted across all of the existing accounts and campaigns and we found that a number of fundamental issues across the account:

  • GTINs missing for all products
  • Little/no feed optimisation with many key attributes missing from product titles
  • Customer reviews not used in channel activity
  • Account structure not in line with best practises
  • Campaign setups not aligning with best practises, so ad quality was low
  • High coverage on low value products with not enough focus on high ticket items
  • GA setup was incorrect, therefore not tracking all channels correctly rendering it not usable for optimisations and day to day account management.

How we helped:

  • Full feed optimisation, ensuring all product titles, descriptions, categories and product types align with Google Best Practises
  • Applied all EANs relevant across feed
  • Account restructured to segment all products by category type to ensure the right categories were getting the right coverage/spend allocation
  • Additional assets added into all campaigns to reach “Excellent” ranking for ads
  • Audience signals were setup on a hyper-specific basis around categories and previous interactions with the brand/products. These were also revised ongoing based on what search queries we’d see performing within the campaigns
  • Fixed GA tracking issues. We then used this data to help inform weekly optimisations and account changes. 
  • Increased Search campaigns ROAS by 54% YoY (May-Dec vs PY)
  • Delivered a stronger YoY Black Friday/Cyber Period, with reduced spend but 33% increase in revenue across the channels and 54% increase on new users.
  • Implemented new format Performance Max campaigns across the product categories to maximise sales performance.

The metrics matter

Increased Search campaigns ROAS by 54% YoY (May-Dec vs PY)
Delivered a stronger YoY Black Friday/Cyber Period, with reduced spend but 33% increase in revenue across the channels and 54% increase on new users. 

Add Urgency to Calls-to-Action

Use phraseology that promotes urgency in your calls-to-action (CTAs)—like "Hurry, limited stock," or "Offer ends soon." This encourages quicker decision making from your visitors and increases conversion rates.


Create a Specific BF Landing Page

Make a landing page that highlights top deals, bundles, or trending items for Black Friday. This reduces information overload and helps visitors navigate your site more efficiently, leading to quicker conversions.


Mobile Optimization

Everyone is shopping on their phones these days. Make sure your site looks just as good and functions flawlessly on mobile by ensuring responsive design, easy navigation, and text readability.


Promote Scarcity

Display limited quantity or stock levels. Scarcity encourages quicker buying decisions as no one likes to miss out on a good deal.


Start Early

There is no need to wait until Black Friday starts to smash your revenue goals. Set up an early black friday sale weeks prior and ease consumers into the wild weekend.

ready to grow?
let's get started

We're all about forging partnerships that spur growth, innovation, and success. Together, we can chart a course to your digital marketing goals that's uniquely tailored for your brand.