Today’s post is written by Guest Author, Mike Ryan – Head of Retail Insights at Smarter Ecommerce. It is also the final installment to our August series on Q4 PPC planning. Thanks for tagging along this month!

Black Friday has transformed from a quirk of American brick-and-mortar retail into a global omni-channel phenomenon. For merchants in most B2C verticals, it’s a promotional period that can make or break the year, and where success is therefore imperative.

As online shopping has captured increasingly large shares of retail revenue, the holiday has changed – extended over the weekend to include Cyber Monday, and also seeing weeks of promotion before the date itself. This change was accelerated in 2020 as many consumers said “no thanks” to in-store experiences, as Shippageddon strained supply chains, and also as Amazon shifted Prime Day to an October slot just weeks before Black Friday. It was a heck of a year.

What will 2021 hold for large eCommerce businesses? Let’s discuss that by way of key strategic focal points within the intersection of operations and marketing. In a nutshell, businesses that take an integrated and end-to-end approach to their Q4 offering will outpace those who do not.

If you haven’t begun preparing for Black Friday/Cyber Monday (BFCM) by late August, it’s not a cause for panic, but now is the time to start. In years past, when BFCM was primarily an offline retail event, the traditional tactic was to bottle up demand into…

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