I want to help you build a sustainable, profitable handmade business that makes you consistent income and sales. I only ever teach or recommend marketing, social media, pricing, production and branding tips that I’ve personally used successfully in my own 7-figure handmade businesses.
I'm Mei, from Los Angeles!
starting a business
get more traffic
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selling on etsy
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A few weeks ago, I wrote a post on my Ladder Discount sale that I do every year for Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
I asked if you wanted to see a follow-up post to that where I share with you the results I got from implementing that Ladder Discount sale this year.
And I got a lot of comments saying that you would like that, so this is it!
I’m going to give you a report on how much money I made on my Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales, what worked, and what didn’t.
In a nutshell, it’s a one day only sale that I do once a year, the sale starts at 10am with a huge 35% off discount.
That lasts for two hours, and then the discount gets smaller and smaller as the time passes.
By the time it’s 11:59 pm, right before midnight, that discount is only 5%.
Then on Cyber Monday, I offer $5 off my subscription product, the Necklace of the Month Club for every month a person is subscribed, so it’s not just the first month’s order.
First, let’s talk about how much money I made.
On Black Friday alone, I made $7,836!
This year, I did something a little bit differently, and I’ll explain more on that later, but I extended my Black Friday sale to the next day on Saturday, and I made $1,649 on that day.
Monday is a little bit more complicated because the only thing on sale was my Necklace of the Month Club.
I sold 14 new subscriptions, and I know that my subscribers stay in the Club for an average of 8 months.
At $18.99, with 14 new subscribers, that’s $2,126 over the course of the next 8 months.
I also made regular sales for my other products, so the total revenue for Monday alone was $1,986, and that includes the first order of those 14 new subscribers to my Club.
Now, let’s tally all of that up.
The grand total for sales generated during these three days was $13,331.
That is, I think, the biggest Black Friday Cyber Monday year I’ve had compared to all the other years I’ve done this before.
And I’ve done this for years.
So it just keeps growing and growing every year I do this.
I know of you are wondering about my actual profit, let’s just look at Friday’s numbers as an example.
On Friday, we sold 412 individual products, to make $7,836 in sales.
My cost to make those products, including the materials, supplies, labor, as well as the cost to package each item up for shipping, would cost me $1,648.
Now that’s not counting shipping, which I don’t have to pay out of my own pocket because my customers paid for that.
That’s also not counting sales tax which is about $200.
My profit for Friday was $5,738 if you take sales minus material costs and labor.
I don’t know about you, but I think that’s pretty dang good.
Especially considering that I put in maybe 2 hours of my time tops to make all of this happen.
Don’t forget, I have a team that helps me make products and do the shipping.
My job at this point in my jewelry business is to manage my team members, do marketing and promotion, and make sure the administrative stuff is getting handled.
I do of course lead the ship, and I don’t have a person that creates initiatives, that all rests on me as well.
Now let’s talk about what didn’t work.
I have to tell you, my head was not really in the game to do the most with this Black Friday season.
We have a lot of new students joining my A Sale A Day course, and I’ve been putting a lot of time and energy into making sure we’re giving everyone a really great experience.
Even though I run multiple businesses at once, it’s really hard for me to shift gears from one lane to another.
Especially when it requires some deep work and not just answering someone’s question from my team.
In the last few days, I’ve also been busy helping my husband with his businesses.
He’s getting more orders at a faster pace than his team can fulfill, so he needs the extra pair of hands.
But that means I’m making art in Photoshop for 10-12 hours a day.
There’s also this pressure to ensure that customers get their products on time for Christmas!
It’s really hard for me to change tracks and think about my other projects or businesses. So because of that, I wasn’t as proactive as I would like to be.
I got lazy.
I didn’t innovate my graphics for the pre-promotion for Black Friday.
I just used the same graphics I had from all the previous years before.
I would have liked to have made something different and new, but my consolation is knowing you don’t always have to change something that was working well before.
Another thing I didn’t do on time was to create the Facebook ad.
As you know with this Ladder Discount strategy, it’s super reliant on using your email list as the primary vehicle to push the sale.
In the last few years, I’ve started using paid Facebook ads to help spread the word for my sale.
The reason for this is because, if you can imagine, only 20% of people on your email list actually open your emails.
To me, it feels like such a huge waste that there’s that remaining 80% of people that didn’t see my email.
So I would take my email list and use it to create an audience in Facebook ads.
My ad would be exactly the same content that I have in my email, and the ad would show to all the people on my email list.
This just increases the visibility of my sale.
This year, because this was one more thing to set up, I slacked off and didn’t do it until Friday itself!
Which meant the ad would go live the next day because Facebook takes time to approve your ads.
At that point, it was too late.
So instead of having the ad run on the same day that the sale was happening, I set it up to run on the next day.
And the copy I used was, “Hey, we’re extending our Black Friday sale to Saturday”.
So I had to turn my coupon codes back on for Saturday.
I don’t usually do this.
I believe part of what makes this Ladder Discount sale so effective is the fact that it’s only happening on one day, so there’s a lot of urgency there.
I had set a goal to make $10,000 for the weekend.
When we made $7,000 on Friday, I knew we were short on that goal.
I figured I’ve never tried extending the sale before to Saturday, what harm could it do?
I’m glad I did it, that was one thing that worked!
However, next year, it’s better if I just set up the ad to run on the same day as Black Friday instead.
This Ladder Discount sale is easy to do so that’s why I keep doing the same thing every year.
One thing I want to point out is that on Sunday, I didn’t do anything special.
I didn’t send out any emails, I didn’t have any special ads or discounts for that day.
And on Sunday we only did $716 in sales.
I say “only” because it’s relative compared to the other days.
Compare that with Monday. I made almost triple the number of sales.
Most of it came from regular products and not my subscription product, even though that was what was on sale that day.
I believe this goes back to the concept of, the more you email your list, the more sales you get.
Most shop owners are reluctant to email their list more often.
I get that we’re concerned we’ll annoy people.
That’s only a concern if you send out crappy emails that are irrelevant and that don’t contain value.
Most shop owners don’t email their list often enough!
There wasn’t even an offer that most people cared about on Monday in my email.
But the fact that they got another email from me generated a ton of sales for other products on my website.
That’s the difference between sending an email versus not sending one.
Another thing that’s really cool, and validates everything I know is, email marketing.
Email marketing is the most powerful format compared to all other forms of marketing.
I always harp about getting your website traffic to join your email list, and I will continue to encourage you to do that.
Your email list is like a faucet you can turn on anytime you need to make money.
It’s such a great asset to your business.
I also want you to look at the conversion rates.
A healthy conversion rate for your site is at least 1% during non-holiday months, and it’s usually about double or triple that over the holidays.
On Black Friday, I got a 10% conversion rate, which is unheard of!
That means one out of every ten people who came to my shop bought something from me that day.
Can you imagine that at a craft show?
If one person out of every ten who stop by your booth bought from you?
Now compare that to Saturday, where I was doing the exact same Ladder Discount sale, but this time I only promoted it via a Facebook ad.
I got a 2.9% conversion rate.
That’s still really awesome, but not even close to the conversion rate that email gets.
The moral of the story here, focus on building your email list first, and the sales will follow, provided you send out good emails.
If you’re not sure what emails to send to your list, I have a library inside my A Sale Day course called the Autogamic Email Marketing Vault.
This is where I show you all the emails I send to my list in my jewelry business, so you can either take inspiration from that or copy it if you want.
If you’d like to know how to join A Sale A Day, there’s a link here to join me.
Or you can check out my free workshop where I talk about the course and more great tips to make a living selling!
If you enjoyed this post or have your own Black Friday success to share, leave a comment below.
Don’t forget to check out my YouTube Channel for more tips and secrets.
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This workshop is for anyone who makes and sells a handmade or physical product, including jewelry designers, artists, paper designers, bath & body product makers and more!
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