Ecommerce Stores: Dominate Black Friday with the Big Wave Email Strategy

Unless you have your head in the sand, there’s no doubt you and your team are already thinking ahead to Black Friday weekend.

The type of sales you’re going to run.

The ad campaigns you’ll be putting out ahead of time to build interest.

The emails you’re going to send to your list.

However, there’s something about it probably feels… well… tired. Flat. The “same old, same old.” Nothing new under the sun.

And the truth is, your customers probably feel that way too. They’re expecting the same “me too” email that every other ecommerce brand sends out. And over time you start to fade back into the noise.


What if this year was different?

What if this year you and your team blew it out of the water? I’m talking clear the warehouse and put your fulfillment staff on overtime blowout.

What if you had your biggest Black Friday ever?

If you’re up to the task, then our BFCM Big Wave Strategy can be your secret weapon this November.

As the before/afters with our clients have shown, done right, you can potentially make as much email revenue in a week as you usually make in a month.

It’s extremely profitable revenue too because you already have an email list and past customers.

You don't have to waste money on an oversaturated holiday ad spend.

Using this strategy, we helped an ecommerce store make $414,201 from email in 7 days.

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It didn't happen by accident. 

It didn't happen by chance or luck.

It happened by using our proven process we call "The Big Wave" method.

This strategy works all year long, but it's extra powerful on Black Friday weekend.

Keep reading to learn exactly step-by-step how we crush sales promotions for our 7 and 8-figure ecommerce clients using email.

Don't make this mistake...

99% of ecommerce stores are leaving money on the table when it comes to their email marketing.

They have no real email strategy (even though they think they do).

The sad truth is that most stores are simply spraying and praying that something will stick and generate revenue.

They send discount emails here and there, along with some other random emails.

They basically send whatever comes to mind that day.

They might be sending emails consistently, but there's not much thought to what's being sent out.

Or worse, they're not sending email campaigns consistently at all.

When you "wing it", you limit your results drastically and you leave a ton of money on the table. 

Money that's already in your business. 

You already have an email list and past customers. You don't need to spend more on ads.

Not to mention that by "winging it" you can end up doing more harm than good. 

You have to be very careful about how you treat your list because it will have a longterm impact.

If you send bad emails or the same offers over and over again, they'll convert less and less until they stop working completely.

Sending too much? Be careful! Your list will experience burnout. Don't ruin your list by doing this wrong.

Sending too little? Your email list will soon forget about you. 

The last thing you want to do is kill your list by sending too much or too little or sending bad emails. 

You already paid good money to get those people on your list.

Every week I'm on calls with brands and they all say something very similar like "We have a really big list with hundreds of thousands of people on it, but none of them open our emails."

That's money flushed down the drain.

That's because they didn't take the right approach. 

Don’t make the same mistake.

Follow The Big Wave Method I’m about to share with you instead.

The Big Wave Method can double your revenue when done right.

The Big Wave method is extremely powerful.

Like I shared earlier, we helped a client generate over $400k in 1 week using it back in May.

So just imagine how powerful this strategy will be on Black Friday weekend.

And the results don't just stop there. 

For one of our clients, we implemented the Big Wave Method in Q4 and their total revenue doubled. 

They went from $60k/month in total sales to $150k/month in sales.

Then after Q4 in the start of the new year something crazy happened.

Their sales didn't dip like most stores. 

They actually stayed at November and December sales levels.

The business owners were ecstatic. They told me, "Now that we're making more money on the backend with email, we can spend more on the frontend."

As a result, their business more than doubled and has continued to grow since then.

Not only did their revenue grow, but they also have an engaged list they can rely on. 

One of the best parts of this strategy is that it works with ecommerce businesses of all sizes.

And the bigger your store and email list, the more money you'll make.

If run an ecommerce store doing over $2 million per year, you need the Big Wave Method.

Without it, you are leaving 6-7 figures on the table every year.

Step 1) Warm Up Your Email List

Like I said before, most ecommerce brands send email campaigns with no rhyme or reason to them.

Random discount emails. 

Random blog posts. 

Random product launches. 

It's very random and it brings a lot of the success down to luck.

It's spraying and praying. 

Sending and desperately hoping people will convert.

To really crush it on Black Friday, you need to take a step back and start to think about why and how people actually buy.

There are reasons people buy and reasons they don't.

You don't want to randomly blast a huge discount out to your list.

Price is just one reason that people don't buy.

There are many other reasons people don't buy as well.

Maybe they don't trust you.

Maybe they're afraid your product won't work or won't fit right.

Most stores make the mistake of giving out a discount right away.

But not everyone needs a discount to buy. 

Sometimes you simply need to take people's objections off the table and then they'll buy.

So for your BFCM email campaign strategy, you actually want to start months in advance and work backwards from your big sale promotion.

This is HUGE. Nobody is doing this.

Start warming up your email list as soon as possible.

If you only email on Black Friday weekend and haven't been nurturing your audience, you're going to leave a ton of money on the table and risk making your list upset.

Before Q4, you want your email list to be engaged.

You want your audience to be trained to open, click, and buy.

You do this by sending great content.

Send emails that address top objections, answer FAQs, and expose your product catalogue.

This is a great example of how to bust objections by Reebok. The headline is bad, but take notes on how they answer FAQs in the body text.

This is a great example of how to bust objections by Reebok. The headline is bad, but take notes on how they answer FAQs in the body text.

By the time November and December rolls around, you'll crush.

Your email list will be nice and warmed up.

People will no longer have objections because you answered all their questions and doubts leading up to the sale.

Your offer will make it a no brainer for them to convert and you'll get a ton of sales.

How to warm up your list for BFCM (with timeline and examples)

Start emailing your list as soon as possible.

Start by sending to the most engaged people on your email list and sending emails packed with value to get your engagement up (opens and clicks).

Once October hits, start addressing top objections and FAQs.

If you're a fashion brand, you can start by addressing common objections like sizing and returns. 

If you're a supplement brand, you can start by showcasing lots of reviews that target your FAQs.

Come November, people are starting to get their wallets out and they already trust you and have very little objections.

In the beginning of November, you'll want to start being more direct with your emails going for the sale.

If you have a lot of SKUs, now is the time to show them to your customers.

People have very short attention spans and very few people will sort through your entire website to find everything you offer.

Email is a great way to show them.

The week of Black Friday, it's time to pull the final lever and unleash your best sale of the year.

At this point, don't be afraid to go hard with email.

There's going to be lots of competition in the inbox, so you'll want to make sure you're sending daily over BFCM weekend, if not a few times per day.

If you're in an extra competitive niche, you can even launch earlier in the week of Black Friday to beat your competition to the punch.

Step 2) The Best Black Friday Discount

Now that you have the gist of the Big Wave Method, it's time to determine your killer offer.

A discount that you come up with last minute isn't going to cut it.

Your competition has been planning for months.

You can't just slap a discount code on an email and hope for the best.

You really have to plan in advance and come up with the best offer you possibly can.

This is your biggest opportunity of the year. Don't waste it.

Start strategizing your offer now.

Brainstorm 3-5 ideas for discount offers and make sure they're all great.

Your BFCM offer should be your best promotion of the entire year.

After you brainstorm a few ideas, sit on them for a bit, then come back to them and pick the best one.

It doesn't have to be HUGE, but it should be bigger than normal.

Think of an offer that worked well in the past and then kick it up a notch to make it even more irresistible.

If you normally give 10% off, give 15% or 20% off.

If you normally give 20% off, give 25% or 30% off.

Step 3) The Best Black Friday Email Sequence

Don't wait until the last minute.

And don't just send one email.

During Black Friday and Cyber Monday weekend, there's going to be lots of competition in the inbox.

This is what your customers’ inbox looks like on Black Friday.

This is what your customers’ inbox looks like on Black Friday.

At minimum, you should email your list daily during BFCM weekend (if not more) to stay on top of the inbox.

Work hard on the emails. You're competing with tons of other brands. 

Make sure your design and copy are top notch too.

Here's an example of a great email sequence you can copy for BFCM weekend:

  • Sale Teaser Email

    • Tease the sale and get people excited about what's coming

    • Send this email a few days before your sale launches

  • Sale Announcement Email

    • Send this email the morning of the beginning of your sale

  • Sale Reminder Emails

    • Remind people about your great offer and sale end date

    • Create a few variations of this email to constantly remind people during the weekend (you should be emailing at least once per day of BFCM weekend)

  • Sale Last Day Email

    • Send this email in the morning on the last day of your sale to let people know it's their last day to save

  • Sale Ending Email

    • Send this email in the evening on the last day of your sale with a clear time limit (for example: "ends in 4 hours")

  • Sale Extended Email

    • If the sale went well, extend the sale for 24-48 hours to get some extra sales

    • Send this email the morning after the sale originally ended

  • Sale Closing Permanently Email

    • Let people know this is their final chance to get in on your best day of the year 24-48 hours after your last email (however long you decide the extension to be)

Great example of a Cyber Monday email sequence from Loft. (credit:  Litmus )

Great example of a Cyber Monday email sequence from Loft. (credit: Litmus)

Email Campaign Strategy Pro Tips:

  • Launch your sale before Thanksgiving to beat your competition.

  • Segment your email list so that you're not emailing people who have made a purchase in the last 2 weeks (you don't want to make anyone mad).

Step 4) Bonus Strategy That Will Put Your Black Friday Campaigns On Steroids

Want to take things to the next level?

Update your automated emails to match the sale promotion.

Update your abandoned cart, browse abandonment, email capture and welcome emails with the same BFCM offer.

That'll take this entire strategy and put it on steroids. 

When people add to cart and don't buy during your BFCM sale, they'll get an abandoned cart email reminder specifically about that sale with the exact offer and deadline.

Mention a specific deadline (i.e. “ends November 31st” instead of “ends soon”) and add a countdown timer to increase urgency and drive even more sales.

Mention a specific deadline (i.e. “ends November 31st” instead of “ends soon”) and add a countdown timer to increase urgency and drive even more sales.

These extremely targeted emails convert like crazy.

Step 5) Your First Action Item

You just read through a TON of information.

I want to make it easy for you to get started with this strategy, so I turned this article into a free step-by-step checklist.

Download it and you can just copy/paste it right into your todo list.

>> Click here to download your free Black Friday email checklist now.

It’s that simple!


About the Author


Dylan Kelley is the Founder & CEO of Wavebreak, a leading ecommerce email marketing agency.

Top brands hire Wavebreak to maximize their email revenue.

He's also the host of the popular Wavebreak Podcast sponsored by Klaviyo where he interviews the people behind leading ecommerce brands like Parachute, Oliver Cabell, 100% PURE, and more.

Dylan Kelley