The best way of launching a new product is by using preorder sales. Many reasons support this marketing strategy, including the ability to generate excitement and word of mouth for your product, and even determine the market demand. Besides, it’s also possible to use the funds that you gather during this time to pay for future marketing campaigns.
One of the places that a preorder strategy has been the most successful is in the gaming world. When companies come out with a new console or game, they spend a lot of time and money to get players interested and excited about what they have to offer. However, this isn’t the only industry where this strategy is essential, as it can help with a variety of different products.
How Do Preorder Sales Work?
In essence, a preorder is when a company offers customers a product that’s not yet manufactured or on sale. They put the physical or digital product on their site and accept either a deposit or the full amount, and then ship the item on its release date.
Many customers enjoy taking part in preorder sales for a variety of reasons. This first is because they want the product, but they don’t want to risk not being able to get it because it sells out. When preordering, customers have a guarantee that they will get what they want. The other reason is that a lot of people like to be first to own new products. They want to be trailblazers and pioneers, and this allows them to achieve that goal.
How Does a Business Know When to Offer Preorders?
With all the hype and sales that a preorder strategy can create, it seems like every product should be incorporating this technique. However, it doesn’t work for everything. If you tried to use this for every new product, you would probably see a decrease in interest for preorders.
Also, it takes a lot of time and effort to put this type of campaign together, and you’ll have to invest funds for the extensive marketing campaign. If your product isn’t something that a lot of people are interested in, you won’t see a return on your investment. Thus, it’s a good idea to use this strategy when you know you have a product that many want and are anxious to buy.
Some of the products that do well using this strategy include the following:
- Limited edition products, including Christmas or special editions
- New flagship products for your company
- New businesses just launching into the market
- Special discounts or promotions on an already-existing product
How Long Should Pre-Order Sales Run?
The length of preorder sales will depend on a variety of factors, including the product you are offering and how in-demand it is. If your product is in high demand, even if you plan on running the pre-sale for a week, you may find that you sell out in a few hours. Conversely, you could have a product that you plan on having on sale for a day, and it may not sell out at all.
The question you should be asking isn’t how long the pre-sale should last, but what you will be doing up until that date to get people interested in what you have to offer. The pre-sale will be the culmination of your marketing efforts. What you do before that date will determine how successful you are in your endeavor.
How to Build Your Preorder Strategy
If you want to make sure the preorder of your product is successful, you have to dedicate the time and effort to develop a strategy. You can’t put together marketing plans a few days or even a few weeks before you offer your product to the public. It can take months—if not longer. Below are some ways to ensure your strategy is a success.
1. Have a Dedicated Team
You’ve already invested a lot into your business, and if you want to succeed and see your sales soar, then you need to put that same dedication into developing a strategy for pre-sales. Not only do you need a team that is willing to put in the time and effort, but you have to have the budget as well.
Everyone within the company should be part of this strategy, not just the marketing team. Employees in customer service, IT, and sales should be willing to do what it takes to makes the pre-sale a success. Keep everyone informed about the plan by having update meetings and make sure you involve everyone in the planning and execution of the pre-sale.
2. Create a Preorder Timeline
To ensure that you sell your product during the preorder sale, you need to create a preorder timeline to get customers informed and excited about what you have to offer. In general, this occurs 4 to 6 months before your scheduled sales date. Thus, you’ll need to decide how you are going to spend those months letting people know about your product.
There is a life-cycle that occurs during this campaign period, and there will be highs and lows of interest. If you have done your job right, then you should see the vast majority of your sales take place on the first day of preorder.
However, you will find that during the 7 to 10 days before this date, there will be a dip in interest, often called “dead zones.” You know there will be waxing and waning interest, so you need to create a timeline and schedule to keep people excited about your product. Below, you’ll find some of the things you’ll need to consider:
- When will you announce that preorders are?
In general, we recommend making this announcement 4 to 6 months before your preorder date. However, this can vary depending on your business, when the product will be ready, and your launch budget.
- What will you do to reach the most customers possible to build hype before you take preorders?
You have a variety of options available to announce your product and preorder, including press releases, sending out emails, creating a video, or putting an announcement on social media, among others. Consider all of these for your target customers.
- What marketing campaigns and PR strategies will you use to highlight preorder spikes in the months and weeks leading up to the preorder date?
Like your announcement, you have a lot of options to address this. You can send your product out to influencers and have them test it out, or you can create sneak peeks every week that show progress. You can also send out social media or email announcements to keep people interested.
- What will you do about the “dead zones”?
One of the best ways to deal with dead zones is to create more content and hype. You can use dead zones to reach out to customers and bloggers and have them review your products, creating more buzz and keeping your product in the limelight.
3. Give Customers a Reason to Pre-Order
While there may be a few people in this world who enjoy preordering because they want to be the first to buy a product, others need some convincing. To accomplish this goal, you might consider including a gift with their preorder purchase or offering discounts on future purchases as a way to entice them. You also have the option of bundling your new product with existing products to increase the value of the preorder.
Any of these options can work to encourage people to buy your product during the preorder, but you might also consider limiting the number of preorders you are willing to take. By creating scarcity, you appeal to a person’s fear of missing out. Limiting your stock is an excellent way to encourage people to buy ahead of time and boost your sales during the preorder period.
4. Develop a Marketing Campaign that Creates Awareness
The best way to ensure that your preorder is going to be successful is by letting people know you are having a preorder and about your product. While advertising can be expensive, it’s imperative to get people informed and wanting to buy what you have to offer.
When it comes to crafting a marketing campaign that creates awareness, you have a lot of options. You can go the traditional route and advertise in print publications, on the radio or TV. You can also use digital strategies to your advantage and post on social media or use Facebook and Google ads.
It’s also a good idea to let your current customer base know what’s going on, and sending out emails can help with this endeavor. You might even call upon your customer base to share your ads or posts by offering incentives, including gifts and/or discounts. You can also partner with influencers to let people know about your product.
Using all of these strategies might be the best way to get people interested in your product and make them aware of your pre-sale. However, which strategies you use will also depend on your marketing budget and industry. Taking the time to put a plan together is imperative, so figure out the best marketing strategy for your business with the team.
5. Be Ready for a Surge in Traffic and Orders
If your plan has been a success, then you can expect more people to visit your website and place orders, and you need to be ready. There’s nothing more frustrating than trying to order a product only to have the site crash. You need to take the time to ensure that your IT department has optimized your site to handle whatever comes along.
Work With a Professional
Now more than ever, it’s crucial to use pre-sales to launch a new product. This strategy takes a lot of effort and planning, and it cannot be put together in a few days or weeks. You don’t have to go this alone, and many marketing professionals can help with this endeavor.
We at Bright Plugins understand the importance of a successful strategy for preorders. Try out our WooCommerce Preorder Plugin today.