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And that’s a wrap… Black Friday for 2021 is done and dusted, although there are a few still running extended sales running as always!

With the world still doing odd things, this was an interesting one for a lot of brands. Here is my summary of the sale and what I think brands can learn for future Black Friday’s and sales in general.

Not having a sale

Honestly, this was one of my favourites. Going on sale is a big deal, and not always done for the best of reasons. I saw many businesses decide to not have a sale, I saw them give money back to charities instead and some who just pretended it was any other weekend.

I love this because it does differentiate you – and at the end of the day if you build a great brand that doesn’t discount – people don’t expect a discount. I also love that brands are standing by their values around ethical consumption and giving back – or not succumbing to the pressures to have a sale when it doesn’t work for you business.

Know your margins

If you are going to go on sale it’s SO important to know your margins. I’ve spoken to too many businesses over the years who run sales without knowing their margins. You have to know how much your products cost you – this includes rent, electricity, marketing expenses, postage, absolutely everything that it costs you to sell your product. It’s not just the cost of goods to make. 

Once you know your margins, then you can work out how much to discount your product. Sales are there to make you money – if you don’t know your margins, you don’t know how much you can afford to give away. No one wants to lose money.

Extending sales!

Lots of people were flustered this year when businesses went on sale a week (or I even saw someone run theirs two weeks) early! Know in advance that many businesses don’t run their sale just the Friday – Monday.  

Decide in advance when you want to run your sale, and don’t try and make last minute changes just because of what everyone else is doing. 

We however, love extending a sale if it’s working well – several of our clients extended their Black Friday sales by 2-3 days as the returns were so good – but we knew their margins.

VIP Access

Another great strategy is to run VIP Access – everyone knows costs creep up as more advertisers pump dollars into ads during this time of year. A fantastic way to avoid this is to drive email sign ups. You spend the fortnight or month prior promoting the sale only being sent to email subscribers.

You get new email subscribers and you don’t have to pay as much for ads during the big days! 

This works especially well for smaller businesses and smaller margins where you just can’t compete with the big guns.

Big Black Flashy Graphics

I mean it’s called Black Friday – but I think too many brands take this too literally. So many posts were big black squares with the word sale on them.

You have to remember the placement and context of your ads – you’re in competition with literally every other brand and post in a feed. My feed was basically just black flashy squares… it got to the point were I was just scrolling past them.

Yes, you’re having a Black Friday sale – but so are most brands. The big things that matter are the amount of the discount and what you sell! Showcase your product in use, make it easy to see what is on sale so you grab their attention immediately.

Match your online and offline sales

This is more of a pet peeve – but make sure your online sales and instore sales match. There is nothing worse as a consumer than getting emails saying your product is on sale and then going instore to buy it and it’s not discounted.


Obviously if you wholesale, this is out of your control, but for those with brick and mortar stores – don’t make life harder for your customers.

Getting ready for 2022


It’s way too early to be getting ready for the 2022 Black Friday sales, but there are a thousand sales between now and then – here’s looking at you Boxing Day!


Make sure you know your margins, don’t go on sale just because everyone else is, and do what works best for your business! Sales are a great way to encourage purchases but it has to be what’s best for your business – don’t compare with everyone else!

Want a hand getting your ads ready for 2022? Book in a chat and we can see where your ads are at!

Dahna Borg

Author Dahna Borg

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