A Guide to Black Friday Marketing Strategies for Mobile Apps

Black Friday remains one of the best holidays for businesses, with plenty of opportunities to promote their products and services and boost sales. The same goes for mobile app developers, who can promote their apps in creative ways while encouraging more downloads and in-app purchases. 

Advertising in the days leading up to and on Black Friday is crucial if you want to remain competitive. In 2020, digital advertisers spend as much as two to three times the daily November average on Black Friday advertising. In addition, mobile spending accounted for the bulk of paid search advertising.

In short, if you don’t develop an effective Black Friday strategy for your mobile app, you’ll likely fall behind as the competition gains the upper hand. If you want to learn more about how to engage in Black Friday promotions and advertise your app during this crucial period, the following is a comprehensive guide to Black Friday marketing for mobile apps. 

How to Prepare Your App’s Black Friday Marketing Strategy

 When just beginning your Black Friday marketing strategy, there are some steps to take that will help you get the most from these campaigns. A few of these key considerations include:

Specific Goals and Corresponding KPIs

Prior to developing any marketing strategy, think about what you want to achieve with it. What is the ultimate end goal? Do you want to drive downloads and installs, or do you want to increase in-app revenue? Based on what your goals are, you can identify the specific metrics that help you measure your campaigns’ success. For example, you might track installs if you want to encourage an increase in users. Meanwhile, you may want to track return on ad spend (ROAS) to determine if your Black Friday advertising is actually profitable.

Focus More on App Store Optimization

Even if your advertising is effective, poor app store optimization (ASO) could be your downfall. Prior to downloading and installing your app, people will always wind up landing on your app store page, which is why it’s crucial to have it looking its best before launching your Black Friday marketing strategies. Take some time to work on your app store page’s descriptions, promotional text, images, and other elements to entice people to hit that final “Install” button.

Expect to Pay More for Advertising

Whenever a big holiday comes along, you should anticipate increased ad spending. This is why it’s necessary to set aside a specific budget for your campaigns in advance. People will also bid more on ads, so you can expect to see an increase in your cost per click (CPC), cost per install (CPI), and cost per tap (CPT) around this time. As the holiday approaches you can adjust ad spending accordingly to optimize both campaign performance and ROAS.

Steps for Approaching Black Friday Marketing

With the three aspects above in mind, you can begin approaching your Black Friday marketing campaigns. When putting together your next strategy, there are some steps you should take to drive results and fully optimize your efforts.

Spend More on Retargeting

In addition to initial ads, try to invest more in retargeting Black Friday advertising, which will bring more people back to you. The fact is that the average click-through rate (CTR) for retargeting ads is 0.7%, whereas the CTR for display ads is 0.07%. That’s 10 times higher, making retargeting a vital component of any marketing strategy. Keep in mind that a higher CTR rate is likely to translate to increased conversions, as more people wind up visiting your website and app store pages. 

Improve Your Site’s Loading Speed and Design if Needed

Many users are impatient when it comes to slow website loading speeds. If a page takes more than a few seconds to load, visitors are likely to abandon it in favor of a faster competitor. Your website, like your ads, will be critical in getting people to download and install your app, so you need to ensure that it loads fast enough to keep visitors engaged once they click through an ad. 

In addition to fast loading speeds, visitors also want to use a website that’s consistently appealing and easy to navigate. In anticipation of the holiday season, give your website a second look and determine if users can find what they need and whether the website’s design is appealing. Additionally, your website’s design should match that of your app, so you may want to incorporate a Black Friday or general holiday theme across your platforms. 

Offer Deals Early on During Black Friday Promotions

 One of the best ways to show that you value your current customers is to offer them early access to any deals you’re offering. Early access deals will enable your current customers to purchase inventory that’s likely to become unavailable. At the same time, you’ll be able to boost traffic for those existing customers early on, which may alleviate the surge you expect from new prospects and users later on during the holidays. 

Launch Push Notifications

In offering Black Friday deals to existing users, use push notifications to reach them. Although this will only reach people who have push notifications switched on for your app, marketing through this channel could still significantly boost sales and traffic. Many people are likely to revisit an app if they see relevant push notifications, and offering appealing deals or other offers could be the key to bringing people back who might otherwise forget about your app.

Build Strong Email Marketing Campaigns

Another effective means of reaching people via Black Friday marketing is through email. This channel is cost-effective to use and can yield great results when used the right way. First, generate a solid list of email subscribers by offering deals or even freebies in exchange for entering contact information on your website. You can then send occasional emails promoting specific deals or other rewards, which could continue bringing people back to your app. 

However, keep in mind that you need to avoid sending too many emails to recipients. If you send too many too frequently, you may wind up deterring people rather than attracting them to your app. Remember, try to segment your audiences and send emails that are relevant to each segment. If people feel like you’re speaking more directly to them, they’ll be far more receptive to your efforts. 

Understand the Sales Funnel

Having a good understanding of the journey that customers travel from the top to the bottom of the sales funnel will help you gauge its efficiency. Identify any potential bottlenecks that are keeping people from converting, whether it’s a poorly developed landing page at the top of the funnel or an inadequate app store page at the end. If you can figure out what’s keeping people from converting after implementing your Black Friday marketing efforts, you can make the necessary changes to streamline the customer journey. In turn, you’ll be able to further drive engagement, installs, and sales.

Black Friday Promotion Ideas for Mobile Apps

Depending on how you want to approach Black Friday app promotion, there are a few different ways you can go about offering deals to new and existing users, such as: 

Promo Codes

People love promo codes around the holidays and often eagerly await them if they’re used to seeing them from developers. These promo codes could apply to paid apps, including tools and subscriptions. They could also count toward certain in-app purchases for mobile games and others that involve various in-app transactions. You can send these to people in your email lists, which could be critical in getting them to revisit your app or download and install it for the first time.


For many mobile apps, particularly shopping apps, freebies are great for attracting new and returning users. People enjoy free items, even if they need to purchase others to receive them. Consider offering certain free giveaways in your apps, as this may help further boost traffic and sales. 

In-App Rewards

You can also reward users through certain in-app benefits and bonuses. For example, you can give players of a mobile game more in-game currency during the holiday season, or you can give users more rewards points for purchases made through your app. This will help lure new and repeat users to your app and encourage them to continue using it if it means more rewards in the future.

Supercharge Your Black Friday Marketing This Holiday Season

By following these and other Black Friday marketing tips, your mobile app will be able to thrive this holiday season. While you may have an idea of the direction you want to go, you need the right tools to get you there. Having the best available tools behind your app could mean the difference between success and failure.

To help you achieve your goals leading up to Black Friday and the rest of the holiday season, consider using App Samurai, which is a mobile growth platform that can give you everything you need to effectively market your app. For more information about App Samurai and its many capabilities, contact us today.

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