Unveiling the Flash Sale: Elevate Your eCommerce Sales with Strategic Advertising

by Manas Chowdhury
11 minutes read

Deals of all kinds have long been a crucial component of online retail strategies. One such offer is the flash sale, a tried-and-true inducer of impulsive purchases. 

According to a study published in Cogent Business & Management, these sales improve customers’ excitement and enjoyment. When consumers purchase an item that will soon be out of stock for others, they believe they have struck gold. These emotions prompt individuals to make a purchase right away. 

Flash sales can boost your online stores’ purchase rates by an average of 35% thanks to their significant influence on consumer behavior. But only if you intelligently integrate them into your plan. So, in this post, we emphasize the advantages and disadvantages of flash sales, offer the best advice for using this kind of sale, and provide illustrations for motivation.

Flash Sale: Definition and Meaning

Customers have a limited amount of time to take advantage of a great price during a flash sale. Such sales frequently continue up to two days and provide discounts of 50–80%. 

Even the most reluctant buyers will think about making an immediate purchase when presented with this obvious benefit and a short deadline. They are aware that they cannot come back to this offer at a later time, therefore they must move right away to beat other committed buyers. 

The Most Important Advantages of Online Flash Sales for Your eCommerce Business

Customers benefit from flash sales in the most obvious way: they get a one-of-a-kind opportunity to purchase the desired item for a much lower price. However, cutting prices by half or more on eCommerce platforms is not the only reason customers enjoy a great deal on a purchase.

1. Increased Sales Assurance

When a firm offers a decent discount, two-thirds of online shoppers make an impulsive buy, and an amazing 81% of them think that obtaining the best deal is a desired goal for their shopping journey.

2. Motivator to Buy Now

Customers’ enthusiasm and enjoyment are affected by flash sales as a limited-time deal, but also their fear of missing out (FOMO). 60% of internet buyers acknowledge that FOMO drives them to make a purchase as soon as they notice an offer. They worry that by waiting, they would regretfully miss the opportunity. 

3. Eliminating Extra Inventory

According to Forbes, many shops will be struggling with surplus inventory in 2022. For instance, Walmart had a 33% rise in inventory with only a 3% increase in sales. If that applies to you, a flash sale is a fantastic way to quickly optimize your inventory levels.

4. Increasing visibility

The average session duration increases when users are drawn to the website and kept there by good deals with short deadlines. Additionally, buyers frequently talk about such sales on social media or by word of mouth, which helps to raise awareness of your business. 

Not the least, last. 80% of internet buyers acknowledge that a discount, coupon, or other offer encourages them to purchase from a new brand. Flash sales, then, may persuade more buyers to test your product. 

5. Selling uncommon goods

Let’s imagine you have a couple items that don’t sell well. You can draw clients’ attention to these items with a flash sale thanks to their low cost. If customers enjoy your product, they might buy it again and lift it out of the lowest-selling category. 

Another possibility is that you’ll just free up storage space for other stuff that can be sold, which is also a positive consequence. Whatever the objective of your flash sale is, the Claspo pop-up will help you get there more quickly. Display your special offer right on your website to boost conversions.

Why Flash Sales on Your Shopping May Fail

When their sales numbers drastically diverge from what they had predicted, some shops are taken aback. These “buy-now” pushers do indeed have traps. Your strategy also has a good possibility of failing if you ignore them.

1. Website loading too slowly

Flash sales sometimes coincide with a surge in traffic, which affects how well your website performs. Most visitors will depart without buying if it loads too slowly. Therefore, all of your efforts to promote the on-site flash sale to clients will be ineffective. Your website should load in between 0 and 2 seconds in the ideal case. If not, the conversion rates will “steal” 4.42% from each succeeding second.

2. Untimely Sold Out 

Before the flash sale ends, more than half of the products are gone, and many customers are unable to purchase the desired item because it is out of stock. 

Most retailers overestimate their stock levels before flash deals, which is the main cause. You run the risk of driving clients away from your brand after such a negative encounter by engaging in this irresponsible behavior.

3. Shipping Problems 

One drawback of many orders placed during flash deals is the issue with timely delivery. Buyers frequently have to wait weeks to receive their products. 

According to a recent Easyship survey, 17% of consumers will stop buying from a company if shipping is delayed, and 80% want to receive their purchases the same day. 

After such a sale, you run the danger of losing the customer’s loyalty due to their high expectations for delivery.

4. Bringing in Deal Seekers

Flash deals run the danger of drawing in a sizable number of deal seekers if they are only intended for new website visitors. Yes, if your main goal is to make money right away, this strategy can work. However, these flash sales may deceive you if your entire strategy and customer lifetime value are a concern. 

Deal seekers will only stick with your brand if you have low costs. They won’t frequently visit your website again following the sale as a result. Another option is to entice customers with ongoing discounts, which could have an impact on your revenue and brand’s reputation. 

No.Best Practices for Flash Sales ExecutionDescription/Examples
1Set a Specific Goal– Ridding of excess festive stock- Highlighting particular products- Increasing current clients’ steadfastness- Attracting new customers- Activating dormant customers or cart abandoners
2Divide Up Your Clientele– Focus on a particular subset of the audience to enhance personalization and satisfaction.- Example: Offer exclusive flash sales to long-standing customers on a new collection
3Pick Flash Sale Items Carefully– Use data and tools like Google Keyword Planner for item selection- Consider factors like excess inventory, bestsellers, and products with high views but low sales
4Select a Good Sale Period– Run flash sales during pre-holiday or post-holiday periods, or time them with important company events- Example: Black Friday, pre-Christmas
5Set a Reasonable Time Limit– Limit the flash sale to no more than 48 hours, with 2- or 3-hour deadlines showing the highest purchase rates
6Announce Your Sale Early– Use email campaigns, social media announcements, and website pop-ups to advertise the flash sale
7Allow Free Shipping– Including free shipping can enhance the worth of your flash sale for customers
8Stress the Limited Offer– Use timers counting down or show the number of stocked items to create a sense of urgency and scarcity
9Check the Levels of Your Stock– Monitor real-time stock levels during a sale and keep a secure stock
10Check the Performance of Your Website– Ensure the website can handle heavy traffic and is optimized for performance and mobile access
11Make Your Purchase Known– Use pop-ups to highlight the unique offer on the homepage to draw attention immediately
12Use Flash Sales Sensibly– Avoid frequent sales to prevent predictability and trust issues, and ensure profitability is maintained

Flash Sales: 12 Best Practices for Execution

The good news is that if you thoroughly organize your flash sale and create a clear strategy for operating it, you can prevent failure. We have included all the tried-and-true methods below to make your task easier.

1. Set a Specific Goal

Like every marketing, a flash sale needs to have a clear objective. After establishing a goal, you will know which products to mark down and which market you should concentrate on. You will be able to judge the success of the sale (or whether the objective was met) once it has concluded. Here are a few instances: 

  • Ridding oneself of festive excess stock 
  • Highlighting particular products 
  • Increasing the steadfastness of current clients 
  • Bringing in new customers 
  • Activating dormant customers or cart abandoners.

A flash sale can actually be used for a variety of purposes, and you should pick the one that best matches your overall marketing plan.

2. Divide Up Your Clientele

A broad audience is a poor target for your flash sale for two key reasons. 

  • First, there will be no personalisation in your offer. In the meanwhile, 76% of consumers will make a purchase from a brand if it matches their expectations for targeted promotions. 
  • Second, a free-for-all sale could place you in an uncomfortable position. As an illustration, you lower the price of goods that your regular clients have already bought at the original price. They probably won’t be overjoyed to hear that other customers may now get it for 60% less. 

So concentrate on a particular subset of your audience. For instance, you may offer a long-standing customer base with an exclusive flash sale on a new collection. By doing this, you may win customers loyalty while also monitoring the demand for your recently launched products to prevent overproduction. 

Another strategy is to undercut the prices of well-liked, low-margin items that your competitors are stocking in order to draw more clients to your online business. And lastly, you can only give substantial discounts to doubtful customers who have abandoned their shopping carts. Perhaps the cost was what prevented them from making a purchase.

3. Pick Your Flash Sale Items Carefully

The items you discount have a significant impact on how well your sale goes. You should use data to help you make the best decisions.

Search Term Query

You may ascertain the search phrases used by your audience using Google Keyword Planner. It enables you to identify the products that draw clients in within a particular time frame and provide them with what they require.

Competitive Analysis

Investigating the best-selling items or products of the competition is another smart strategy. You can make money by offering the same or comparable products at a discount in your online store.

Products you have Data

You should pay close attention to the following when examining your selection:

  • Excess inventory of goods. If you want to make room for newcomers, this is a smart option.
  • Bestsellers or iconic products under your brand. You may spread the word about your business by providing things that are uniquely yours.
  • Products with a lot of views but few sales. Because of the price, your clients may browse but not purchase. In this situation, price reductions might be a wonderful way to boost loyalty.

4. Select a Good Sale Period

When sales are at their best, there are primarily two times:

  • Pre-holiday. It’s no secret that sales and shopping are always associated with the holidays. Retailer sales for Thanksgiving and Black Friday in 2022 totaled 5.3 and 9.12 billion, respectively. Likewise, 56% of consumers began their shopping in October. It implies that you can successfully run a flash sale prior to the busy season.
  • Post-holiday. Even though the holidays are past, many are still shopping. 70% of consumers surveyed said they would be willing to purchase after Christmas. Given their large Christmas and pre-holiday expenditures, your sale may be very appreciated.

However, you are still not required to observe the holidays. You may instead organize a time for your online flash sales. For instance, you might time them to coincide with an important event for your company or just launch them at 11:11 on August 11 to draw attention. The key benefit of this strategy is the lower level of competition than during the aforementioned vacation seasons.

5. Set a reasonable time limit

You can only run it for a brief period of time, keep in mind the definition of a flash sale. It’s not that flashy if not. Such sales often last no longer than 48 hours, with 2- or 3-hour deadlines having the highest purchase rates.

Utilize Google Analytics to ascertain the times and days when your website receives the most traffic. It will assist you in deciding when to begin the sale so that you don’t lose conversions.

6. Announce Your Sale Early

If nobody knows about it, even your best sale could not succeed. It’s in your best interest to attract as many customers who are prepared to buy to your website at the appropriate time because it has a limited window of opportunity. Run advance advertising for flash sales to: 

  • Get customers excited about a future prospect. 
  • Inform customers of the date, time, and other important information 
  • If the goal of your flash sale is to draw in new customers, expand your subscription base.


If your flash sale is intended for current customers or potential consumers who have already signed up for your newsletter, an email campaign is a great way to advertise. In this scenario, make sure to include the suggested discount’s size in the subject line. 

Due to the fact that most consumers have an eye for a good offer, these emails have an average conversion rate of 18.1%. As a result, you can draw customers to the approaching sale and earn money. 

On Social Media

According to a McKinsey study, social media had a considerable impact on both the direct (where endorsing a product was a deciding factor in a purchase) and indirect (when social media was one of the touchpoints in a customer’s journey) purchasing decisions. 

In light of this, there are numerous strategies to advertise your flash sale on social media: 

  • As soon as you settle on the date and time, make the announcement.
  • Request that followers subtly tag their friends in order to receive rewards. 
  • On the night before the event, publish a reminder. 
  • Publish adverts if your budget allows it.

Pop-Ups on websites

According to Entrepreneur, websites with pop-ups have a 4x greater conversion rate than websites without them—exactly 16% versus 3.7%. Pop-ups combining marketing offers and relevant, important information perform best at the same time. 

You need to educate website visitors about the approaching flash sale and briefly outline its advantages during the advertising stage. Customers are more likely to visit your website on a deal day if they can see how much they can save on your online store soon.

7. Allow Free Shipping 

66% of consumers expect free shipping on every online order, according to the Consumer Trends Report. You automatically improve your flash sale’s worth for your clients by including this incentive. In addition, customers are less irritated by delays—which frequently happen during the sales season—if the delivery is free.

8. Stressing the Limited Offer

The majority of shoppers postpone their purchases because they think they can manage their time. Your job in this situation is to remind them that you are in control and that your deal is finite. To accomplish this, consider adding the following to your buy-now call to action:

Timer counting down

A sense of urgency that is created by this timer has been shown to improve purchasing intent. Using it makes it crystal clear to customers that every hour, if not every minute, counts and encourages them to decide right away.

For instance, the MusicLawContracts “Download this contract now” button’s proximity to a countdown timer raised conversion rates by as much as 147%.

Number of Stocked Items

One of the most successful techniques for creating a sense of scarcity is to indicate how many items are left. According to research, a product’s worth and buyer appeal increase when its supply decreases. Here, a straightforward consumer logic applies: 

  • If there aren’t enough products remaining, demand will increase. 
  • If they are valued, they are in demand, 
  • If they are priceless, I must have them. 
  • I also need them now because there are only so many of the available items.

9. Check the levels of your stock.

Items may sell out before the flash sale expires, as was already said, damaging your brand’s reputation. However, there is a sensible way to prevent it:

  • To estimate how many units of each item you’ll need for your upcoming flash sale, examine purchasing patterns and data from your prior sales.
  • If demand is higher than anticipated, offer more discounted items or keep a secure stock.
  • Real-time stock levels should be monitored during a sale. You can use it to indicate how many units are still available on the product page. Additionally, it will help you keep track of when your promotional products are running low so you can quickly restock.

10. Check the Performance of Your Website

Before a flash sale, your eCommerce platform must be set up to handle heavy traffic. A high bounce rate and abandoned carts are assured if it takes a long time to load. As a result, you ought to

  • Test loads while simulating heavy traffic
  • Find and remove broken links that affect a website’s performance.
  • Set up lazy image loading for quick site loading
  • For quicker data flow to customers’ browsers, enable Gzip compression.
  • As the majority of customers access your website through smartphones, optimize the mobile version.

11. Make Your Purchase Known

Imagine that on a deal day, a lot of interested parties came to your website as a result of your flash sale promotion, but it takes a while to find the needed deals. You run the danger of losing the majority of your conversions in this situation. When a customer can’t discover the proper product on a website within five seconds, 61% of them depart. 

Pop-ups again come to the rescue in this situation. Your unique offer can be included as a pop-up to the homepage, enabling you to: 

  • Draw website visitors’ attention right away. 
  • Enhance the client experience 
  • Reduce the amount of time needed to find the proper products. 
  • Customers can quickly be sent to product sale pages.

13. Use Flash Sales Sensibly

Sooner or later, frequent sales start to become predictable. You can’t use a sense of haste or dread of missing out in this situation. Your clients are aware that if they wait to make a purchase, they will have the same opportunity the following day and the day after that. Over time, it will lower your conversion rates. 

You also lose the trust of your customers. Recall the purpose of the flash sale. This agreement has a strict time frame. Customers made an impulsive purchase because they thought your offer was only accessible for a short period of time. 

They could, however, take their time, think things over thoroughly, and then purchase during your subsequent flash sale. Is it not a con? 

Finally, having numerous sales reduces your profit because you must give up 30%, 50%, or 90% of the initial price each time.

Preferred locations to display Flash Sale deals

Many merchants seize the opportunity to entice clients to purchase right away. At the same time, each person approaches customer influence differently.


The homepage is the most preferred location to advertise a flash sale on a deal day because it makes sure that all website visitors see your special deal.

The WWE Shop employs an eye-catching pop-up to alert customers that the price expires tonight, while Shein emphasizes their offer with a countdown timer. Best Buy uses a sizable static banner to notify customers that the flash sale ends tonight.

Customer Card

Amazon samples show cards for discounted products that advertise a flash sale. In other words, customers utilize an on-site search engine to obtain a list of products and then check to see which ones are now on sale. To pique clients’ curiosity, some cards additionally list how many goods are still available or how many have been sold recently. 

Merchandise Page

Shoppers are sent to a flash sale directly on product sites by eBay and Shein. Shein still uses a countdown timer to create a sense of urgency, and an eBay seller displays the quantity of available and sold items.


In wrapping things up, orchestrating a successful flash sale is much like mastering a fine art. It’s more than just slashing prices and advertising online. It’s about astutely integrating them into your retail strategy. Ensuring your website can withstand the surge, keeping a keen eye on your inventory levels, and timing your sales perfectly can make all the difference. 

Remember, the essence of flash sales lies in their limited availability and the FOMO they instigate. While it’s a robust tool to skyrocket your sales and eliminate extra inventory, it’s imperative to sidestep the common pitfalls that could turn this potential boon into a debacle.

By adopting the best practices laid out, from setting explicit goals to diligently selecting flash sale items and ensuring a seamless checkout experience, you set the stage for not just a one-time purchase rush, but for sustained customer loyalty and long-term ecommerce success. 

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