Black Friday is fast approaching, and everyone involved is making final preparations. For consumers, they hope to get the best deals and conquer as much of their shopping list as possible. For retailers, it can be the single most important day of the year. But one thing everyone involved wants is a smooth, stress-free experience.

It’s understandable that many shoppers dread the day—it can be hectic. But that presents retailers with an opportunity: If you’re able to make the day pleasant, you could have return customers for years to come. Here’s the biggest things shoppers hate about Black Friday, and some tips on how to avoid them:

1. The waiting. Every second counts on Black Friday. Right when your doors open, customers will be rushing to the products they know they need, and many will immediately proceed to the register. And from that moment forward, you may well have continuous lines for the rest of the day.

There are many ways to fight wait times—some retailers use a single long line and then split at the register, many retailers hire temporary workers for the day or the season. This year, there’s a new consideration in the form of chip card processing. If EMV transactions take an average of 15 seconds, your customers could have several extra minutes in line. It’s going to affect satisfaction, and it’s something to try to prevent.

2. The anxiety about bad deals. Many consumers are just assuming that the deals they see are the best they could get, but some have anxiety that the deals may not be as great as they think. It’s a reasonable fear, of course, because so many retailers pull tricks with constant markdowns throughout the year.

It’s a reminder that every retailer must work hard to build up trust with customers. There’s plenty of ways to do it—be transparent with your year round prices, be clear about when you’re offering deals, and reach out with deals that will be particularly appealing to certain customers. Loyalty programs also make sure that customers are getting a deal anytime they walk into your store. That way, customers will trust you enough to return whether it’s the holidays or any other time of year.

3. The crowds. Of course, the crowds can’t be stopped—and that’s why many people simply forgo Black Friday. At Thanksgiving dinners around the country, a few people will talk about the deals they’re excited to get in the morning, while a handful of others will respond that they can’t fathom braving the sea of shoppers. Those people who would never enter the fray are why Cyber Monday has become such a crucial day.

It’s an important reminder that no matter the size of your operation, it pays to have an online presence. Online stores are easy to set up these days, and there are plenty of customers out there who completely forgo all in-store holiday shopping in favor of online shopping. If your customers know you don’t have an online presence, they may simply find another on the web. So make sure you’re not missing out.

​​How to Solve Your 3 Biggest Black Friday Problems

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