Google AdWords has recently partnered with Ipsos MediaCT to survey consumers about their planned shopping behavior for this holiday season. They found a lot of very valuable information that marketers and brands need to be aware of in order to get the most out of their holiday marketing strategies. One of the key points that they have made is that while people are using online shopping more than ever, they are also taking more time to do research before buying.
In 2010, shoppers reported visiting an average of five sites to research before making a purchase. This year, that number shot up to 12. What’s important to take away from this is that you need to start marketing to your customers now, so they will come back to your site when they are finally ready to make their final purchase.
Another interesting statistic that was reported is that as much as one third of all shopping related searches on Google occur between 10PM and 4AM. Of course, after hours shopping is a key benefit of the Internet, but the fact that such a high percentage of these searches takes place at these hours is certainly something that many brands can take advantage of.
“Black Friday Month”
They also found that while black Friday and Cyber Monday are certainly huge shopping days, they aren’t the only important days of the year. In fact, from the end of November right up until Christmas are all extremely important for driving holiday sales. Look at this image from AdWords, which shows some key shopping days and why they are important:
YouTube Window Shopping
Another important marketing technique that can be used by many business is publishing content on YouTube, Pinterest and other similar sites. Research has shown that many people are using these types of sites to learn about products and see how they work before making purchases. In addition, ‘unboxing’ videos are very popular. During the holiday season, for example, the number of people searching for things with a product name and/or the word ‘haul’ in them shoots up, as can be seen in this chart:
Smart Phone Marketing
Of course, no holiday marketing guide would be complete without touching on the importance of marketing to people using their smart phones. Google AdWords found that 75% of shoppers this season will be using their phone to do research while making a purchase in-store. For example, they may be shopping for a television at an electronics store, and use their smart phone to read reviews of different TVs to help inform their decision.
Many others will be doing just the opposite. Standing in a store to get an in person look, while making the actual purchase online to help avoid taxes or get a better deal. Whatever the case, smart phones are an essential shopping tool that brands need to really think about while developing their overall marketing strategy in 2014 and beyond.