Dave Earnshaw offers his top tips on how to use paid search to maximise on online sales during Black Friday, as retailers countdown to 27 November.
While everyone is counting down the days to Christmas (six weeks from today for anyone that is wondering!) retailers are counting down the Fridays until Black Friday. Black Friday starts off a chain reaction of busy e-commerce days in the run up to Christmas.
Originating from the US, Black Friday is the day after Thanksgiving. The name Black Friday allegedly originates from retailers beginning to turn a profit, or getting “in the black”, but others claim it is a term used to describe the sheer mass of people and traffic that occurs on this day. What cannot be disputed, however, is that it has now become the busiest shopping day of the year and it has reached our shores.
This year, Black Friday takes place on 27 November. It is tipped to be one of, if not the biggest e-commerce day of the year.
Black Friday 2014 was the busiest e-commerce shopping day on record and it was the first year in the UK that it outperformed Boxing Day. Retailers offer discounts of up to 40% on big brand names, luring customers keen to secure a pre-Christmas bargain. Amazon UK handled more than 5.5 million orders, selling 64 items per second on Black Friday 2014, while other retailers saw web traffic up 300% and products sold out by 9am.
Preparing Your Paid Search Campaign for Black Friday
Black Friday has become a larger and larger part of the UK commercial landscape. Since 2012 search volume for Black Friday terms has quadrupled year on year and it doesn’t look like its stopping anytime soon. Search volume is not only increasing at an exponential rate, it is increasing earlier and earlier!
The competition on paid search has already begun as we countdown to the biggest shopping day of the year. Some retailers have even launched their deals early this year to take advantage of the influx in traffic:
Does it impact retailers that aren’t in sale?
Absolutely! Don’t worry if you’re not in sale yourself, you can ride on the coat tails of those that are. Retailers that offered a discount last year saw an average uplift in sales of 180%, while those out of sale saw an average uplift of 24%. One of our clients saw their conversion rate increase naturally by 16% despite not being in sale themselves.
How To Use AdWords To Maximise on the Black Friday Buzz
If you’re in sale then great, shout it from the rooftops! And make sure your offers are visible in your ads. AdWords has recently rolled out Black Friday Structured Snippet headers. These will be visible in ads from 20 to 27 November, giving you even more opportunity to get visibility on your deals.
Make sure to make the most out of countdown ads as they can really raise excitement and interest in your creative.
If you are bidding on your own brand terms, make sure to start bidding on Black Friday brand terms and take advantage of the Black Friday traffic; especially if you don’t yet rank strongly for these terms on organic.
Whether you are in sale or not, make sure to plan for a large increase in traffic and spend. Optimise for higher competition on terms and be prepared.