Peak season is officially here, and we’re here to help you supercharge your performance over this crucial trading period.
Black Friday began as an in-store sales day in the United States, touting some of the most significant promotions seen all year. Perfectly placed in the calendar for Christmas present shopping, the term was originally used for retailers who operated at a loss between January and November and moved ‘out of the red’ when the holiday trading period began.
With the advent of online shopping, Cyber Monday was introduced for online-first retailers.
Now, the two merge into one trading extravaganza, with promotions launching earlier and earlier each year.
Three key PPC strategies you shouldn’t miss
As marketers, we begin talking about the peak period as early as summer, so once we get to this point, most preparation has already been done. However, to boost your existing efforts, we have three final strategies that should not be missed to ensure your Paid Search marketing is turned up to the max.
1. Scheduled promotion changes
With promotional calendars confirmed for Black Friday weekend, advertisers should be preparing to align ad copy, extensions and asset groups with the promotions on site well in advance.
Instead of using generic ‘Black Friday Weekend’ messaging, keeping copy up to date with percentage discounts or gifts alongside purchases drives both a higher click through rate and a higher conversion rate.
How do we recommend you do this? By using one of the following features….
- Ad Builder combined with Business Data in Search Ads 360
- Create a template for your ads and schedule an upload of a Business Data table to update the customisers in your ads in line with the change to promotions on site.
- Automated Rules in Google Ads and Microsoft Ads
- Build separate, discount-centric copy and use automated rules to enable and pause your ads in line with promotion changes. Remember to leave a small window of overlap so as not to risk going offline!
In a world of automated bidding, audiences are a crucial signal to the bid strategy as to which users are likely to drive a return on investment. So, make sure you capitalise on Google’s seasonal audiences by overlaying them onto campaigns.
For an advanced approach, create Combined Audiences with your Remarketing For Search Lists or customer relationship management (CRM) Audiences. Overlaying your ‘All Converters’ audience with Google’s In-Market for ‘Online Black Friday Shopping’ audience feeds the bid strategy with important signals for this crucial time.
3. Seasonality Adjustments
For advertisers using Search Ads 360, it’s important that you don’t neglect the powerful ‘Seasonality Adjustments’ feature.
First, you’ll need to make sure you review how conversion rate trended over last year’s peak period. Second, if conversion rate was more than 30% higher than the previous 30 days average at any point, leverage Seasonality Adjustments.
Most bidding strategies can accommodate a 30% swing in conversion rate day-to-day, adjusting spend levels accordingly. However, for greater than 30% swings, Search Ads 360 recommends using this tool to supercharge the bid strategy. From our experience, these are quite aggressive, so only use them if you are confident in the expected increase in performance.
We also recommend you consider your planned promotions – if last year’s conversion rate increased by 20%, but this year your promotion is significantly more aggressive, you might still consider using.
While these strategies are crucial to capitalise on during this key period, they’re there to benefit you all year round. Use them to drive your Paid Search strategy throughout the year, and get ready for an even better 2023 peak!