Top 5 Ways to Prepare for Peak with Google Ads

Colin Boucher

September 26, 2022

Peak season is almost upon us and with all signs pointing to it starting earlier than ever, with Christmas gifting searches now ramping up in August and September, it’s time to start preparing for peak. In this article, we’re sharing our top five tips for planning and preparing for peak season with Google Ads and the strategies required to get your Paid Search ready so you can drive success over this crucial period.

1. Go Early

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In 2021, gifting search terms started increasing in popularity in August. The general trend is that people are looking, researching and weighing their options early, so it’s best to start your Paid activity early to ensure that you’re capturing that early research traffic. This will help drive revenue alongside aiding those consumers who are in their research phase.

From 2020 to 2021, spend during Cyber Week actually only rose 2% but in the weeks leading up to it, it increased by 16%. However, Cyber Week is still the biggest period during the latter half of the year, accounting for 23% of all online spend by consumers over peak. Being prepared and starting early will help you to maximise your time during this period.

2. Get Ready for Privacy Changes

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 According to Google, 48% of global consumers have stopped buying or using a service due to privacy concerns. Privacy is front of mind when consumers are shopping online and we know that Google is phasing out 3rd party cookies in 2023. This is going to make it much harder to track users online and it’s something that brands need to think about this now – waiting isn’t an option.

From a Google Ads point of view, you want to ensure you have set up the Google Ads tag across your site and have enabled ‘Enhanced Conversions’, which ensures all conversions are tracked and allows you to monitor other actions such as ‘Add to Cart.’ This is relatively easy to set up, especially if you use ‘Google Tag Manager’.

It’s also vitally important that you build up your first-party data during this time as this is data you own and it can be used when targeting consumers that have provided your brand with their email address. Pattern’s own experience shows that by segmenting and using first-party data, you can see a 10% improvement in revenue and ROI.

3. Ensure Consumers Can Discover your Brand

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A full-funnel approach is now more important than ever as consumers become more discerning and have more choices than ever of where to shop.

Pattern has seen success with Google Ads’ ‘Discovery Campaigns’ (image-based ads that appear on Google platforms such as Gmail and the Google app), which have driven success both from a traffic and revenue perspective.

The performance of these campaigns is significantly enhanced by adopting a segmented and nuanced approach to first-party data and incorporating these into your campaigns. Other options for a full-funnel approach include YouTube and testing bidding on keywords that are more representative of the research phase. (e.g. ‘best baby clothes’ for a baby clothes brand)

4. Get Moving with Performance Max

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Earlier this year, Google announced that they were moving away from Smart Shopping and launched Performance Max. This is a new campaign type that incorporates features and placements from Smart Shopping but expands them onto other platforms such as Gmail but also alternative creative options, such as images and videos.

Since Google has already started automatically upgrading Smart Shopping campaigns to Performance Max, expect to see some fluctuations in the first 2 weeks following the switch over but results generally seem positive. We recommend upgrading sooner rather than later to limit any potential impact to peak period.

5. Flight Budgets Accordingly

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Peak period will be even more competitive than in 2021 and you’ll need your budgets to support this period, we recommend boosting budgets in October to start capturing that early peak traffic. As we enter November and the Cyber Period, start early and make sure you are capturing those consumers looking for early bargains, ensuring you are being nimble in your optimisations and reacting to the data that you are seeing.

Overall, peak period is vital to help drive your sales and by preparing early, you will see strong results and drive success for your brand. If you want to discuss how your brand can navigate this next peak period, contact us to discuss your options with our performance team now.

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One Amazon Live Event Wins Owlet the Best Seller Rank in Two Categories
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One Amazon Live Event Wins Owlet the Best Seller Rank in Two Categories

Owlet is dedicated to providing innovative baby monitor products that can track a baby's vital signs, giving parents peace of mind. With such a compelling product solution, Owlet wanted to raise brand and product awareness.  

Working with Pattern as its 3P partner on Amazon, Pattern decided to host an Amazon Live event to feature Owlet products in use. That way, Owlet could demonstrate the efficacy of their baby monitoring products dispelling any consumer doubt, skepticism, and addressing all questions.

Download the one-page case study here.

Amazon Live Kicks Off Owlet Sale Event

Pattern produced and executed an Amazon Live to kick off a sale with Owlet. Pattern’s creative team set up a studio at our global headquarters complete with a baby crib, Owlet products, and two charismatic hosts who acted as brand advocates. After the event, Pattern's digital marketing experts measured the impact to overall sales.

Read more about Owlet's Amazon Live event.

During and After Amazon Live, Owlet Sales Spike

During the event, Owlet traffic, defined by Amazon page views and sessions, spiked. The event’s attention to product detail, compelling video, and host engagement improved conversions too. Owlet's sales increased by over 10% during the week of their Amazon Live event and sale. 

But the success didn’t stop there–the event improved Owlet's Best Seller Ranking as well.  Their sock monitor went up ~70% and their camera by ~69% during that week. 

Owlet Traffic, Conversion, and Rank Skyrocket 

  • Owlet sales, page views, and sessions all spiked during the Amazon Live event.

  • Owlet increased sales by approximately 9-16% throughout the whole week of the Live event and sale.

  • Owlet’s Best Seller Ranking Jumped:

    • Sock monitor improved by 70% during the week of their Amazon Live event and sale.

    • Camera improved by 69% during the week of their Amazon Live event and sale.

Pattern’s Amazon Expertise 

As the world’s top ecommerce accelerator and Amazon 3P partner, Pattern knows how to take advantage of the various advertising channels on Amazon and other marketplaces to build your brand.  Pattern’s strategy is grounded in data-driven trends and consumer shopper behavior on Amazon, which is applied to our ecommerce equation.

How can we increase traffic and conversion to your brand? Contact us today.

“Partnering with Pattern has expanded our ability to capitalize on sales-driving opportunities that we wouldn't be able to tackle on our own. ”

– Jared Anderson, Owlet VP of Sales


Catch a behind the scenes moment from the Amazon Live Event:

4 Key Considerations To Win on International Ecommerce
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5 Crucial Considerations When Building Your Global Marketplace Strategy

As a brand creates revenue and gains momentum on domestic marketplaces, executives may start to wonder if they should grow their brand internationally. Expanding to international marketplaces is complicated, can be overwhelming, but building a solid strategy before expanding internationally will streamline the process. 

At Pattern, we’ve helped countless brands build their international strategy with our proprietary data, global marketplace experience, and local expertise in established and emerging regions. 

Building an international strategy must be calculated and methodical, and here are five considerations at the core of going global: 

1. Distribution by Country/Region

First, it should be no surprise that the methods and strategies companies use to transport products from the distribution centers to customers can vary by country or region. Handling order fulfillments may look different from shipping and packaging options, to delivery and transportation. Although the basic steps of global distribution may remain the same, the nuances of regional distribution may vary. 

If your brand already has a high-level distribution strategy in place in the areas you are currently selling, then it’s possible to modify and use it to go global.  

2. Consumer Demand

Before expanding to a specific country, marketplace, or entire region (across multiple marketplaces), it’s important you thoroughly research and understand the consumer demand for your product. Do you have data to show that your expansion market(s) has a need for your product? 

Beyond product-market fit, additional parts of consumer demand analysis include: consumer behavior, awareness of differences in cultural norms, and the beliefs and values of international buyers. Having access to data-driven insights and analysis on traffic and conversion, like Pattern’s reporting, is key to understand consumer demand in certain regions. 

3. Product Registration and Regulatory

Countries around the world set up regulations and processes to protect their consumers from any hazardous imports. Because of that, it only makes sense that these countries may have different product registration requirements and standards. Before expanding to new regions, a brand should make sure their products are registered with the appropriate government institutions and follow all production best practices to prevent any roadblocks.

At Pattern, our regional experts have the resources to manage marketplace setup and understand administrative requirements necessary to help scale global growth for your brand. 

4. Localized Pricing

When it comes to localized pricing, international ecommerce retailers should keep in mind two things–currency conversion and customer perception of price. As brands look to expand internationally, thorough research should be done to understand the currency conversions at each stage of the product life cycle in order to figure out the optimal localized pricing, while still retaining a net profit.

Remember, because of cultural differences, final pricing may be perceived differently by customers on international marketplaces. For example, in the western countries, it’s common for prices to end in a 9, but in other countries, it may be best to use a round number instead. High market saturation of certain products may also affect consumers’ perception of pricing, making them more likely to pay a higher price for the product than in a low-saturation market. 

5. Localized Labeling

Different countries and regions may have unique requirements for product labeling. Awareness and understanding of these requirements is key to a successful international strategy. For example, labeling may need to be in a certain language, and some countries may require brands to include certain product information. 

Your domestic team may not be equipped to handle all translations and regulatory conversations, so having the resources in place before attempting to expand globally will help prepare you for expansion. As a global ecommerce partner, Pattern has a team of regional experts and end-to-end resources to ease the pain of complying with local product labeling requirements.   

Build a Successful International Marketplace Strategy With Pattern

Moving into global markets requires a significant amount of research and planning–that usually starts with these 5 considerations. Having a solid strategy in place before your brand starts expanding to international marketplaces will make the overall process much smoother, easier to manage, and with a higher likelihood for success.. 

Going global can be intimidating, costly, and overwhelming to grow revenue, but with Pattern as your 3P trade partner, you’ll have the experience, resources, and data to successfully expand your business internationally. Our global expertise and footprint makes international growth on marketplaces frictionless and profitable. 

Is your brand considering global marketplaces? Contact us


Want to learn more about how Pattern helps brands go global? Watch this message from our co-founder and CEO, Dave Wright.

Panic Week Prep: Analyzing Patterns in U.S. Shopping Behavior Before Christmas Day
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Panic Week Prep: Analyzing Patterns in U.S. Shopping Behavior Before Christmas Day

**Find Out What’s in Highest Demand During Panic Week** The holiday season is in full swing, and ecommerce retailers need to be prepared for the mad dash to squeeze in every online order before Christmas Day. In this analysis, we help internet retailers prepare by highlighting some of the most noteworthy patterns in U.S. consumer behavior during Panic Week. We’ll cover: * Onesies for the Win: Boy’s Novelty One-Piece Pajamas in Highest Demand * Stockings for Stuffing: Panic Week Reminds Shoppers to Deck the Halls * High Demand for Sports Video Games * Electronics & Computers Insights: Mobile & PC VR Headsets See Highest Demand * How to Prep Your Online Shop for Panic Week No matter how early you start your holiday shopping, there’s something about the final days leading up to Christmas that triggers panic deep within us. Did I remember to get a gift for my neighbor’s cat? Is there still time to order the latest VR headset for my recluse teenager? Oh shoot — the lights just went out on the tree… These final “panic” moments are entirely natural, and, as a result, online retailers can expect an uptick in consumer demand. To help ecommerce shops prepare, we’ve provided a comprehensive summary of which products see a spike in demand and which products consumers are searching for most during the final week leading up to Christmas Day. **Onesies for the Win: Boys’ Novelty One-Piece Pajamas in Highest Demand** It turns out Ralphie won’t be the only child to open a box of onesie pajamas. According to our analysis, boys’ novelty one-piece pajamas see the highest spike in demand during the week leading up to Christmas. In fact, boys’ onesie pajamas saw a 398% and 393% increase in demand when compared to the annual average for 2020 and 2021, respectively. <iframe title="Seasonal Change in U.S. Consumer Demand for Clothing &amp;amp; Jewelry in 2020" aria-label="Interactive line chart" id="datawrapper-chart-qSUvx" src="https://datawrapper.dwcdn.net/qSUvx/2/" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" style="width: 0; min-width: 100% !important; border: none;" height="692" data-external="1"></iframe><script type="text/javascript">!function(){"use strict";window.addEventListener("message",(function(e){if(void 0!==e.data["datawrapper-height"]){var t=document.querySelectorAll("iframe");for(var a in e.data["datawrapper-height"])for(var r=0;r<t.length;r++){if(t[r].contentWindow===e.source)t[r].style.height=e.data["datawrapper-height"][a]+"px"}}}))}(); </script> <iframe title="Seasonal Change in U.S. Consumer Demand for Clothing &amp;amp; Jewelry in 2021" aria-label="Interactive line chart" id="datawrapper-chart-Xa9FA" src="https://datawrapper.dwcdn.net/Xa9FA/2/" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" style="width: 0; min-width: 100% !important; border: none;" height="692" data-external="1"></iframe><script type="text/javascript">!function(){"use strict";window.addEventListener("message",(function(e){if(void 0!==e.data["datawrapper-height"]){var t=document.querySelectorAll("iframe");for(var a in e.data["datawrapper-height"])for(var r=0;r<t.length;r++){if(t[r].contentWindow===e.source)t[r].style.height=e.data["datawrapper-height"][a]+"px"}}}))}(); </script> Along with boys’ onesies, women’s novelty one-piece pajamas also see a spike in demand during this time. Demand for women’s onesie pajamas rose 139% above the annual average for 2020 and 142% above the annual average for 2021. Perhaps there are some mother-son Christmas Story style memories in the making here. Along with onesie pajamas, there were also noteworthy demand spikes for women’s socks, girls’ rings, and women’s rings. In 2020, demand for these items rose 121%, 106%, and 93% above the annual average, respectively. Demand for women’s socks rose 150% above the average for 2021 while both women’s and girls’ rings each saw a 42% spike in demand above the annual average. Since small items like socks and jewelry make perfect stocking stuffers, it makes sense that these items would experience increased demand in the days leading up to Christmas. **Stockings for Stuffing: Panic Week Reminds Shoppers to Deck the Halls** These days, shoppers aren’t just scrambling to stuff their stockings — they’re waiting until the last minute to buy them altogether. According to our analysis, demand for Christmas stockings and holders is the highest compared to all other items within the Home, Decor & Kitchen category during Panic Week 2020 and 2021. <iframe title="Seasonal Change in U.S. Consumer Demand for Home, Decor &amp;amp; Kitchen in 2020" aria-label="Interactive line chart" id="datawrapper-chart-PsGCA" src="https://datawrapper.dwcdn.net/PsGCA/5/" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" style="width: 0; min-width: 100% !important; border: none;" height="692" data-external="1"></iframe><script type="text/javascript">!function(){"use strict";window.addEventListener("message",(function(e){if(void 0!==e.data["datawrapper-height"]){var t=document.querySelectorAll("iframe");for(var a in e.data["datawrapper-height"])for(var r=0;r<t.length;r++){if(t[r].contentWindow===e.source)t[r].style.height=e.data["datawrapper-height"][a]+"px"}}}))}(); </script> <iframe title="Seasonal Change in U.S. Consumer Demand for Home, Decor &amp;amp; Kitchen in 2021" aria-label="Interactive line chart" id="datawrapper-chart-L609K" src="https://datawrapper.dwcdn.net/L609K/5/" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" style="width: 0; min-width: 100% !important; border: none;" height="692" data-external="1"></iframe><script type="text/javascript">!function(){"use strict";window.addEventListener("message",(function(e){if(void 0!==e.data["datawrapper-height"]){var t=document.querySelectorAll("iframe");for(var a in e.data["datawrapper-height"])for(var r=0;r<t.length;r++){if(t[r].contentWindow===e.source)t[r].style.height=e.data["datawrapper-height"][a]+"px"}}}))}(); </script> Along with stockings, there is also a significant rise in demand for both Christmas ornaments and tree toppers during Panic Week. Demand for ornaments rose 110% above the annual average for 2020. In 2021, demand spiked again at 96% above average. The same story is told for Christmas tree toppers: During Panic Week 2020, demand rose 66% above the annual average while Panic Week 2021 saw a 60% increase in demand over the average. **High Demand for Sports Video Games** Within the Video Games category, we discovered sports fan video games and accessories saw the highest increased demand during Panic Week. In fact, sports fan video games saw the highest demand all year during the weeks leading up to Christmas when compared to the annual average for both 2020 and 2021. Demand soared to 207% above the annual average for 2020, and in 2021, it reached 192% above the annual average. <iframe title="Seasonal Change in U.S. Consumer Demand for Video Game Products in 2020" aria-label="Interactive line chart" id="datawrapper-chart-DkzcX" src="https://datawrapper.dwcdn.net/DkzcX/4/" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" style="width: 0; min-width: 100% !important; border: none;" height="692" data-external="1"></iframe><script type="text/javascript">!function(){"use strict";window.addEventListener("message",(function(e){if(void 0!==e.data["datawrapper-height"]){var t=document.querySelectorAll("iframe");for(var a in e.data["datawrapper-height"])for(var r=0;r<t.length;r++){if(t[r].contentWindow===e.source)t[r].style.height=e.data["datawrapper-height"][a]+"px"}}}))}(); </script> <iframe title="Seasonal Change in U.S. Consumer Demand for Movies, Music &amp;amp; Games in 2021" aria-label="Interactive line chart" id="datawrapper-chart-dbg67" src="https://datawrapper.dwcdn.net/dbg67/4/" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" style="width: 0; min-width: 100% !important; border: none;" height="692" data-external="1"></iframe><script type="text/javascript">!function(){"use strict";window.addEventListener("message",(function(e){if(void 0!==e.data["datawrapper-height"]){var t=document.querySelectorAll("iframe");for(var a in e.data["datawrapper-height"])for(var r=0;r<t.length;r++){if(t[r].contentWindow===e.source)t[r].style.height=e.data["datawrapper-height"][a]+"px"}}}))}(); </script> On what consoles will these video games be played? The answer to this question appears connected to what’s happening in the gaming world. In our recent analysis on [what factors impacted consumer demand for video games from 2020 – 2021](https://pattern.com/blog/what-factors-impacted-consumer-demand-for-video-games-from-2020-2022/), we illustrated how shoppers are heavily influenced by updates within the gaming industry. When evaluating consumer behaviors during Panic Week in 2020 and 2021, we can see these same trends emerge. For example, 2020 marked the release of the Xbox Series X console. Consequently, demand for Xbox Consoles and Xbox Series X Consoles rose 87% and 77% above the annual average during Panic Week 2020. In 2021, however, Nintendo DS games, consoles, and accessories saw a 85% spike in demand during Panic Week. This was probably due to the fact that Nintendo saw [many significant game releases](https://nintendo.fandom.com/wiki/2021) for the 3DS in 2021, including Metroid Dread, Super Mario 3D World, and Mario Party Superstars. **Electronics & Computers Insights: Mobile & PC VR Headsets See Highest Demand** Virtual reality has taken over the digital landscape as evidenced by U.S. shopping behavior on Amazon. Cell phone virtual reality headsets saw the highest increased demand at 153% above the annual average for 2020 and 144% above the annual average for 2021. <iframe title="Seasonal Change in U.S. Consumer Demand for Electronics in 2020" aria-label="Interactive line chart" id="datawrapper-chart-oKCyF" src="https://datawrapper.dwcdn.net/oKCyF/3/" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" style="width: 0; min-width: 100% !important; border: none;" height="692" data-external="1"></iframe><script type="text/javascript">!function(){"use strict";window.addEventListener("message",(function(e){if(void 0!==e.data["datawrapper-height"]){var t=document.querySelectorAll("iframe");for(var a in e.data["datawrapper-height"])for(var r=0;r<t.length;r++){if(t[r].contentWindow===e.source)t[r].style.height=e.data["datawrapper-height"][a]+"px"}}}))}(); </script> <iframe title="Seasonal Change in U.S. Consumer Demand for Electronics in 2021" aria-label="Interactive line chart" id="datawrapper-chart-cSIAW" src="https://datawrapper.dwcdn.net/cSIAW/4/" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" style="width: 0; min-width: 100% !important; border: none;" height="692" data-external="1"></iframe><script type="text/javascript">!function(){"use strict";window.addEventListener("message",(function(e){if(void 0!==e.data["datawrapper-height"]){var t=document.querySelectorAll("iframe");for(var a in e.data["datawrapper-height"])for(var r=0;r<t.length;r++){if(t[r].contentWindow===e.source)t[r].style.height=e.data["datawrapper-height"][a]+"px"}}}))}(); </script> Likewise, PC virtual reality headsets saw the highest increased demand during Panic Week. In 2020, demand rose to 125% above the annual average, and in 2021, demand increased to 144% above the annual average. <iframe title="Seasonal Change in U.S. Consumer Demand for Computers in 2020" aria-label="Interactive line chart" id="datawrapper-chart-5NjC8" src="https://datawrapper.dwcdn.net/5NjC8/3/" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" style="width: 0; min-width: 100% !important; border: none;" height="600" data-external="1"></iframe><script type="text/javascript">!function(){"use strict";window.addEventListener("message",(function(e){if(void 0!==e.data["datawrapper-height"]){var t=document.querySelectorAll("iframe");for(var a in e.data["datawrapper-height"])for(var r=0;r<t.length;r++){if(t[r].contentWindow===e.source)t[r].style.height=e.data["datawrapper-height"][a]+"px"}}}))}(); </script> <iframe title="Seasonal Change in U.S. Consumer Demand for Computers in 2021" aria-label="Interactive line chart" id="datawrapper-chart-uwjs6" src="https://datawrapper.dwcdn.net/uwjs6/3/" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" style="width: 0; min-width: 100% !important; border: none;" height="692" data-external="1"></iframe><script type="text/javascript">!function(){"use strict";window.addEventListener("message",(function(e){if(void 0!==e.data["datawrapper-height"]){var t=document.querySelectorAll("iframe");for(var a in e.data["datawrapper-height"])for(var r=0;r<t.length;r++){if(t[r].contentWindow===e.source)t[r].style.height=e.data["datawrapper-height"][a]+"px"}}}))}(); </script> **How to Prep Your Online Shop for Panic Week** Online retailers will need to prepare their shops differently according to their specific industry. We’ve outlined the top takeaways for ecommerce shop managers as they work to satisfy customers during the holiday chaos: * **Clothing & Jewelry:** Boys’ and women’s onesies see the highest increased demand during Panic Week, with women’s socks, rings, and girl’s rings also high on the priority list for last-minute shoppers. Be sure to have pajamas and jewelry in-stock during this time, and market to customers accordingly to keep the most wanted products within easy reach. * **Home, Decor & Kitchen:** Christmas stockings and holders, ornaments, and tree toppers are in the highest demand during Panic Week. Be sure you have these products in-stock for the scrambling decorators shopping for these items. * **Video Game Products:** Sports fan video games see the highest demand all year during the weeks leading up to Christmas. Now is a great time to generate promotional materials for these products. Since demand for gaming consoles appears connected to updates within the industry, it will be imperative for game shops to keep their fingers on the pulse of what’s happening so they can anticipate their customers’ changing needs. * **Electronics & Computers:** Virtual reality headsets and accessories are a hot commodity for both mobile and PC users. Give customers access to the metaverse this Christmas by keeping these items in stock during times of peak demand. If you’re looking to reach your target consumer using insights like these, Pattern can help. [Contact us](https://pattern.com/contact-us/) online to request a demo today.

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