Continuing our Holiday Advertising Series, we’re walking you through each week of the holiday season and how to adjust your advertising strategy accordingly. From budgets to messaging, learn what to keep in mind this holiday season.
Cyber 5 is here! That magical shopping period from Black Friday to Cyber Monday. Like we mentioned last week, Amazon reports that 41% of holiday purchases will happen in this five-day period called Cyber 5 or Turkey 5.
From an advertising perspective, this significant increase in purchases means an increase in traffic and competition. So, it’s important to plan your strategy ahead of time and be prepared to spend heavily on your most important terms and products.
Hopefully, in the weeks leading up to Cyber 5, you’ve been focused on top-of-funnel strategies so new customers and browsers have your products top of mind. Now, you can get serious about bottom-of-funnel strategies and convincing browsers to convert. Let’s dive into the strategies and optimizations you should use and make to maximize your sales during Cyber 5.
Not every product needs promotion during the holiday shopping period. Categories such as supplements or groceries benefit from the increase in traffic, as customers will likely add their usual purchases to their carts, but there’s not necessarily a lift in sales. If your product is not a seasonal item and will not have a discount running, it’s not recommended to drastically change your advertising strategy. Remain mindful of rising traffic & CPCs but don’t plan for significant increases. If advertising isn’t your best move, check out other best practices for the holiday season to continue driving sales.
If your product is not seasonal but will have a discount running, consider increasing your bids so your offer is at the top of search for the most relevant keywords. This is a great way to drive awareness of your brand with an initial purchase at a lower price point. Just remember, your keyword bids will need to be higher to maintain top of search and page 1 placements. We’ll dive into this more later on.
If your product is seasonal and/or will have a discount running this is your time to shine! Consider which products you need to move through and which are most relevant to holiday shopping, evaluate the top terms for those products, and be prepared to spend, spend, spend.
The next thing to consider during this time-period is your budget capabilities. With the surge in traffic and clicks, you’ll need to spend more than usual to cover all the extra customers browsing their options. Amazon reports that 44% of holiday shoppers are highly likely to make a purchase from an ad on Amazon during Cyber 5—consider how this influx will impact your click through rate.
In addition to more clicks, there is more competition, meaning your bids need to be higher to win on the most important terms. Over the last 30 days, we’ve seen CPCs increase up to 45% for seasonal brands during building up to holiday traffic. This trend will only continue through Turkey Day and Cyber 5. Take the time, each day, to review your bids and impressions. If impressions are not growing, test a higher bid to win placements.
Amazon recommends adjusting bids & daily campaign budgets 200-500% higher than your usual inputs. At Pattern, we set daily budgets to at least 3x the usual needed budget. For some products and budgets, this is a drastic increase, so carefully consider what you can afford to spend based on your catalog and your inventory availability—you’ll want to avoid common holiday stockouts.
Something else to consider during Cyber 5 is the need to keep your campaigns live all day. As other advertisers run out of budget due to the traffic, CPCs decrease. This also lines up with peak shopping time—the golden hours of 7-11 pm. This period is especially profitable as shoppers are rushing to take advantage of deals before they run out. Capitalize on this daily shift by advertising heavily the last half of the day when the competition is offline and customers are scrambling for deals.
Like I mentioned before, it’s critical to get your product in the top of search placements. You want the most visibility for your offer as possible, and this is the prime spot for impressions from qualified audiences. Be strategic about which terms you want to win; Cyber Weekend is not the time for learning. Use a search term report from the last 3+ months to determine your most profitable, relevant terms. Once you have narrowed down the list of terms, consider increasing each of their bids by 100%+.
Once your bids are set, manually search the term yourself and ensure that the right product is in the number one placement. If you are not appearing as high as you would like, go back to your bids and increase slightly, repeating until you are satisfied with your position. It might sound intense, but repeating this exercise hourly (or at least several times) throughout Black Friday or Cyber Monday can help you ensure your budget is spent well and your product is positioned for maximum purchases. This is the most thorough way to make sure your product is being seen by the right customers at the right time.
Top-of-search placements are great for top-of-funnel audiences but there is so much more happening on Amazon during this time period. It’s most ideal if you’ve been generating brand awareness through Sponsored Product campaigns in the weeks prior, and you can now utilize mid- and bottom-of-funnel strategies.
Customers who have viewed your detail pages or brand store in the 30-day window prior to Black Friday are considered mid-funnel. Set up Sponsored Display views remarketing campaigns on your top ASINs with a 30-day lookback window. This will place your products back in front of these audiences who have not yet converted but are now ready to buy. At Pattern, this would be labeled a consideration strategy, right in between true awareness and full brand defense.
Next to consider are your existing customers who already know your brand. It’s important to keep other competitors from disrupting their brand loyalty. I recommend launching Sponsored Product brand defense campaigns that safeguard your most important branded terms. You can also use this as a way to build awareness of the products in your catalog that have discounts running.
And finally, retarget those loyal customers who have purchased from you in the past. It’s likely they are willing to repurchase or gift the same item that they love, as a gift for someone else (especially if they see a great deal). Use a Sponsored Display purchaser retargeting campaign to target customers who have purchased your discounted or top products in the last 30-days. Amazon will serve them ads on-platform that will drive them back to the detail pages of your products.
There are countless other ways to creatively use Amazon’s Sponsored Ads during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. My recommendations today are the most critical but consider using Sponsored Product product targeting or Sponsored Display cross selling or a multitude of other creative strategies to win the most ad real estate for your products. Not sure you have the time to dedicate? Consider working with an advertising partner to handle the workload.
While Amazon has minimal options when it comes to messaging and creative, it’s important to capitalize on the levers you do have. Sponsored Brand and Sponsored Display ads now have the option to include lifestyle imagery. It’s been rumored that Amazon is more likely to serve these ads as the image option is in beta and they want to push the new feature. Consider adding relevant product or lifestyle shots for these campaigns. In the ad copy, use headlines that refer to the season or giftability of the product.
This is also the time, if you haven’t already, to launch seasonal Sponsored Brand Videos. This ad type is a great way to earn more ad real estate on critical terms and educate customers on your product. Bonus points if you have creative that showcases the product as a gift!
Cyber 5 is a conversion heavy time period. Customers have sought out the products they want and they are ready to convert on the best deals. But that’s not the end of the shopping period. In fact, 3 in 4 holiday shoppers will continue their holiday shopping after Black Friday and Cyber Monday. It’s important to maintain your holiday advertising strategies all the way through to Christmas Day. Check back for the next installment of our Holiday Advertising Series for more insights on how to drive traffic post Cyber 5.
Interested in more immediate expert strategy for holiday advertising on marketplaces? When you partner with Pattern you work with experienced advertisers who can tailor your advertising approach to your industry, category, and budget. Get in touch today.
Check out the rest our our Holiday Advertising Series:
Find relevant content to accelerate your ecommerce business. Stay on top of industry trends and best practices.
If you’re in the global ecommerce space, you are most likely aware of Amazon, and probably selling your products on the marketplace. With over $470 billion in sales in 2021 alone, Amazon stands as the third largest company in the world based on revenue. The ecommerce giant is a household name in the U.S. and working hard to grow its market share across five continents worldwide.
Having your products available on Amazon and being competitive there, though, are definitely two different things. If you want to really succeed on Amazon, you’ll need specialized insight into how Amazon works and how to make it work for you. So, for many brands, it’s a great idea to work with an Amazon Search Engine Optimization (SEO) agency.
At Pattern, Amazon SEO optimization service is one of our key competencies. We understand that technology, data-driven insights and expertise are the most important tools brands can leverage to win top listing spots on digital marketplaces. With expert teams and years of experience, we help brands conquer the Profitability Death Spiral as they compete with other products and sellers online. We offer Amazon SEO agency services as a core solution to brands that need more resources to get ahead.
An Amazon SEO agency serves brands by improving their products’ rank and listing performance on Amazon. They make strategic decisions about ad spending and placement that lead to higher traffic, conversions, and revenue for ecommerce brands.
A great Amazon SEO Agency partner will:
Unfortunately, many Amazon SEO agencies profit in unfair ways from your brands’ perceived success based on the ROAS numbers they provide. This is done through including branded search terms in ROAS reports, which naturally skew listing performance.
Let’s say, for instance, your brand is called “Annie’s” and you sell lollipops. Your brand has a very high likelihood of winning the top listing spots on Amazon for lollipop search terms that are paired with “Annie’s,” your brand name. So, SEO agencies will spend your ad money on those terms and report a very high ROAS.
To avoid scenarios like these, it’s best to look for an agency that either calculates their profits on metrics other than your ROAS scores or weighs branded search terms differently in the performance metrics reports. Regardless of your Amazon SEO agency’s cost structure, you should align onbranded search terms before committing to a scope of work.
A great indicator of a high-quality Amazon SEO agency is the level of insight they can provide into your competitors’ listing positioning and how it compares to yours. Data fanaticism is so important at Pattern that we’ve developed proprietary technology to display this exact information with precise detail for every brand we work with. In fact, you can find our free version here to see how you compare to some of your top competitors based on ASIN.
It’s certainly possible to improve your Amazon search performance with blind spending strategies. But a truly great solution will help you to know where your dollars are at their most powerful and competitive.
Amazon’s A10 algorithm prioritizes customer satisfaction—it wants to show consumers the best products that align with their search intent to improve conversions and sales. So, the best way to gain momentum on Amazon is to work on incremental wins.
Improving your performance on more obscure search terms that align with your customers’ search intent is a great way to increase ROAS for the long term. A10 will reward your success with better rankings on higher-volume search terms and the virtuous cycle can help you conquer your most-coveted listing spots. And the best part? This process of gaining momentum, if done right, will naturally decrease your ad spend over time as Amazon recognizes your value and works with you to keep your products at the top of consumers’ search results.
As an Amazon SEO specialist, Pattern knows how to help your brand win better success for long-term profitability on Amazon. With our data-driven tools and brilliant teams of ecommerce experts, we help brands with listing management, content optimization, Amazon ad strategies, and more.
Contact us to learn more about our SEO optimization services.
Entering the ecommerce landscape is a huge undertaking for any brand—it usually requires a large investment in resources and expertise to really be successful. Any brand can quickly get in over their heads trying to navigate the nuances of SEO, fulfillment and logistics, distribution control, listing optimization, and meeting the numerous other requirements and administrative tasks to show up well on marketplaces.
Unfortunately, because it’s so easy for third party, gray market, and unauthorized sellers to obtain and sell products online, many brands find themselves pressured to execute an ecommerce plan without the right resources to succeed on marketplaces and their other channels.
So, for brands looking to enter the ecommerce space or improve their current and future performance, it makes sense to partner with an ecommerce consultant.
Pattern’s global presence and proven success with hundreds of brands has allowed us to develop highly effective ecommerce consulting services. We can guide your brand to navigate issues both large and small in marketplaces worldwide. To maximize your ecommerce efforts, you’ll need to understand what an ecommerce consultant does and how to select one who drives the right value for your brand and products.
An ecommerce consultant is a specialist in the ecommerce space who can give you personalized guidance on how to market your products and grow their presence on digital marketplaces.
An ecommerce consultant should be able to analyze your brand, audience, category, opportunity, and current roadblocks and help you understand how to utilize your resources (or what resources are missing) to be most effective in capturing your opportunities in the ecommerce space.
Not sure how to evaluate a consultant? Here are 4 key attributes to look for as you make your choice.
At Pattern, we prioritize brand obsession for a reason—we know that a brand-centered mindset makes a crucial difference in the outcomes and results our partners achieve. So in our experience, when you begin your search for an ecommerce consultant, it’s important to look for a partner who is specialized in ecommerce, invested in the product, and passionate about helping brands build and improve their strategies. Typically, this means finding someone that consults exclusively for ecommerce marketplaces, rather than choosing a consultant who offers many different services.
It’s also important to avoid choosing a consulting partner who can’t deliver the right experience for your brand. The best indication of whether your potential consultant can do that is to review their history, data, and results with other brands. Ask if they’ve helped others in your selling category, if they’ve solved specific issues your brand is facing, and why they feel you are a good fit. The key is to leave the conversation feeling confident that you understand your consultants’ capabilities and whether or not they match up with your needs.
It’s best to pick a consultant who knows how to guide a brand onto and through multiple marketplaces worldwide. You’ll want to take a look at your long-term strategy and think about the regions and platforms you’re currently on and where you might want to take your brand in the future. If your consultant is truly great at what they do, they’ll be able to help you perform well enough with your current product roadmap that it’ll be a no-brainer to expand your presence at the right time.
The most effective partnership with an ecommerce consultant will be able to give you both recommendations and point you to solutions for making those changes in your planning, processes, and execution. Your time and money is valuable, so you want to make sure that you’re spending it as efficiently as possible as you follow your consultant’s advice. So, before you commit to an ecommerce consultant, ask about the resources and concrete solutions they typically recommend to the brands they work with.
Finding an ecommerce consultant that checks the boxes can be a difficult task. At Pattern, our entire focus and drive centers around giving brands the tools and resources they need to succeed on domestic and international ecommerce marketplaces.
With over 100 global ecommerce consultants across 10 global offices, we have the right tools to partner with brands across the world to achieve better ecommerce success. We give specialized advice, then make sure our partners have all the adequate SEO, social media, CRM, Amazon multi-channel fulfillment services, and ecommerce outsourcing services they need.
Interested in ecommerce consulting services? Set up a call here to learn what Pattern can do for your brand on global marketplaces.