iProspect recently released their Retail Blueprint for 2012. This study highlights their findings from the 2011 holiday season and provides guidance for a successful 2012 online marketing program. Data from over 45 retailers was compiled and analyzed across three time periods: early (November 1 – 23), high (November 23 – December 22) and late (December 23 – January 8). Some of their key findings include:
- Q4 shopping queries increased 34% year-over-year across all devices, and increased 181% for mobile devices. In 2010, there was 1 day of online sales exceeding $1 billion. In 2011, there were 10.
- The early season observed the highest average-order-value (AOV). Bargain hungry consumers took advantage of early offers. With a $152 AOV, November should be considered a pivotal time period for retailers.
- November 24-28 delivered twice the average daily traffic and revenue. Thanksgiving through Cyber Monday reported the highest online shopping activity during the holiday season. Continued growth in online sales up until Christmas indicates shoppers are not only researching, but purchasing consistently throughout the high season.
- Early season promotions lead to increases in conversions and AOV, but at the cost of late season performance. Persistent, “always on” promotions drove flat results, as shoppers lacked a sense of urgency. On the other hand, large promotions failed to generate repeat conversions. Creating “value” (i.e. lower prices), rather than “sales” (i.e. offering discounts), will be something online marketers should consider in 2012.
With these insights, online marketers can start taking steps now to prepare for a successful 2012 holiday season. Creating and separating mobile campaigns, testing creative timing and messaging in the offseason, and integrating social and display programs are just a few initiatives online marketers should consider.
Want to read more holiday 2011 findings with recommendations for a successful 2012? Download the full report at http://www.iprospect.com/our-work/our-thinking