Two trends have emerged this Halloween holiday season for search ads. Specialty retailers focusing on Halloween goodies have once again caught the interest of shoppers, but few retailers are doing well with both paid-search advertisements and product listing ads. Retailers seem to do better with one or the other.
AdGooroo, a Kantar Media group, analyzed the activity of text ads and product listing ads for 823 Halloween-related keywords from September 1 through October 15, including “Halloween costumes,” "Halloween decorations," "costumes," and "Halloween store." The results of this U.S. study is limited to Google desktop text ad and product listing ad activity on the 823 keywords studied.
Half of the top dozen advertisers on U.S. Google text ads during the past month-and-a half were specialty retailers that typically have high activity during the Halloween season and recede in paid-search rankings during the other months of the year.
Specialty costume retailers have a major presence on the search engines during the season, starting in August and peaking in October, and then are relatively quiet the rest of the year, according to Jim Leichenko, director of marketing at AdGooroo.
Minnesota-based specialty retailer HalloweenCostumes.com led the charge, capturing 16% of all text ad clicks, whereas Amazon.com ranked second with 13.6% click share. Specialty store Spirit Halloween came in at No. 3 with 13.2% click share.
Online store Spirit Halloween is owned by Spencer’s gifts and operates 1,200 seasonal retail stores in all 50 U.S. states and nine Canadian provinces, according to AdGooroo.
Party City came in with 6.8% click share, and WholesaleHalloweenCostumes.com with 6.4% click share, rounding out the top five.
Traditional brands — Pottery Barn Kids, Big Lots, and Grandin Road — took 2%, 1.7% and 1.6% click share, respectively. Those in the “Other” category generated less than 1%.
Few companies did well for both text and PLAs. Pottery Barn Kids, Chasing Fireflies and CostumeSuperCenter.com were among the top advertisers with both PLAs and text ads.
Spirit Halloween at 10% click share, Party City at 9.3%; and WholesaleHalloweenCostumes.com at 8.2% click share all made the top five most-clicked advertisers for both product listing ads and text ads.
Interestingly, HalloweenCostumes.com and Amazon ranked No 1 and No. 2 for text ad advertisers and No. 14 and No. 28, respectively, for product listing ads (PLAs). HalloweenCostumes.com took 1.3% click share and Amazon took 0.3% click share.
Multichannel retailers performed much better among PLAs, compared with text ads. Target ranked No. 4 in PLAs with an 8.6% click share. The Home Depot generated a 4.5% PLA click share on the Halloween keyword group, primarily advertising costumes along with decorations, for which it may be better known. Barnes & Noble took 1.8% click share and Walmart took 1.1% click share.