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5 Digital Marketing Tips For The Holiday Season

Last year, November and December sales exceeded $690 billion, according to the National Retail Federation, and roughly 20% of those sales were made online. 

Let’s not forget that for many consumers, the sales journey spans a myriad of touchpoints, from in-app to on the web to in-store. These savvy shoppers are more valuable, too. Harvard Business Review found that multichannel customers spend 4% more in-store and 10% more online than single-channel customers.

Marketers should complement their in-store marketing plan with a strong digital strategy that not only encourages lapsed customers to complete a purchase, but also drives brand awareness and brings new users to the site. 

Here are some recommendations on how to make the most of your holiday campaigns, based on 2017 data pulled from our platform: 

Expect an increase in CPMs during the holiday season. CPMs saw a 48% increase across all channels throughout the season, with levels already increasing in October. The largest increase came from Desktop (54%), followed closely by Mobile (52%). Don't be alarmed by these high CPMs. Due to the busy holiday season, these should translate into a higher volume of sales and total revenue.

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Draw users to your site early on with prospecting campaigns. Prospecting media spend sawa 28% month-over-month increase in November, which contributed to a 25% uptick in impression volume. Prospecting campaigns can enhance the size of your audience pools so that new users are brought to your site and can also be retargeted with more personalized ads later.

Make mobile a priority. Mobile prospecting campaigns earned an 81% increase in return on ad spend in November, and mobile retargeting campaigns delivered strong click-through rates throughout the season. This, coupled with the fact that Salesforce forecasts mobile traffic and orders to outpace desktop for the first time, confirms that mobile should be a focus for your holiday strategy.

Focus the majority of your retargeting efforts in November and December. Last November, retargeting spend increased 97% month-over-month, which led to an 85% increase in sales and an 80% boost in total revenue generated. We also saw a ~30% increase in spend from October to December, as consumers continue to purchase gifts leading up to last ship dates (between Dec. 20-22).

Increase spend during Cyber Monday and Black Friday to stay competitive. Cyber Monday saw the biggest spike in daily spend levels ,with a whopping 430% increase from the previous week. Black Friday came in second, with a 313% increase in daily spend. Total sales and revenue on both days were approximately 5x the average daily sales and revenue of the month leading up to the holiday, so plan your budgets accordingly.

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