According to Small Business Trends, consumer-facing businesses often earn up to 50% of their annual revenue in Q4 – but what does it take to build an eCommerce campaign that engages, converts and delivers during this 'Golden Quarter'.
In our latest workshop, ‘Black Friday and Beyond – Investing in eCommerce Campaigns that Deliver’, our experts shared the common approaches to - and challenges of - seasonal eCommerce campaigns, including the full ‘checklist’ of a great seasonal campaign, from the creative considerations to practical project delivery.
In this Article:
- The common approaches to – and challenges of – seasonal eCommerce campaigns
- The Building Blocks of a Great Seasonal eCommerce Campaign
- Black Friday and beyond – considerations before mapping your next campaign
READ OUR KEY LEARNINGS FROM THE SESSION BELOW, OR WATCH THE FULL WORKSHOP HERE
The common approaches to – and challenges of – seasonal eCommerce campaigns
From Black Friday to Christmas to Mother’s Day, such seasonal marketing campaigns can help eCommerce businesses increase brand awareness and boost revenue.
However, with amplified competition in an already crowded digital space and ever-changing advances in technology, executing a strong seasonal eCommerce campaign that really delivers can be easier said than done.
Below our experts discuss some of the common approaches to – and challenges of – seasonal eCommerce campaigns:
What makes a seasonal campaign distinct from an ‘always-on’ strategy?
Scott highlights, “the two are distinct but it’s important to think about how they integrate and complement each another.”
He adds, “your always-on activity can help lay some groundwork ahead of a seasonal campaign, by keeping your brand front of mind with its target audience or raising awareness of upcoming promotions.
“But in terms of what makes a seasonal campaign distinct from always-on activity, is the heightened level of competition during that time period, the intensity of promotion that is happening across the space, and obviously, the change in pricing strategy.”
View eCommerce 101: What Brands Need to do Right Now for a Stronger 2023
The major challenges of executing a strong seasonal ecommerce campaign
Dom says, “we often see challenges stem from not having those basic elements done properly, such as:
- A poorly optimised shopping feed
- Non-existing PMAX set up
- Creative assets in the wrong format or dimensions
- Not running A/B testing on your creative assets
- Campaign objectives incorrectly set up against what you’re trying to achieve.”
Also, “we often see an over-reliance on one or two platforms when it comes to eCommerce activity – there are more channels than just Google or Meta.”
Adding to this, Rupesh highlights, “when adding other channels into the mix, these must be measured and proven out thoroughly.
The use of tools such as Google Analytics is helpful from an optimisation perspective, as it’s quick and easy to track – however, this data isn’t 100% accurate due to things like cookie deprecation or Apple’s ATT prompt.
The use of advanced measurement solutions such as Marketing Mix Modelling can help gain a wider and more truthful understanding of customer behaviour, competitor activity and the actual impact campaigns are having against your KPI’s.”
View our Round-up: 5 Ways to Get More from your Marketing Data
The Building Blocks of a Great Seasonal eCommerce Campaign
Run private sales in advance
By creating a sense of exclusivity through private offers and promotions during specific holidays, businesses can start to build brand loyalty and increase the chances of customer retention.
In relation to Black Friday campaigns, Dom says, “launching a private sale exclusively for customers on your database means you don’t have to promote huge discounts on your channels for an excessive amount of time, thus avoiding the risk of harming your brand’s value.
In addition, this means you don’t need to spend as much on advertising to achieve your revenue goals during this period.”
Ensure your in the ‘right place’ to deliver a seasonal campaign
Scott highlights the importance of, “understanding where your customers might be and ensuring some sort of consistency with your brand delivery – yet this experience may differ slightly to suit the type of audience on a specific channel.
He adds, “with most searches starting on marketplaces such as Amazon, brands must take the opportunities available to them on those platforms, whether that's through the brand registry programme and ensuring that they've got a fully optimised store to capture that search demand and drive consumers to their brand assets.
Capitalise on the ‘research period’ before the seasonal sale
Imogen says, “taking Black Friday as an example, there's usually that period before – in October – where you will see low revenue as audiences are holding back on purchasing before the sales.
So, often brands will pull back on marketing budget during this time and save until November. However, there's a lot of traffic and high intense searches to capitalise on in the run up to the peak sales period – particularly unbranded and generic terms.”
She adds, Black Friday traffic is much more expensive with the heightened competition, so if your putting budget behind your eCommerce campaigns earlier on, it will make huge difference on the cost-per-click you’re achieving in November on those unbranded searches.
View our Round-up: How to Leverage PPC Insights to Support your Wider Marketing Strategy
Black Friday and beyond – considerations before mapping your next campaign
Dom says, “manage the creative fatigue of your ads, see which ones are performing best against one another and refresh them when they need to be refreshed.”
Rupesh says, “prior to Black Friday or any seasonal campaign, run a pre-sale to start building a retargeting audience while it’s cheaper.
Secondly, try advanced plus shopping campaigns on Meta – although you may lose some control on this activity, there are many things you can still do from a creative or copy standpoint.”
The benefits of external support
Scott adds, “if you haven’t done much in this space before, partnering with an agency like any of the experts in this session, will allow you to tap into experiences across different brands and retailers and expedite your learning curve as a business, meaning a better chance of success.”
If you're investing in a seasonal ecommerce strategy this year, make sure you're getting the most from your time. GO! offer cost-free agency recommendations, pitch management, and more - get in touch to get started.