Last week, Jen discussed how to utilize Google’s Merchant Center to make your ecommerce PPC campaigns stand out this holiday season. Now that you have your product extensions and product listing ads set up, what else can you do in the closing days of the holiday season to really make your products and company stand out. With a few last-minute creative promotions in addition to some highly enticing ad copy and landing pages, there is still significant potential for this holiday season.

Hi, I am Caleb, and I am a last-minute holiday shopper. Along with being a last-minute holiday shopper, I am also an avid Internet buyer because I live in the Midwest and let’s be honest, who wants to go out in the snow and cold when it is so nice and warm in the house and on the couch? And guess what all of you Internet marketers, I am just one of the vast number of last-minute, Internet shoppers.

So, how do you target someone like me? First off, I’ve got an idea of what I want and a price range (this is where the product extensions and product listings come into play to weed out irrelevant traffic). Second, I’m online, so I feel like I should be able to find a pretty competitive deal or promotion no matter the product I’m looking to purchase. Third and last of all, I need this to be simple… I’m running out of time here! Keep these themes in mind as I provide some ideas for your holiday ad and landing page brainstorming session.

Writing the Ad

The Promotion

The holiday season is a time of year that requires some of your best promotional ideas. So, as we come to the end of this year’s peak shopping days, I recommend implementing a unique deal that can really entice a potential buyer as he or she frantically scans for the perfect last-minute gift. Free shipping, 10% discounts, and coupons go a long way to boost conversions at other times of the year, but you may need a little something extra for the holiday. Perhaps your business can offer a guaranteed delivery date, a free gift box included, or an already prepared holiday gift set (even more enticing if you are able to offer a more traditional promotion like free shipping as well).

The Plan and Audience

At this point, start launching those ads that speak to your audience. You may have missed the holiday go-getters and the hardcore bargain shoppers, but keep an eye out for the last-minute people like me. We are just waiting for your advertisements to call out to us. Lure us onto the product page with an ad that says you have the perfect deal for me, the last-minute shopper.

And what about those people that just plain forgot about someone on their list? It happens to the best of us, but this leaves the perfect opportunity for your ad copy to come in and promise the perfect fix for their forgetfulness. Lucky for them, you have a promotion in line that might even reward them for their forgetfulness! With a clever ad headline and benefit driven ad copy, you’ll be sure to drive some last-minute conversions.

In short, whatever your promotion plan, make sure it speaks to the right buyers motivation. The late to the game shopper who needs a delivery guarantee is in a much different mindset than the early shopper out to get the most popular product.

The Competition

Need some ideas? Don’t be shy to look at what your competitors are offering in these final days. Take the time to internally evaluate if you are in the position to offer a better promotion. If nothing else, ensure that your ad copy calls out what makes your product, company, or promotion better and different than your competitors’.

Extra Incentives

Let’s not forget what the holiday season is about either. Go ahead and romanticize this time of the year and illustrate how your company is getting into the “holiday spirit.” Use language in the ad copy that speaks to the values of the holiday – a time to spread joy and cheer, to give and get, to spend time with family and friends, and to enjoy the celebration of the end of one year and the beginning of another. Thus, to elaborate, your ad text and promotions should align with the searcher’s holiday sentiment. Creatively insert the words that will remind the shopper of the holiday season and the reason for buying and giving gifts.

Additionally, a promotion that gives as much as it gets will hold more value in the holiday shoppers mind. Therefore, connect your business with a charity these final days of the year and really get involved with the holiday spirit. Not only will customers respond well to your business’s generosity, but also I can speak from experience in saying that charitable advertising campaigns are some of the best and most creative marketing strategies to design and implement.

December 26

Just as you have targeted the early bird shoppers, the bargain shoppers, and the last-minute shoppers, your advertising campaign should also be prepared with promotions that target clearance shoppers as well as those who are spending holiday money and gift cards. Sure ‘Black Friday’ and ‘Cyber Monday’ are known as the biggest shopping days of the year, but there are many people just waiting for the days after Christmas and around New Year’s.

Optimizing the Landing Page

Quick and Easy

You have designed the perfect promotion and implemented a clever and innovative PPC ad campaign. Don’t make the mistake of losing conversions due to a convoluted and tedious landing page. Stick to landing page best practices and oversimplify the conversion process. Make certain that the product and it’s price is very clear, the terms of the promotion is both easy to find and easy to read, and that the conversion action is a simple procedure for the potential buyer.

Winter or Holiday Theme

These last “holiday theme” tips actually echo a post that I wrote earlier this year on how to optimize summer landing pages.

  • Make your ads and landing pages relevant to the holiday, utilizing winter/holiday themes and colors.
  • Insert ads and landing pages that express the winter mindset. Giving, joy, celebration, tradition, and friends and family are words that catch the eyes of an audience with holiday warmth on their minds.
  • Make your ad benefits winter and holiday-related. Products, catalogues, and specials should read gifts, wish lists, and holiday specials.

Hopefully, this blog post will inspire you for the final days of the holiday season along with give you some winter inspiration as we welcome the new year. Let me know if you have any promotions planned (or are planning) for the next couple of weeks and how your ad copy is reaching out to those last-minute shoppers like myself. Continue enjoying the holidays and be careful out there!