‘Tis the season for masses of people shopping online to buy those one-of-a-kind gifts for friends and family. In this post I will outline a few online shopping trends, and five tips that can help you maximize your revenue during this Christmas season.

  1. Timing is Key: According to the Atlas Institute’s 7th annual Holiday Online Shopping Report, timing is pertinent to the success of your marketing campaigns. Three things to remember:

    1. The peak online shopping day tends to be the second Monday before Christmas. This year that day falls on December 10th.
    2. Monday’s and Tuesday’s are typically the busiest days during the week for online shopping
    3. Consumers are shopping online more between the hours of noon and 4pm

    My advice to take advantage of the busy online shopping days and times is to increase your bids on specific keyword terms or long tail keywords during those days and times listed above. The thought behind this is that people have already thought about what they want to get their friends and family for Christmas, now they want to find the best deal and purchase the items in advance and allow plenty of time for shipping. You can also use ad scheduling within AdWords which allows you to automatically adjust your bids during certain days of the week and times during the day.

    I also recommend increasing your daily spending limit on these days only. If more people are online shopping the last thing you want is for your ads to be shut off early in the day.

  2. Pricing in Ad Text: A lot of retailers are offering free shipping, sales and discounted pricing during the holiday rush. Of course putting these promotional offerings into your ad text is a best practice, but what about the prices themselves? If you’re confident that you have cheaper prices than your competitors, displaying the price in your ad text could qualify customers who click your ad. If someone doesn’t want to pay a particular price, they won’t click on your ad at all, therefore you won’t be spending money on non-qualified clicks. But if they’re comfortable with your prices or have already shopped around, they’re more inclined to click on your ad and buy.

  3. Gifts for Under $25/50 – With the prices of gas increasing and the growing number of people you have to buy for, shoppers are looking for deals, and inexpensive gifts for friends and family. If possible, you should have a landing page of gifts under $25. Be sure to include this title in your ad text and take the customer directly to products that are under $25. Chances are users find a few items they can purchase under $25 each, therefore making their overall spend at your site higher.

  4. In-Store Pick Up: Most online retailers get credit for sales completed online but choose to pick up their items in-store. If you do offer in-store pick up, the week of December 17th is the best time to shout out this service in your ad text and landing page. More people this week get scared of shipping deadlines and would rather buy in-store or pick up their online purchase in-store rather than buying online and hoping it gets there by Christmas.

  5. Highlight Shipping Deadlines: If you don’t offer in-store pick up, highlighting shipping deadlines on your landing page and ad text is one way to make online shoppers feel more comfortable buying on your site the week before Christmas. If you’re offering special priced shipping, or guarantee shipping by Christmas, be sure to include that in your ad text

    Take these tips and be smart with spending this time of year. If you’re new to pay-per-click now is a great time to test your ad text, landing pages and keywords so you can make appropriate decisions for next year.