PMX Holiday Update: Tuesday & Wednesday For The (Sales Growth) Win!

Consumers could hardly wait to begin their holiday shopping this year – so they didn’t!  PMX Agency’s clients started the season strong, seeing paid search sales growth of almost 16% for the first three weeks of November.  And then, this week kicked in. With many brands launching Black Friday offers the weekend before Thanksgiving – or offering some kind of promotion all week – paid search saw significant year over year sales growth on Tuesday and Wednesday before Thanksgiving – up 37% and 43% versus 2017 respectively.  This micro trend has real implications on planning for next year, in both promotion and media budget strategy. If consumers can’t wait to shop, then we need to be there! While many brands simply launched their Black Friday offers early, others started the week with smaller discounts, allowing for more margin in those sales earlier in the week. This makes this earlier sales growth season even more impactful to the entire season and brands’ bottom line.

Thanksgiving continued to be a critically important day for paid search, with PMX clients seeing SEM sales growth at 22% year over year.  This growth was driven by PLAs on mobile devices, with orders up a hugely significant amount – 70% year over year!

While we saw more modest topline SEM sales growth on Black Friday, it’s important to dig into where growth did come from: mobile, mobile, mobile.  That wasn’t unique to paid search, or PMX clients: Adobe reported its first $2 billion sales day in e-commerce on mobile devices on Black Friday.

Conversely, there simply isn’t the same kind of growth to be had any more on desktop on Black Friday.  Digging one step further, with the mobile SERP displaying dozens of PLA spots now, SEM sales growth came from mobile PLAs specifically – up over 118% versus Black Friday 2017!

Some other quick takeaways from the holiday shopping season so far:

  • PMX clients are still seeing growth in traditional non-brand text ads, with orders up 31% there on Thanksgiving.
  • It must be said: CPCs are up too – across the board – no question.  It takes bid indexing to get exposure at the right times in the right places during these peak shopping days, simple as that.
    • Brand/trademark term CPCs are up a modest 10% for PMX clients, though, which is a great win for this holiday season.
  • AOVs are up consistently all month long.  Predictions for the holiday season were strong going into this week, and the AOV driven in paid search is truly indicative of a strong economy and consumer confidence.  Once a real strategic concern on mobile and PLAs, AOVs on Black Friday alone grew by 36%.

We’re off to a great start, my friends. We will continue this conversation as the season progresses. What other days will become surprise opportunities or growth drivers?

We’ll be the first to tell you.

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