5 January 2015,
Organic Traffic

If you spotted Christmas ornaments one shelf over from Halloween decorations, that’s the Christmas Creep. But retailers aren’t the only ones pushing for an early start to the holidays, search marketers are doing it, too.


This chart from Kenshoo shows the gentle rise in Paid Search ad spend leading up to Thanksgiving 2012, 2013, and 2014. In 2012 and 2013, ad spend actually dips down a week and half before turkey day. But in 2014, ad spend continues to rise slowly before taking off about a week before the big day.

Not only did paid search marketers start earlier this year, they also spent a lot more than the year before. Thanksgiving Day spend was up 49% year-over-year. In 2013, Thanksgiving Day spend rose 65% year-over-year, so we didn’t see as much growth but that’s to be expected. A few years ago, we weren’t worried about trying to reach customers on turkey day but now that stores are opening their doors that evening, it’s a whole different bowl of stuffing.

Was the spend worth it?


It was. Thanksgiving Day search revenue was up 54% over last year. What’s really interesting is the increase in revenue on both Black Friday and Cyber Monday in spite of the fact that marketers didn’t increase spend all that much. Makes you wonder if they could have gotten away with spending a lot less across the board. Or perhaps it was the early spend that primed the pump for Black Friday weekend shoppers.

All of this adds up to a 34% increase in Paid Search Revenue over last year and that ain’t too shabby.

kenshoo giftDiversifying Ad Types

According to Kenshoo, retailers spent 2x more in Google Shopping Product Listing Ads in 2014 than they did in 2013. This is a trend they expect to see continue all the way up to Christmas.

Marketers also did fairly well with Facebook ads. Even though the average CPM was 7x higher than it was in 2013, the return on investment was 5x higher than last year.

As a special treat for the holidays, Kenshoo has put together an interactive infographic called “The 12 Tips of Christmas“.  Each gift box contains a tip to help you make the most out of search and social marketing this holiday season.

What’s in the box? Visit Kenshoo to find out.

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