With Amazon Prime moving from July to October in 2020, the holiday shopping season will begin earlier this year.
“Prime Days’ timing later in the year creates a pull to move aggressive holiday campaigns earlier, and opens the door for deals from retailers of all sizes,” according to Marshal Cohen, noted retail analyst and chief industry advisor, retail, at market research firm NPD.
Including “Prime Days into the holiday season will play to this year’s emphasis on shopping early being better,” added Cohen.
Will Christmas Shopping begin before Halloween?
Following this trend, home improvement retailer Home Depot is planning on offering Black Friday prices from November 8th. Consumer electronics retailer Best Buy has said that its holiday sales will begin in October.
In addition to the earlier start of the holiday shopping season, e-commerce sales are expected to increase by 25% to 35%, this holiday season. This compares to the 14.7% sales increase in 2019, according to Deloitte’s annual holiday retail forecast.
That said, more brick and mortar stores are closing on Thanksgiving this year. Furthermore, many physical stores will be limiting entry to support social distancing. Therefore, these trends will make Black Friday and Cyber Monday important online shopping events despite the earlier shopping.
Therefore, we’re expecting an increase in Q4 holiday ad prices, though the longer holiday shopping season will spread out that increase, moderating it. Some product categories and regions might not experience an increase in ad prices.
Shopping with Friends, But Apart
One way for retailers to enable social shopping is through social commerce functionality from companies like Gamitee and Squadded. These companies have developed technology that enables friends to shop together online while being socially apart. This lets shoppers get recommendations from friends and family in real-time. These technologies can also provide mobile and e-commerce retailers with valuable shopping insights. Though it might be too late to integrate these offerings by Black Friday, digital retailers should be considering them for 2021.
According to research from 3D & augmented reality (AR) commerce solutions provider Vertebrae, the ability to virtually place items in real-life environments (57%), virtually try on products (39%), and flip or spin digital renderings of items to inspect details (63%) were ranked higher than reviews (31%) and personalized recommendations (15%). This data shows that users are taking advantage of the benefits made possible by digital shopping.
Despite the growth in digital commerce, omnichannel is a bright spot for brick and mortar retailers. (There’s a reason why Amazon bought Whole Foods for $13.4 Billion in 2017.)
Buy Online Pickup in Store (BOPIS), which increased in popularity during COVID-19, is growing exponentially in 2020. EMarketer is predicting that U.S. click-and-collect e-commerce will increase by 60.4% this year to $58.52 billion.
With the other platforms, we can run similar creative ads, slightly altered across most of the other platforms.
“Black Friday lines won’t disappear, but we expect lines of consumers waiting for store openings will be replaced by long queues of cars eagerly waiting for buy-online-pickup-curbside purchases to be placed in their vehicle,” said Stephen Baker, vice president, industry advisor for The NPD Group.
With the holidays quickly approaching, reach out to the Creative Clicks team to optimize your marketing programs based on our extensive mobile and e-commerce experience.