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Retail Trends for Black Friday: What Prime Day Tells Us

It’s that time of year again—time to start planning your Black Friday shopping spree! Retailers have already started releasing information about this year’s deals, and there are some clear trends emerging. Here is what consumers and advertisers can expect from Black Friday based on the trends seen during Amazon Prime Day.

First, we can expect to see more doorbuster deals than ever before. Prime Day set a new record for the most deals offered in a single day, and retailers will be looking to top that during Black Friday by offering deep discounts on popular items in an attempt to attract more shoppers.

Second, we can anticipate seeing more online deals than in-store deals. This trend has been growing for several years now, and Prime Day was almost exclusively an online event. While Black Friday will still have some exclusive in-store deals, the majority of offers will likely be available online.

Finally, we can expect to see more emphasis on customer experience. Retailers are increasingly focused on creating a seamless and convenient shopping experience for their customers. This means offering things like free shipping, easy returns, and flexible payment options.

So what does all this mean for advertisers vying for market share?

Mobile ads will continue to be more productive this year—especially considering more people are now returning to an in-office environment. This also parallels the trends we’ve been seeing with greater performance from Google Shopping campaigns and less success with dynamic search. Advertisers should continue to lean into this trend and scale their Shopping campaigns.

Earlier shopping is evident this year as well. ‘Black Friday’ search volume jumped 65% from June to July in comparison to just 47% during the same period last year. Advertisers should try to take advantage of this early spike in interest by starting deals earlier.

Video consumption  also continues to rise year-over-year. Although more costly, advertisers should take advantage of this tactic more and push videos wherever possible. 

A final thought for advertisers is to be very aware of the competitive environment across display, video, and social ads. With midterm elections spiking ad spend in October, the overall cost to advertise will be higher for the entire fourth quarter. Our advice? Plan media budgets carefully to take advantage of key times while also avoiding the most costly windows leading up to the election.

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