December 7, 2020

Surging Online Holiday Sales: The Top 2 Ways Publishers Can Benefit

Despite economic difficulties this year, holiday sales are skyrocketing. And — unsurprisingly — there’s one place customers are going to get their gifts and decorations: online.

According to the National Retail Federation, online holiday sales will increase a whopping 20-30% in 2020, potentially reaching $218 billion — up from $168 billion last year. Overall holiday sales in December alone will see a 5.2% jump from 2019. 

In fact, 59% of consumers already started shopping for the holidays in November, and they plan to spend $998 on average on holiday-related purchases. As a result, 96% of retailers expect their online holiday sales to increase in 2020.

How’s that for some holiday cheer? For brands, at least.

Yes, we know this means great things for marketers, especially as they’re trying to recoup lost revenue from the start of the pandemic.

The question is: What does this surge of e-commerce activity mean for publishers this holiday season? And how can they get in on the action, helping brand partners launch the most effective campaigns and customers enjoy the most engaging experiences?

Let’s take a look.

Bolster your personalized email program

You know what’s annoying? Getting product recommendations that don’t apply to your interests at all. Or enjoying some of your favorite content only to get hit with an intrusive ad that interrupts your experience.

That’s why personalization is so crucial — especially for holiday shoppers, and especially in the midst of the pandemic. This year more than ever, people want trustworthy, relevant content that meets their needs in the right place at the right time.

Email is the key to providing that personalization. It’s an opt-in, direct-to-consumer channel that you can use to deliver all kinds of content to different audience segments. And you know you’re only reaching the most interested users since, by giving you their email address, they’re essentially saying: “Yes, I want you to send me content.”

As Jeeng CEO Jeff Kupietzky told PCMag:

“Personalization is absolutely critical. We know that personalized emails generate 26% higher open rates, improve click-thru by an average of 14%, and increase conversions by 10%. On the flip side, consumers have developed such high expectations for personalized content that 72% say they won’t engage with marketing content unless it’s customized to their interests.”

Diversify monetization channels to drive revenue from online holiday sales

Now is the time to expand into new revenue channels and double down on those that are already working. As Digiday reported, publishers’ ad businesses are rebounding at the end of 2020, with some expecting to enjoy their biggest quarter ever.

So look outside of those walled gardens of Facebook and Google, and start focusing on more direct channels that let you use your own data to deliver targeted ads — channels like email, push notifications, and news reader apps.

As Kupietzky told PCMag:

“Partnering with trusted publishers to advertise within their email newsletters is also a huge opportunity for brand marketers. Two out of three email subscribers will click on an ad in an email that comes from a trusted sender … With the proliferation of imposter ads for knock-off off products on Facebook and Instagram, people know they can trust emails they subscribe to for reliable and legitimate offers.”

It’s not too late to bolster your multichannel holiday marketing. Reach out today to hear how Jeeng can help.

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