- Three mobile ad formats — mobile shopping ads, dynamic ads for products on social media and video ads — have shown strong spending growth during this year's holiday shopping season. Shopping campaigns on mobile grew 44% on Thanksgiving and 43% on Black Friday from a year earlier, faster than other devices, according to a study by digital ad platform Kenshoo.
- Spending on dynamic ads for products on social media grew more than 60% on Thanksgiving and almost 50% on Black Friday from a year earlier. The ad format, which aims to generate a direct response from a viewer, has resonated with consumers, Kenshoo said.
- Video ad spending grew almost 40% on Thanksgiving and nearly 50% on Black Friday. Video ads continue to grow outside of branding campaigns, Kenshoo said.
Kenshoo's report indicates mobile ads are a key part of the holiday marketing strategy for brands and retailers as shoppers shift their online buying to smartphones and tablets. Lower-priced mobile shopping ads pushed down the average search cost-per-click (CPC) by 8% on Thanksgiving and 10% on Black Friday from a year earlier. Those declines are consistent with a trend seen in Q3 2018, when the average CPC for search advertising fell by 15%, Kenshoo said. E-commerce search advertisers boosted their Thanksgiving spending by 20%, exceeding the 16% increase for Black Friday, to reach shoppers looking for early deals.
While CPCs declined, search click prices increased between Nov. 1 and Nov. 21 from $0.27 to $0.41 on Thanksgiving and $0.50 on Black Friday. The increase indicates marketers were more willing to pay for ad placements that reached shoppers who were more likely to make a final purchase. Conversion rates rose from 4% during the three-week ramp-up period to 5.6% on Thanksgiving and 8.3% on Black Friday, which supports the strategy of reaching audiences on those two days, Kenshoo said.
E-commerce ad spending surged threefold on Black Friday from the average daily spending during October as more marketers bought ads on Amazon. Spending was also 2.1 times higher than during the November ramp-up period. That spending boosted sales 348% from an average day in October, and 229% from the November ramp-up. The improvement in sales led to a 55% jump in ROI while cost-per-acquisition (CPA) dropped 16% from October. ROI increased 41% and CPA decreased 14% from the November 1-21 average, Kenshoo said.