prime-day-halo-effect-and-6-other-trends-to-watch-for-back-to-school-search-marketing

Amazon Prime Day is the hard start to the back-to-school shopping season – this year more than ever.

But the bigger trend is that Prime Day is no longer confined to Amazon. It pervades the entire retail industry, with shopping interest heightening across multiple marketing channels.

Including Google search.

My colleagues and I took a look at some of the biggest trends influencing back-to-school search marketing, from Prime Day and its halo effect, to newer Google Ad formats and targeting capabilities. Here are some results of Prime Day’s impact in the Google search channel, what they mean for the coming weeks and other major trends to capitalize on this back-to-school season and beyond.

1. Prime Day led to high search interest on Google

It’s no surprise Prime Day hype reached a new high this year, and Google Trends demonstrates it. Google Trend scores are relative to one another, meaning a 100 – which occurred during this year’s Prime Day week – represents the peak popularity of a search term over a period of time. Relatively speaking, searches for “Prime Day deals” on Google were 26 percent less popular in 2018.

Google continues to chip away at traditional shopping ads that display for broad queries on mobile. The replacement is the more visually engaging Showcase Shopping ad. This trend accelerated prior to the holiday season last year, meaning this is the first back-to-school shopping season where Showcase ads will be a major traffic driver.

Here’s a look at Showcase Shopping ad impressions for a sample of several hundred retailers over the past 18 months:

Showcase Shopping how-to’s I’ve shared on Search Engine Land for help on navigating the format.

7. Back-to-school is a key use case for Detailed Demographics

Back-to-school is also a good time to use Google’s Detailed Demographics with your shopping campaigns. Of particular interest during this season is the segment for parents—broken down by parents of infants (0-1), toddlers (1-3), preschoolers (4-5), grade-schoolers (6-12), and teens (13-17).

If your catalog spans all these age groups as well as adults without kids, it might make sense to segment your campaigns or ad groups by demographic targets, to hone in on the products most relevant to each audience.

Back to school, back to holiday planning

Once back-to-school reaches its end in September, the year-end holidays will enter the consumer conscience. Drive the best performance from your back-to-school campaigns now, while starting to shift your time into holiday planning mode. More to come in my column as the holiday season nears.


Opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Marketing Land. Staff authors are listed here.



About The Author

Sidecar. He analyzes digital marketing performance and strategic direction for large retailers across verticals, focusing on data visualizations and advanced account segmentation. He is responsible for deriving meaning from numbers and determining how to use those insights to drive marketing decision making. Steve is especially close to Google’s new innovations impacting Shopping and paid search. He has a master’s degree in data analytics and contributes to Search Engine Land as well as Sidecar Discover, the publication by Sidecar that covers research and ideas shaping digital marketing in retail.




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