Holiday Marketing

3 E-commerce Trends for This Holiday Season

Sebastian Oberländer
Sebastian Oberländer
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Smart marketers plan their Black Friday and Christmas campaigns many months ahead. As we showed last year, the big shopping days cast their shadows weeks in advance and require some lead time, especially for brands that need to raise awareness before they can start selling.

So which 3 e-commerce trends will dominate this fall season? We analyzed data from GWI’s commerce report to find out.

1. Simple and clear store navigation is becoming increasingly important

Mobile shopping is now standard for many online users, and accounts for well over half of all online sales. On these small devices, navigation must be adapted to make it easy and user friendly. Product information must be readily accessible, and entering and editing sizes, quantities, as well as personalized product recommendations – all this should be effortless and with short loading times. According to GWI, usability is important for 45% of respondents,  almost as much or more than the importance of price (48%) and discounts (43%). A fast app/website and ease of navigation saw very high increases of 9% and 8%, respectively. This season, online retailers should prioritize optimizing their digital shopping experience.

2. Eco-friendly features are more important than price

Across several categories (food, cleaning products, household goods, clothing), about half of consumers research environmentally friendly options. The use of ecological materials (important to 64%), no harmful chemicals (63%), environmentally friendly shipping (63%), and reusability (58%) are the most significant factors. They are even more relevant than cost (42%) when making a purchase decision. Online retailers who meet these criteria should emphasize them prominently on their website. In addition, sustainable packaging or eco- friendly shipping can also be implemented, which will certainly win favor with eco-conscious customers. 

3. Specific targeting for each generation

Most marketers already know that campaigns should be ideally targeted by age groups in order to improve performance. However, optimization should not be just about which media assets to use. Different target audiences will recommend a brand for different reasons. For example, Gen Z prefers exclusive content and the feeling of being part of the brand, while Gen X and Baby Boomers care about rewards such as discounts or gifts. Millennials become brand ambassadors when a brand improves their online image. These drivers should be considered in campaign implementation. Instead of a single campaign with the same incentives for all age groups, four sub-campaigns can be implemented – as long as the planning is done in time.

The trend towards trustworthy environments is also continuing in e-commerce: the GWI study showed that more and more users are discovering products via news sites and publications (+4%).

Want to get more insights? We conducted a large consumer survey for last Black Friday and the holiday shopping season. Download the detailed report to get all the tips and insights for your upcoming holiday campaigns.

Sebastian Oberländer

Sebastian Oberländer

As Senior Sales Manager and Native Advertising expert in the Munich office, Sebastian is responsible for mid-market clients with a special focus on online retailers. In the heart of the Bavarian capital, he consults exciting brands in Germany, Austria and Switzerland to ensure they get the most out of Native Advertising. Prior to Outbrain, Sebastian worked at Vibrant Media.