Key Insights For Holiday Retail 2015

IBM Watson Trend identified the following shopping insights from this past Saturday and Sunday.

Online Sales on the Rise: Online sales for the weekend were up 25.5 percent over the same weekend in 2014.
Consumers Cash in on Weekend Deals: The average order value for the mobile and desktop shopper combined for the weekend were USD 130.57, up 5.5 percent over 2014.
Tablets Out Spend Desktops: Tablets average order value of $140.70 exceeded that of desktops, which ended the day at USD 138.30. Smartphone shoppers spent USD 111.29 per order, an increase of 6.1 percent over 2014.
Smartphones Shoppers Dominate: Smartphones remained the shopper’s device of choice. Smartphones accounted for 44 percent of all online traffic, more than three times that of tablets at 14.1 percent. Smartphones surpassed tablets in sales, driving 18.6 percent of online sales (up 65.7 percent over 2014) versus tablets at 17.7 percent.

According to Internet Retailer, Early reports suggest that online sales momentum generated over the weekend has carried over into Cyber Monday. Through 10 a.m. Eastern time on Monday, Adobe was reporting online sales for the day of USD 490 million, up 14% from the same day last year, with mobile accounting for 53% of traffic to online retail sites and 32% of sales.

Five Charts That Will Make You Rethink Your Search and Remarketing Campaigns

Share of Online traffic from Mobile is highest for different times of day on Cyber Monday and seasonal shopping days than from Desktop  as seen from Exhibit A. The trend is more pronounced in the case of Smartphones as can be seen from Exhibit B.

Exhibit A*

Online Traffic


Exhibit B*
Exhibit B1*



Though Smartphones dominated sales volume, Conversion Rates from Desktop was the highest on Black Friday at 6.2 percent followed by Tablets. Conversion rates also vary for time of day as can be seen from Exhibit  B1 for Cyber Monday.

Exhibit C*
Exhibit D*

Total Conversion Rates for November are higher than earlier months.

Exhibit E*
Key Takeaways For Advertisers
The build up of mobile traffic for different devices takes up at different times of the day, making it important for search marketers to target audiences across devices with cross-device optimization for the campaigns to be discovered across devices.

Early Read Analysis from Channel Advisor gives a surge in online traffic for Black Friday, Thanksgiving and Cyber Monday takes place at different times of day. The conversion rates for different devices vary for Time of Day, giving insights into the likelihood of audiences shopping for your products at a certain time of day, while they may have searched at a different time. A surge in Mobile traffic for seasonal shopping days takes place at different hours from surge in conversions, as Conversion rates peak at different hours, making it important for marketers plan the search and remarketing campaigns accordingly.



Plan your campaign objective for Mobile with search marketing to gain impression share for Time of Day when audiences are most likely to be looking for deals on different channels.

Since Conversion rates are higher for the seasonal shopping months, marketers need to optimize for Clicks in for online Shopping days when audiences are most likely to convert for each device.

While the conversion rates are higher for Desktop and Tablets, Smartphones dominate mobile shopping making it important for App messaging and campaigns to be coordinated with search and remarketing campaigns that promote your most searched products and categories.

*The data used in the charts is generated from IBM Watson Live trend report and needs to be verified for specific products and category and time of day may vary for different zones.