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DoubleClick Says Black Friday Was Good For Search Marketing

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DoubleClick has released figures relating to search marketing over the "Black Friday" post-Thanksgiving heavy shopping weekend that found traffic, conversions and spending was up among the search marketing campaigns it manages on behalf of clients.

The company compared activity among clients of its Performics subsidiary to normal daily activity. Only paid listing traffic was analyzed. Findings:

  • Average daily clicks nearly doubled, an increase of 85 percent.
     
  • Average cost-per-click dropped slightly, 2 percent, but total amount spent on ads was 82 percent higher, if I'm reading the press release correctly. In other words, terms were a little bit cheaper, but the amount of traffic they generated was up -- or clients were willing to let budgets go more -- or perhaps both.
     
  • Conversion rates were said to be nearly double, a 98 increase. Revenues were said to have more than tripled.
     
  • Sunday was tops in terms of traffic increase (92 percent rise and revenue (272 percent rise), but Friday had the best increase in conversion, a 259 percent rise.

My main quibbles with the figures:

  • Other factors could be responsible besides some consumer take-up of ads over the weekend. Performics might have a different mix of clients, better conversion techniques in place or clients may simply be willing to spend more -- though some of these differences will be slight, given the comparison to a "average" day occurs in a time period only a few months prior.
     
  • The press release talks of comparing the weekend shopping period with the "Q3 daily average" for 2004. In other words, the activity within this unique three-day shopping period in 2004 is compared to the average of activity for the entire July-September 2004 period. That's not an apples-to-apples comparison, though it does give some sense of how the weekend compares to normal daily activity. NOTE: Previously I'd written figures were compared to the Q3 average of 2003 and listed the months incorrectly as Oct-Dec. 2003.

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