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Night Owls: One-Third Of Google Product Searches Happen In The Wee Hours
Mobile habits contribute to consumers starting holiday shopping earlier and researching at all hours of the night.
With devices at our fingertips round-the-clock, perhaps it shouldn’t shock anyone that product searches are occurring at all hours of the night. Would you guess that a full third of product searches on Google occur between 10:00 p.m. and 4:00 a.m., though?
That information has obvious ramifications for campaign scheduling, and points to other shopping trends marketers should be aware of going into the holiday season. Google commissioned a study by Ipsos MediaCT with an eye toward understanding the impact of consumer’s changing digital behavior on holiday shopping intentions.
Consumers Kick Off Holiday Shopping Earlier
No surprise, consumers are starting to research and shop earlier. More than half of the consumers surveyed said they plan to start researching holiday gifts before Thanksgiving. Over a quarter (26 percent) said they will have started before Halloween. These responses echo the findings of a recent Marin Software study on retailer holiday Facebook advertising, which suggested advertisers start campaigns in early November rather than waiting until Black Friday.
Google suggests that October and November are now crucial months for retailers to “reach shoppers online, being present with offers, information, how-tos and content” as the number of sources consumers turn to before making a purchase has jumped from five in 2010 to at least 12 in 2013.
Changing In-Store Digital Habits
Brick and mortar retailers that spot consumers on their phones while pursuing the aisles shouldn’t necessarily fear they’re losing those customers to online competitors. Google/Nielsen research found that shopper behavior is changing in this regard. Nearly half (46 percent) of shoppers ended up buying in-store in 2013, up from just 35 percent in 2011. A quarter of shoppers said they’ve used YouTube to search for a video related to a product they’re considering in-store. Last year, Google found that a third of consumers opt to use their phones to find product information rather than ask a sales clerk.
Here’s how the 2013 holiday shopping season looked. Online retailers, note the Cyber Monday effect took hold for not one day, but four. Mobile played a big role on Black Friday and the following Saturday — that trend is likely to continue.