Retail giant Debenhams was knocked out of the top ten for paid search visibility in women’s party wear during the Black Friday weekend of seasonal offers and sales.

Throughout the month of November, Debenhams, which offers a wide range of fashion and party wear, came out on top for its paid search visibility, beating John Lewis, House of Fraser and asos.

However, over the Black Friday weekend, Debenhams dropped off the top ten completely, with Marks and Spencer taking the top spot followed by new and lesser-known retailers such as and


Women’s party wear November (Click to expand images)

Women’s party wear over Black Friday weekend

The appearance of these brands, and popular online party wear brand Missguided, which also made the top ten for the weekend, suggests a substantial budget for top keywords for the holiday season, which cannot be sustained throughout the year.

Reiss gets ahead

In the men’s party wear results, high-end retailer Reiss made the biggest jump in PPC visibility, up 7.1% in November to 10.5% over the Black Friday weekend, leaping ahead of T.M. Lewin, Dobell and asos.

Moss, Marks & Spencer and Amazon remained firmly in the top three for paid search rankings during November and Black Friday through to Cyber Monday.

Men’s party wear November

Men’s party wear over the Black Friday weekend

The percentages are calculated by paid search agency Net Media Planet using an advertiser’s keyword coverage – in this case men’s suits and women’s party dresses – and the average position of all adverts, weighted by keyword search volume.

Top of the high street

The report revealed the top players in high street fashion online when it came down to keyword bidding over the Black Friday to Cyber Monday weekend.

Competition for the highest traffic-driving keywords traditionally skyrockets over the four-day weekend, with retailers ramping up paid search spend in their fight for consumer attention and higher revenue.

“It is interesting to see how few advertisers actually changed their paid search strategy over the Black Friday weekend”, said Luke Judge, sales and marketing director at Net Media Planet.

“It was pleasing to see some lesser-known brands taking advantage of the space left by the bigger brands, such as Debenhams, who would have naturally benefited from a surge in online traffic owing to their offline advertising campaigns.”

Plaudits were handed out to retailers that managed to tweak their paid search strategies and landing pages to reflect what consumers would be looking out for.

“Through deeper analysis, we found that retailers of men’s party fashion were significantly more active in adapting their strategies, including changing their ad copies to reflect their specific Black Friday and Cyber Monday promotions. It will be interesting to review how this changes as we get closer to Christmas itself.”