The annual rush for Christmas gifts is reportedly fuelling a huge uplift in ad competitiveness across several popular product categories in Europe.

With brands looking to capitalise on the festive shopping crowds, a review of sector-specific trends by software and analytics platform Turn shows a huge spike in the number of companies vying for online ad space in Q4 2014 compared to Q3 2014.

Ad space for gifts has seen a 27% increase in competitiveness this quarter on findings in Q3 2014. Jewellery is said to have followed a similar pathway, also seeing a rise in competitiveness, and with a similar uptick being witnessed in February there is evidence that Christmas is way up there with Valentine’s Day in the jewellery sales calendar.

Apparel misses out 

Along with jewellery and gift merchants, fashion retailers will be among the many companies hoping that Christmas and key events like Black Friday and Cyber Monday will have boosted their coffers. 

However, findings from Turn indicate that competitiveness for fashion ad space in Q4 2014 is not as fierce as at the same time last year – hinting at a degree of consolidation in the market.

This is not thought to be having an adverse effect on the ad industry, though. While the number of apparel firms competing for ad space is slightly smaller than in 2013, spend on digital ads is moving in the opposite direction. 

Advertisers in the sector are said to be spending 30% more on marketing their products in Q4 2014 than in Q3 2014, possibly in an effort to capitalise on the rush for deals.


The rise of programmatic buying means that ad competitiveness is being seen across a much wider range of channels than last year, as Turn MD EMEA, Pierre Naggar, explains. 

“As brands and agencies increasingly search for customers across the media landscape, the programmatic marketplace is growing rapidly beyond traditional display advertising. Now advertisers in Europe are seeing competition across all channels including mobile, video and social, not just display.”

Although competition across channels is spreading, the trend appears to be staying in the same place.

“This suggests that media planners are starting to use data to plan spend and are also hosting multichannel campaigns,” commented Naggar. “All non-display channels have reached similar levels of competition in Europe and this is something that we are not seeing anywhere else in the world.”