Last year, UK consumers spent an estimated £810 million during Black Friday, making it one of the busiest pre-Christmas shopping days. With two weeks to go until Black Friday 2015, and as millions of UK shoppers are set to flock online once again, it is important brands are present at the right time and in the right place to take advantage of the spike in sales. 

The UK Bing Ads Retail Insights Report revealed that Black Friday is mobile day. Based on research from 33% of internet retail users who used Bing in 2014, we uncovered that mobile searches are expected to increase nine times the day ahead of Black Friday and ten times on the day itself. Demonstrating the increasing trend of people seeking to get more done on the go with the rise of mobile shopping search, it is therefore crucial that brands establish a strong mobile strategy that’s audience specific. After all, knowing how and when consumers are searching means brands can think beyond the search box to ensure cut through during the festive shopping frenzy.

So, to make your Black Friday search strategy as successful as possible, and importantly bring in the best ROI results, here are a few tips and tricks to make sure you’re mobile ready:

Make sure your website is mobile optimised and ready for the expected influx of mobile searches during the festive period

Our report found last year found that over half (54%) of all retail intent searches were made from mobile and tablet devices during Black Friday, with more than one in four of these (41%) coming from a smartphone. Retailers therefore need to make sure that their campaign is optimised for the masses to search via mobile devices. Time is of the essence with regards to purchasing decisions, so make sure your website displays crucial information that will help consumers purchase more efficiently.

‘Generation X’ is also the most investigative when it comes to online shopping around Black Friday, with more than 50% of retail search queries on the Bing Ads Network coming from 35-64 year olds. Marketers therefore need to ensure they are targeting content and deals to specific audiences in the right way to help improve click through to purchase. By showing your audience you understand them, you will help to build brand loyalty.

Take advantage of the pre-deal investigative shoppers through planned marketing 

With over 20% of consumers having begun Christmas shopping in or before September, brands must ensure to engage early shoppers as soon as possible. Make sure to have deals front and centre on your website, including seasonal advertorial copy ahead of Black Friday, to help plant the shopping seeds ahead of the 27th November.

Marketers should also consider device specific campaigns, with target content to help reach the right people at the right time, on the right device. Our research shows that 83% of shoppers purchase jewellery on a mobile device, with just 12% choosing a PC to buy it. However, this behaviour varies depending on retail category, with nearly half (48%) of consumer’s instead choosing a PC to buy clothes – important considerations when choosing what deals to place upfront on your mobile site.

Manage search budgets carefully in the last week of November to ensure it’s not exhausted before the end of the day when many conversions take place

When creating this year’s search campaign for Black Friday and the Christmas season beyond, make sure to analyse last year’s campaign and focus on what worked well and what didn’t. A few handy tips to make sure your campaign brings success include:

  • Make sure to build out your Christmas keyword list with new products and generic keywords 
  • Allocate additional budget to accommodate for any expected rise in click volume.
  • Monitor your brand’s ad position and adjust bids to maximise click volume and CTR.
  • Begin testing your ad copy in advance and pause underperforming ads.

Timing is key, make sure you understand when your customers are searching

The increasing trend of people seeking to get more done on the go via mobile is clear but prioritising mobile alone is not enough. Brands need to ensure they understand when shoppers are picking up their mobiles to search to ensure they’re providing the right content at the right time. 

And finally, don’t forget about the aftermath

Post Black Friday, and after the last shipping date has sailed, ensure to drive traffic to your brand’s brick-and-mortar stores to help continue sales the few days before Christmas. Don’t forget that post-season sales continue right after the Christmas holidays and as before, make sure to grab those keen sales driven consumers as soon as possible.