We're not going to talk about anything new today. Instead, we wanted to share industry statistics and our own findings for this 2010 holiday season. Everything reported is for online sales or statistics.
These statistics were reported from comScore.com
Thanksgiving Day (Nov. 25) $407M, up 28%
Black Friday (Nov. 26) $648M, up 9%
Cyber Monday (Nov. 29) $1,028M (that's a Billion!) 16%
Green Monday (Dec. 13) $954, up 12%
Free Shipping Day (Dec. 17) $942M, up 61%
The week of December 17 (Free Shipping Day) saw 52.7% of online transactions with free shipping. comScore also reported that there was a greater trend for online buyers to wait until Free Shipping Day before making the final sale. This is a clear indication that free shipping is a deal winner when selling online.
On December 14, comScore reported that two-thirds of holiday shoppers were not finished with their gift buying on December 14th. It was reported that 33% didn't have the money to buy the gifts they wanted and 32% didn't have the time to finish shopping yet. Another 11% were waiting for better deals at the last minute. These three survey reports lead us to believe that next year you really should have a full product catalog online and provide easy purchase and delivery methods. There are creative ways to solve these 3 situations.
comScore provided us with another set of valuable survey results this season, too. They asked 500 people how social media recommendations influenced their gift buying. 33% of respondents said that it helped them, while 24% said it didn't help and 43% said it had no bearing at all. Of the 33% that said social media helped them, they also reported that consumer-generated reviews on a website were their biggest aide to purchase decisions, followed by expert reviews. Additionally, users were lurking on Facebook Business pages looking for deals and promotions, reading their friend's status updates for recommendations, and lastly, watching product review videos.
It was expected that social media would play an important role in the Holiday 2010 Season. It didn't disappoint us, weighing in with 33% influence on the first year it was measured. For 2011, you need to get your game face on early and learn the correct ways to gain online reviews, get Facebook Fans, and create videos.
eBay reported that Cyber Monday sales jumped 146% for their mobile website. Reviewing their online data, it's clear to see that eBay shoppers live in and around metropolitan areas of the USA. They have a cool interactive map available here: ebayinc.com/mobilecommerce.
You will have to elect the Jewelry, Gems, Watches category to see what we are looking at as we write this.
Here are the eBay mobile statistics:
Thanksgiving Day (Nov. 25) $148,857
Black Friday (Nov. 26) $152,153
Sunday, November 28 $220,763
Cyber Monday (Nov. 29) $198,462
Monday December 6 $202,239
Sunday December 12 $339,448 (this was the busiest eBay day of all 2010)
Green Monday (Dec. 13) $245,440
Thursday, December 16 %271,840
Free Shipping Day (Dec. 17) $222,468
Sunday December 19 $330,941
If you look closely at those stats, you will always find Sunday as the busiest day of the eBay sales week. Overall, these are small numbers for jewelry sales, but also consider these are via mobile devices. We actually don't like the eBay process. It's too difficult for any retailer to maintain unless you have a full time website employee. However, we do have customers that post closeout and low ticket items to it all the time.
Advertising jewelry through Google AdWords saw huge spikes in cost per click this year for popular terms. We monitored common phrases including: engagement ring, diamond rings and jewelry store. The season started with regularly priced bids between $0.70 and $1.40 per click, but then spiked into the $13.50 range during the week of December 6th, then dropping to about $7.50 after December 13th.
The best ads to get clicks were giving specific prices that then went to specific product pages or catalogs that showed products within a few dollars of the advertised price. The next best clicked ads were those that stated they could solve the gift giver's problem; for example, "She will love this perfect ring" and "Give a ring she will love."
We also clearly measured that AdWords ads with high quality scores (above 7) still paid less than $2.50 per click, but you had to up your daily spending limit to at least $50 to gain traction in the sea of other advertisers.
In other news, we learned that Foursquare, a location-based service, reached 5 million users; meanwhile, Facebook Places is still not as widely used. Facebook's Android application is still seriously lacking compared to the iPhone version, so perhaps that's a factor. In any case we know that Foursquare is a great place to advertise and draw in customers. There's been a lot of press this season and major brand names are using TV ads to attract customers to check in at locations and get discounts. You should get into this game now so customers will find you. In fact, all location-based services continue to see a surge in activity.
QR Codes seem to finally hit the main stream subconsciousness. Many major brands are now including the square-dotted barcodes on their products, in store window,s and as huge signs on the sides of buildings. JCKOnline.com mentioned this several times in December 2010. The Camel cigarette brand even has them on their boxes now. If they are doing it, you certainly can expect the rest of the cigarette companies to follow in a few minutes. This is a short step away from mainstream conscious awareness.
We saw a lot more, but can't report on it in this already very long Daily Gold Nugget. With all these statistics, we'll close with a very interesting prediction from Visa stating that they expect $55 Million in online purchases using a Visa card on Christmas Day. This is a rising trend in the past few years.
We hope you all had a more profitable holiday season this year than last. On Monday, you should send out an email to your customers with some special offer if they come to your store to have their new jewelry adjusted or resized.