After what could only be described as a troubling and unpredictable first half of the year, things began to look up in the Q3 2020 world of ecommerce. While we can only vouch for what we’re seeing here at Slickdeals, there were a few key takeaways that came out of the quarter.
Media budgets are back
Firstly, advertiser spend began to rebound as early as July, even despite the fact that Prime Day had been delayed until suspected dates in October (now confirmed to be October 13th & 14th). Ecommerce marketers and brand marketers alike slowly resumed interest in new promotional campaigns, with a particular eagerness to prepare for Q4 and a continued interest in content marketing, especially. Budgets that had been previously locked up in response to the COVID-19 pandemic began to loosen and it became clear that unused funds would be critical in brand coverage and compensatory exposure throughout the rest of the year.
Q4 will be different but strong this year
This purchasing pattern was underscored by announcements from multiple major retailers like Walmart, Best Buy, and Target stating that they would not be hosting an in-store Thanksgiving shopping experience this year. Without an in-store experience, we suspected early-on that retailers would shift their focus to digital channels. A stronger reliance on online shopping combined with Prime Day happening just weeks before the traditional holiday shopping season would mean a colossal Q4.
Consumers are still ready & willing to shop
Likewise, consumers have indicated in Q3 that they will be up for the challenge. As pandemic conditions settled, the increased traffic and online shopping activity resulting from Q2 stay-at-home orders actually remained rather strong. Specifically, Slickdeals saw the largest increase in home office and home improvement related search terms, such as “monitor,” “printer,” and “Dell,” and tools brands like “Dewalt” and “Ryobi.” As far as categories, during Q3 Slickdeals saw the most user interest in Home and Entertainment deals. Thus, we expect strong shopping activity levels to persist as the earlier and longer overall holiday shopping period quickly approaches.
Major changes are happening… and more on the way!
As we anticipate the upcoming season, it’s evident that competition is already heating up. To name just a few other interesting things that happened in Q3…
- We saw the release of Walmart+, a worthy competitor to Amazon’s notorious Prime membership program.
- Chase Bank launched an entirely new credit card called the Chase Freedom Flex℠ Card.
- Industry conversations and the best publisher products (including upcoming targeting capabilities at Slickdeals!) are focusing more and more on the value of unique first-party data, especially as we face the imminent deprecation of the third-party cookie.
- Even the conferences are resuming! So much has been happening that AdWeek was even able to host a full week of compelling session content from an array of different companies in their September BrandWeek event.)
Undoubtedly, we’ve seen a full third quarter, but it was a good quarter nonetheless. We’re very excited to see what’s in-store (pun intended) for ecommerce in Q4 and look forward to continued growth with our partners.
Briana Hall | Director of Business Development & Strategy