The ecommerce industry experienced a record shattering holiday selling season. At the heart of Google Shopping’s growth in Q4 2016 versus that of 2015 was the immense increase in revenue over the course of the Black Friday to Cyber Monday weekend. Our analysis also revealed that quarter-over-quarter growth trended in the positive while overall Costs-To-Convert remained virtually the same.
Shopper Behavior YoY & QoQ2016 has really been all about Mobile shopping. People are using their smart phones and mobile devices not only to start their purchase journey but to finish it as well. On average, mobile searches increased by 51% while clicks on product ads from mobile devices exploded by a staggering 334%. Product searches and clicks on product ads matched each other in Q3 growth, each both seeing a 9% increase.
Shoppers often hit the search engines very hard during Q4 simply due to the incredible savings from both Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals. The shopping journey seems to start earlier and earlier with each passing year.
Compared to the same period in 2015, retail-related searches that triggered Shopping ads rose by just over 44% and clicks on Shopping ads grew by around 34%.
As far as quarterly results go, Shopping ads were triggered roughly 18% more in Q4 2016 than in Q3 of the same year. Clicks on ads jumped slightly as well, reaching just over 7%.
Device Level Searches (And Conversions)
Shoppers continued to invest a distinct amount of time searching on mobile devices and smartphones from Q3 to Q4. Though the increase was a bit less significant than that which we saw from Q2 to Q3, mobile searches that triggered Google Shopping ads jumped just over 109%.
It was on both Computers and Tablets that shoppers seemed to spend the most time doing their searches and purchasing. Tablet-based searches grew by just over 229% while shoppers searched 800% more often on Computers in a Q3 to Q4 comparison.
It was on mobile devices, however, where shoppers converted more as compared to other devices from Q3 to Q4. Mobile device conversions for Shopping ads jumped dramatically by roughly 195% while Tablets rose by around 80% and Computers 97%.
Store Owners Cashed In & Saved
While retailers in general are continuing to increase their ad spends on Google Shopping, it has not been without significant growth in revenue as well.
From Q3 to Q4, Shopping campaign revenues grew by an average of 22%. Even more significant though was the increase in comparison to 2015’s Q4 with retailers earning just over 54% more from Shopping ads in revenue.
All while store owners were reaping the rewards from Google Shopping, Average CPCs went down across the board and in a 2015 to 2016 comparison, retailers saved on average 15% on cost-per-clicks. A 2016 quarter-over-quarter analysis revealed that from Q3 to Q4, retailers barely spent any more in cost-to-convert, around 1% on average.
Device Effects On Quarter-over-Quarter Revenue
Just as the number of conversions increased per each device on which Shopping ads were served, so did the revenue generated from those ads.
Revenue from Mobile device Shopping ads jumped by an average of 230% whereas Tablets went up only 78% and Computers stayed strong at 194%.
Overall, retailers experienced on average a 20% increase in ROAS from Shopping campaigns from Q3 to Q4.
Black Friday & Cyber Monday YoY
Probably the most significant selling period for ecommerce businesses every year, the Black Friday to Cyber Monday weekend in 2016 produced some very positive results on Google Shopping alone.
Revenue from Google Shopping campaigns from 2015’s Black Friday that of 2016’s jumped by around 47%. Over double that, Cyber Monday saw over a 105% increase for retailer campaigns.
It was not surprising that Computers controlled the majority of the impression share for retail searches that triggered Shopping ads. 46% of searches came from Computers on Black Friday and 55% on Cyber Monday.