Following last year’s drop in Black Friday consumer spending from $9B to $8.9B, questions arose whether this year would see healthier consumer shopping patterns, and the results are in: Shoppers spent $9.12B this past Friday, opening a stronger than expected holiday weekend, and allaying some of the market-based concerns plaguing the commerce space.
Much of this growth was driven by advertising, including retail media, paid search, and paid social.
The annual Cyber 5—the five days of Thanksgiving through Cyber Monday—have historically been huge days for brands and retailers. Their importance cannot be understated. For some, capitalizing on these key dates has been the difference between a successful and disappointing year.
But, heading into Cyber 5 last week, there was a bit of a question mark hanging over this year’s holiday shopping season. While it was still going to be massive, current economic concerns regarding the ability and willingness of shoppers to spend this holiday season were understandable.
If Black Friday indicates how the rest of the year will play out, it’s a good sign for advertisers!
Let’s take a look at how advertisers approached the biggest shopping day of the year across digital’s three biggest channels: paid search, paid social, and retail media. (NOTE – check the Skai blog later this week for a full recap of the 2022 Cyber 5 period.)
Advertisers invested heavily on Thanksgiving and Black Friday
2022 Black Friday was a clear success for marketers—especially for retail media ads that generated 192% higher revenue on Black Friday when compared to the November daily average. This was partially fueled by an average order size increase of 112% over the November days leading up to the Cyber 5.
Even though brands have started upping their spending earlier in the season each year, the first significant jump occurred on Thanksgiving. Versus the daily November average, marketers spent 52% more on retail media, 56% more in paid search spend, and 65% more on paid social on Thanksgiving.
This marketer surge continued into Black Friday. Retail media ad spending was up 188% over the daily average in November, paid search spending was up 160%, and paid social was up 76%.
While advertisers were ready with open wallets to spend big on these key Cyber 5 shopping days, they also paid more for each ad. Due to intense competition, retail media CPCs unsurprisingly rose by 43% on Black Friday when compared to the daily November average. However, marketers were slightly more efficient this year. There was a 3% decrease in the average retail media CPC from Black Friday 2021. This trend was also seen in other channels; paid search Black Friday CPCs decreased by 13% year-over-year, and paid social CPMs decreased by 15% versus the same period.
2022 vs 2021 Black Friday retail media advertising results by category
Ad spending was up. Retail media advertisers across nearly all categories increased their Black Friday spending in 2022 when compared to 2021, with a few standouts being:
- Food (+159%)
- Internet and Telecom (+105%)
- Makeup & Cosmetics (+91%)
- Computers (+72%)
Ad-driven revenue was up. More retail media spending generated greater revenue this year on Black Friday when compared to last year:
- Food (+91%)
- Makeup & Cosmetics (+72%)
- Shaving & Grooming (+61%)
- Hobbies & Leisure (+58%)
CPCs were down. While retail media CPCs increased on Black Friday compared to the month of November leading up to the holiday weekend, 2022 CPCs dropped on average across many categories compared to Black Friday CPCs in 2021.
Categories that saw bigger than average YoY CPC reductions include:
- Skin Care (-34%)
- Hobbies & Leisure (-30%)
- Household Supplies (-24%)
- Shaving & Grooming (-18%)
How will the full Cyber 5 perform this year for advertisers?
The first two days of 2022’s Cyber 5 beat conservative industry forecasts for Black Friday, with the kick-off of the holiday shopping season proving that shoppers are prepared to spend during the holidays despite inflation.
Thanksgiving and Black Friday are far from the end of the holiday season, with the biggest shopping day of the year, Cyber Monday, in everyone’s sights. The industry is poised to see how the rest of the holiday shopping season unfolds.
Please check back later this week here on the Skai blog for our complete 2022 Cyber 5 recap.
Skai helps advertisers make the most of their holiday season investment
Skai empowers the world’s leading brands and agencies across industries to manage omnichannel digital marketing campaigns. Our omnichannel marketing platform includes solutions for retail media, paid search, paid social, and app marketing. We’ll keep you at the forefront of the digital evolution with data and insights, marketing execution, and measurement tools that work together to drive powerful brand growth.
Client results include:
- 461% increase in Amazon Ads ROAS and 57% increase in page traffic for Bondi Sands
- 280% increase in installs for DraftKings
- 10% increase in new account openings for Royal Bank of Canada
- 756% increase in conversions for New York Magazine
- 600% increase in Facebook leads for Inova
For more information or to check out our platform for yourself, please schedule a quick demo today!