Valentine's Day is nearly upon us and the search for gifts is well underway. Well, for some of us anyway; Valentine's Day queries tend to start growing over a month before 14th February. If you haven't begun yet, you're not alone – historically searches don't really ramp up until 12th February. So the good news is that there's still time to make updates to your paid search activities and capitalise on demand!

Key statistics

In a recent catch up with Google they revealed some interesting statistics with regards to customer behaviour at this time of year. Key highlights include:

  • Mobile – It is predicted that 60% of searches will be on mobile in 2017, as people strive to keep their searches a secret from their partner.
  • YouTube – There are 2.2 million videos for Valentine's Day ideas, with the top searches being for gift inspiration and outfits. As YouTube is the second largest search engine after Google a well targeted ad on YouTube could yield very positive results.
  • Men vs Women – Historically it is women that spend more time searching for gifts than men (on average 3 times longer), but both leave it until the last minute. This being said men spend more on gifts than women; in 2016 on average men spent £51, while women spent £31.

Top gifts – Valentine's Day is a valuable market to tap into, in 2016 it was worth £550 million to retailers. Though the classics like: cards, flowers, and chocolates remain popular; the greatest growth is being seen in experience days, events and fine dining. These are a favourite of those people who are leaving their search until the last minute, when delivery of a gift is no longer an option.

Valentines day worth to retailers

Top searches – As we now know, many people are looking for a gift at the last minute and this is reflected in their searches as they seek inspiration. As such many of the top searches are unbranded queries around gift ideas.

PPC top tips

We've been working with a number of our clients recently to make sure their accounts are Valentine's Day ready; here are a few handy tips to help you make the most of the run up to the special day!

1. Make use of customer match

As well as using remarketing lists to target your previous customers and increase your bids for these users. This is also an excellent opportunity to make use of customer match – targeting customers who are known to make purchases at this time of year or around similar events (e.g. Christmas, Mother's Day, Father's Day). 
For more information on customer match see our blog on the topic.

2. Use specific ad copy

Don't forget to update your ad copy when targeting Valentine's traffic, particularly users on your customer match list. Valentine's Day is a good opportunity to be more playful than you might normally be – this occasion over all others is the time that the heart takes the lead over the head. If you're able to deliver products quickly, let people know up front as that will really be a draw for those last minute shoppers. Using countdown copy here can be particularly useful in encouraging users to seize the initiative and make their purchase before it's too late to deliver.

3. Cater for mobile

Mobile searching is still growing so don't miss out on these potential customers. Make sure your site is optimised for mobile users and that you're making full use of call and location extensions. You may find that mobile users are more valuable to you at this time and that it's worth increasing your bids for mobile searches to help drive store traffic if you have a bricks and mortar presence. This being said never forget about the importance of being live across all device types as modern searchers are always moving seamlessly from one device to another. So where someone may do their research on their mobile they might then make a purchase on their desktop, so it is important to be visible through all of the stages of the customer's journey.

4. Demographics for Search Ads

Knowing your audience is key here, and will be all year round but bear in mind that your audience may change at times like this as people look to buy for others rather than themselves. Demographics for Search Ads (or DFSA) allows you to target different age groups and genders, so you can adjust your bids and even tailor your ad copy to these audiences. As well as this you may want to consider increasing your bids for men at this time knowing that they are more likely to be the greater spenders. We have seen very positive results by making use of DFSA, 
find out more about these and this method.

For more tips on making the most out of PPC around Valentine's day be sure to check out 
last year's blog post. If you have a sneaking suspicion that your account could be doing more this Valentine's, make use of our free health check service.

You can get read more about how we've worked with clients on their paid search campaigns in our
case study section. If you would like any help planning or improving your PPC campaigns, we would very much like to hear from you.

About Chris

Chris is a Geography graduate who recently joined our paid search team. His eye for detail, love of statistics and enthusiasm for developing his skills and expertise mean he has a bright future! He is a keen Ultimate Frisbee player and rock climber in his spare time, demonstrating his competitive spirit and determination; characteristics his clients will enjoy as he strives to help them beat their competition and achieve great results.