How are students spending the last days of summer? Finding ways to look their best for the upcoming school year, of course. “First day of school outfit” searches grew 96% from 2008 to 2009 with an even stronger and earlier interest this year.

On your landing pages, guide shoppers to the latest trends, and provide ideas for a fail-safe back-to-school wardrobe. Encourage add-on purchases with all the right accessories and footwear. Give guidance on how to dress to impress to build brand interest and loyalty this season.

We’re excited to announce that we recently completed our latest research study, regarding consumer shopping intentions for Holiday 2010, and hosted a "Think Holiday" webinar featuring results from that research on Wednesday.

In case you missed it, here's a quick update on three new trends we're seeing in the market:
  1. "Thrill of the hunt" -- the increase in private sales and group buying sites
  2. "The rise of the personal shopper" -- smartphones are changing the shopping landscape
  3. "We’ve made new friends" -- how new 'friends' engage with your brand

For more insights into Holiday 2010 be sure to view the Google Holiday Webinar.

Since the launch of AdWords in 2000, Google has worked with advertisers and their agencies to increase brand and product awareness -- and to drive sales -- by helping advertisers reach the right person, in the right place, at the right time, through the effective use of search advertising. The success of this tactic has generally been measured by connecting search advertising campaigns to revenue within the e-commerce domain.

As consumers have become accustomed to a multi-channel world, however, it has become important to look outside the "e-commerce box" to measure search campaign success. The goal in doing so is to find the correlation between search advertising and overall company sales, both online and offline, as customers are present in both places.

In recent times, a growing number of our customers have asked us and their agencies how they should approach the concept of quantifying online's impact on in-store sales. We recently thought through the concept with Razorfish and came up with a joint POV; you can find that on the Razorfish site, here.

Who doesn’t love a good deal? We all know consumers like to get the most bang for their buck. Savvy consumers continue to hunt for the best discounts, with “coupon” searches seeing a continual lift in volume.

As the fall season approaches, it comes as no surprise that consumers are on the prowl for back-to-school discounts. “Back-to-school coupon” searches jumped 70% from 2008 to 2009, and are on track to top last year. These coupons will encourage shoppers to purchase, both online and in-store.

How do you make sure you don't miss sales from these consumers who are looking for the best prices? Prominently position value and sale information in your ad messaging to educate consumers on your well-priced product offerings.

As we draw closer to Q4, it's a good time to make sure you're getting all the traffic you can from free sources. Most of you are probably already participating in Google Product Search, a free and powerful way for retailers to connect their products to millions of shoppers on the web. If you are not, visit to get started. Once you are using Google Product Search, here are some tips to make sure you're getting the most out of this free product:
  • Submit all required and suggested attributes, including "unique product identifiers." These unique identifiers will soon be necessary to be included in Google Product Search listings.
  • Sign up for product-based ad formats, like Google Product Extensions. These ad formats are powered by your product data feed, and they provide customers with more information than standard text ads.
  • Submit product reviews. Retailers who submit product reviews to Google will have their logos displayed on product pages when their reviews appear, adding another source of free traffic.
  • Sign up for Google Places, which will help online shoppers find your store locations and hours and complete the cross-channel shopping experience.
Posted by Vivek Tata, Product Marketing Manager

Thanks to the Google agency blog for sharing this post.

Google's latest research shows that consumers are feeling good about the holiday season: 64% of shoppers plan to spend the same or more this holiday season as they spent in 2009.

The categories on which consumers plan to spend more this holiday season than last year? Take a look at the top 10 list:

Source: Google/OTX State of Shopping, May 2010

Search data also supports the placement of electronics as the top category in this list. An estimated 11 million tablet PCs and 10 million eReaders will ship this year worldwide. Google Insights for Search shows significant consumer interest in items such as 3D TVs; searches for this product have grown by 300% since the beginning of 2010.

So, make sure you have developed your marketing strategy for this year's holiday shopping season and take advantage of consumer excitement for new products.


Interested in making the most of holiday 2010?

Join us on Tuesday, August 24 at 11 AM PST as we share findings on the latest consumer shopping trends and discuss key strategies marketers can implement to increase holiday revenue.

During this webinar we will discuss:
  • Learnings from Holiday 2009
  • New Online Trends
  • Recommendations for Holiday 2010
Tuesday, August 24, 2010

11 AM PST / 1 PM CST / 2 PM EST

To register for this webinar, please visit:

Lady Gaga has over 12 million Facebook fans. Starbucks just surpassed 10 million Facebook fans last week. It's social media, and it's fun. But how many of your customers are fans of your brand and what do they want out of that relationship?

According to our latest research, only 50% of Facebook users “friend” brands; this means that more than half of users don’t friend brands, and the ones who do generally just friend one or two.

For the consumers who do friend your brand, what are they looking for? Discounts!

So when developing your social media strategy, keep in mind that consumers are looking primarily to receive promotions, with secondary goals of learning new information first and being entertained.

*Please note the source was originally cited incorrectly. Source: Chadwick Martin Bailey and iModerate Research Technologies as cited in press release, noted in eMarketer, March 10, 2010. Ages 18+. Note: Respondents are fans of at least one brand.

We all have friends who procrastinate their holiday purchases until the last few days before Christmas, but do you know anyone who has already started their holiday shopping? You should! By the end of this month, 35% of consumers will already have begun their holiday shopping.

Similar to last year, in 2010 holiday shoppers are starting their shopping early and will likely be ending late. Every consumer differs in their research and shopping patterns, so spend your advertising budget wisely. To target the early birds, consider running a "Christmas in Summer" type of promotion; over the past few weeks Target, Toys R' Us and Sears have gotten consumers in the holiday spirit.

Most importantly, if you haven't started funding your holiday search campaign, you should! And keep funding your programs throughout the next five months as more consumers start their research and complete their holiday purchases.

Source: Google/OTX State of Shopping, May 2010.

Posted by Heidi Spector, Google Retail Team