With 2021 bringing a bit more stability back to the Amazon marketplace and Prime Day returning to it’s normal summer cadence, our team has Q4 and Cyber 5 planning top of mind. Cyber 5 is a series of peak Ecommerce dates including Thanksgiving Eve, Cyber Friday, Cyber Saturday, Cyber Sunday and Cyber Monday. Cyber 5 is followed by a week of elevated sales often referred to as Cyber Week. To help get you started, we’ve put together insights from prior years and our top tips to totally crush it during BFCM weekend, Cyber Week 2021 and beyond.
Inventory - Start your inventory planning well in advance to avoid any complications in your supply chain or with Amazon FBA replenishment. With Prime Day 2021, many OMG clients experienced harsh, temporary inventory restrictions. To help alleviate this for Q4 2021, closely monitor your IPI score and sell through in the months leading up to Cyber 5. Implement coupons and deals as needed on slow selling products and place removal orders for products facing Long Term Storage Fees well in advance.
Delivery Badge - Monitor your shipping dates throughout Q4. If your ship date is post Christmas or the “Arrives after Christmas” badge appears on your product page, conversion rate and ad performance will decline on products that were experiencing a lift as gifts. Once you spot this, pivot quickly to reign in bids and budgets and avoid wasted ad spend.
Content Updates - Ensure any listing updates are finalized by the first week of November. If you experience a decline in performance or challenges with getting the changes accepted, this will allow time to get them corrected. For A+ Content, we are currently encountering a full 7 day waiting period for approval.
Get An Edge
Lightning Deals & Coupons - Submit your Cyber 5 deals and coupons early when the “Cyber Week'' time frame becomes available in the “Deal” and “Prime Exclusive Discounts'' dashboard. Monitor both on-Amazon and off-Amazon pricing 30 days leading up to Cyber 5 to avoid last minute deal cancelations and coupon suppressions.
Event-Specific Sponsored Brand Ads - Leverage time sensitive copy for Cyber 5, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and holidays. Target seasonal keywords relevant to each event or holiday on products that normally see a natural lift from gift buyers. Seasonal Sponsored Brand ads are also the perfect place to test holiday themed imagery in the “Custom Image” beta.
Storefront Update - If your product makes the perfect gift by nature, consider adding holiday-themed lifestyle imagery to put browsers in the buying and gift-giving mindset. For any ASINs that have scheduled deals, consider adding them to a temporary deal page on your storefront.
A+ Content & Product Page Refresh - A+ Content and your image gallery are also an excellent place to insert seasonal and holiday-themed lifestyle imagery. If on-page competitors are saturating your page, consider inserting a “Product Comparison” chart to the bottom of your A+ Content to feature some of your other products, take up more real estate and push other competitors down the page.
Amazon Posts - Schedule posts leading up to corresponding deals for increased traffic. Holiday-themed posts are a great way to get buyers into the holiday spirit and will now reflect on your storefront navigation bar.
Lower Funnel Sponsored Display Targeting - For any products that are not eligible for DSP, solidify your remarketing strategy by setting up view-based remarketing ads for customers who have viewed both your products and those who have viewed similar products.
Full Funnel Advertising
The Lead-Up -
- For heightened Brand Awareness leading up to Cyber 5, consider testing additional top of funnel DSP targeting segments such as Competitor Targeting, Similar Product Targeting, and In-Market Targeting.
- We recommend implementing top of funnel DSP as early as September or October with a minimal budget to allow plenty of time to collect data and ramp up during Cyber Week and peak Q4.
- Repurpose any new or holiday themed video content you’ve created to test and leverage OTT ads higher in the funnel.
- Submit any focused Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Cyber Week campaigns in advance to allow plenty of time to get them approved and ensure that they run during Cyber 5.
- Any campaigns with holiday or deal-specific messaging have to be scheduled to end within 24 hours of the event in order to get approved.
- Increase bids 2-4x higher than current bids on proven keywords with a strong return and multiple sales for top products prior to BFCM weekend.
- Any bid increases should be in place by Thanksgiving Day, however, rolling them out slowly in the weeks leading up to Cyber 5 will help you gain traction and capitalize on traffic increases.
- In terms of budget, expect a percentage increase similar to Prime Day, BUT be mindful of the fact that BFCM and Cyber Week is a longer event and sales volume and traffic will continue to see momentum 3 weeks post Cyber Monday.
- If you have a hard limit for advertising budgets, ensure a global cap is in place on your account prior to BFCM and Cyber Week.
The Main Event -
- Monitor your Sponsored Ads multiple times a day throughout Cyber 5 to avoid budgets maxing out. If budgets run out and your campaign is meeting your ROAS goals, continue to add budget.
- For any priority search phrases for ranking or sales velocity purposes, check rankings in an incognito window every few hours to ensure you are still winning the top of search position.
- If you lose Top of Search on any of your “must win” phrases during Cyber 5, consider increasing bids or increasing the TOS placement amplifier in relevant campaigns.
- Pay special attention to any campaigns intended to support Lightning Deals and Coupons on your top products.
Post Cyber 5 -
- Traffic on Amazon typically is 141% higher on average after Cyber Monday compared to the 14 days prior, according to Amazon.
- For that reason, we recommend slowly decreasing bids only on terms that have declined in performance rather than reverting back to your former bids all at once. This will allow you to continue riding the wave of increased traffic with high buying intent.
- DSP should be in play throughout Q4, but make it a core part of your strategy post Cyber 5 to maximize on the increased traffic.
- If you’ve invested in Cyber 5 deals and built a Deals tab on your Amazon storefront, consider placing a DSP order (campaign) to retarget customers who have shown interest in your deal but didn’t purchase redirecting them back to your Deals page.
- Consider scaling your DSP budgets for Retargeting campaigns not only during Cyber Week but also for the 3 weeks after. Given that some of this traffic will have already converted, exclusions should be set for past purchasers.
- Split test holiday-themed custom DSP creatives for products that naturally make great gifts by nature.
SBV Product Targeting Campaigns - Maximize your Sponsored Brand efforts by implementing the new product targeting segment into your Sponsored Brand Video strategy.
Customer Engagement Beta - If you already have a substantial number of brand followers on Amazon, ask your Amazon rep for access to the new “Customer Engagement” beta now to give you access to test email campaigns during Cyber 5.
Top of Funnel Sponsored Display Targeting - Consider testing new “In Market” and “Lifestyle” audiences on Sponsored Display ads for your top products. Though these are higher in the funnel, testing at low bids while there is heightened buying intent is worth consideration.