Black Friday-Cyber Monday 2018 – Top Retailers in Paid Search Advertising

Kantar Media analyzed paid search advertising performance among retailers during the 2018 Black Friday-Cyber Monday weekend, looking at U.S. Google text ad and product listing ad click share on 2500 popular retail product keywords across desktop and mobile search from November 23 through November 26. Keyword examples include ‘fitbit’, ‘canada goose’, ‘ugg boots’ and ‘mattress’.

Walmart led all advertisers in product listing ad clicks, generating a 10.8% desktop click share and a 5.7% mobile click share over the extended weekend. In recent years Walmart has moved away from text ads in its paid search strategy in recent years to focus its efforts on PLAs. Accordingly, Walmart was not present among the top 10 text ad sponsors for desktop or mobile search.

Amazon was the top text ad advertiser during from Black Friday through Cyber Monday, gaining 6.9% of all desktop text ad clicks on the 2500 retail keywords and 12.6% of all mobile text ad clicks.

This is the only second holiday season that Amazon has sponsored product listing ads on U.S. Google and it had a strong showing in desktop PLAs during the Black Friday-Cyber Monday weekend, ranking second with a 5% click share. However, the online giant did not crack the top 10 in mobile PLA clicks over the weekend.

Among the other top advertisers, Macy’s, Kohl’s, Wayfair and Hayneedle all ranked among the top 10 in clicks for both product listing ad and text ads in both desktop and mobile search. 

Mobile Product Listing Ads Drove 67% of Retail Product Clicks

Around 92% of all clicks on ads displaying for the 2500 retail product keywords went to product listing ads over the Black Friday-Cyber Monday weekend, with mobile PLAs accounting for nearly 67% and desktop PLAs accounting for 25%. Desktop text ads drove 5.9% of total clicks while clicks on mobile text ads made up 1.9%. 

This analysis gives a very good indication why Walmart has focused almost entirely on product listing ads over text ads in recent years, and why Amazon began sponsoring product listing ads two years ago after abstaining for years prior.

It also indicates that the top 10 mobile PLA advertisers should be considered the true winners of the Black Friday-Cyber Monday weekend. Ranked first and second in mobile PLA clicks, Walmart and Walmart-owned Jet.com accounted for 10.9% of mobile PLA clicks or 7.2% of total clicks across mobile and desktop PLAs and text ads—far more than any other advertiser.





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