We’re officially in Q4! No need to panic if you’ve followed our monthly retail prep series (here’s our post for September, in case you need to catch up). Now that we’ve hit October, and the holidays are bearing down, I’ve got four initiatives in mind for you to address.

If there are gourds around, the holidays aren’t far behind.

Google Analytics

Ideally, you’ve had your site tagged with the Google Analytics tag for some time now. If so, this will be an especially great resource to utilize in Q4. (If not, start here.) Depending on your business, November and December will likely be two of your hottest months, so be sure to analyze the metrics during this time. What pages are yielding the highest time on site? Where are you seeing the largest bounce rates? Where are people dropping out of the conversion process? And compare the Google Analytics reporting to your channel reporting as well. Google Analytics won’t count view-through conversions, but it will de-dedupe click-based conversions across all channels and at least let you keep a pulse, from a last-touch perspective, on which channels are performing the best.

Google Trends

A very helpful tool during the holidays, Google Trends can be a fantastic way to look at the seasonality of what customers are searching for. This can help you get ahead of that demand for your products, and if you are looking at expanding your product offerings during the holidays, the tool can help you determine what type of products to expand into.

Remarketing

To keep it simple and straightforward, remarketing during the holidays is crucial! Create lists for site visitors who did not purchase, people who have added to their cart but not purchased, and other similar lists. If you’re doing dynamic retargeting, you can link it to your feed to show users the actual items they have viewed. If you’re only doing regular retargeting, you can still tailor ads to where people have been on the site. Show discount ads to folks who have added to carts but not purchased, and group other audiences by types of products so you can show them the most relevant ads. For example, if you sell clothing, have a men’s pants audience that gets pants ads, women’s skirts gets a skirt ad, etc.

Bidding

Bidding is one of the biggest levers at your disposal. Staying on top of your bids during November and December can be the difference between losing or obtaining thousands of dollars of revenue. If you aren’t staying on top of your impression share and your average position during the busy months, you may see your profitable keywords begin to lose volume. Make sure to monitor your bids closely and continue to push up where you see the best returns. Your competitors will definitely be aggressive in going after customers, so be ready to do the same!

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Ryan Noonan
I've been in the digital marketing world since 2012. When I'm not building and optimizing marketing campaigns, I like to spend my time outdoors, playing music, reading, writing and hanging out with friends. I also have a dog named Cooper, who looks like the white Direwolf "Ghost" from Game of Thrones.