Weekly Digital Breakdown – 9.17.21
Weekly Digital Breakdown
Sep 17 2021
Instagram is Ringing in the Holiday Szn
Believe it or not, the holiday shopping season is now upon us. To help marketers prepare their social strategies, Instagram has released a new guide with ways to maximize their promotional ad dollars on the platform.
The ‘Holiday Szn’ mini-site provides best practices for connecting product catalogs, adding product description and detail, and effective ways to meet shoppers throughout the shopping season. The high-level overview highlights starting points and links to more in-depth details, bringing a comprehensive view for advertisers of all types.
With this season likely to continue to be more ecommerce driven, social media platforms are sure to drive sales from discovery to purchase.
Previous pandemic shopping habits are reemerging ahead of the holidays
As COVID variants arise and precautions ramp up, shoppers are returning to their early pandemic behaviors. Shoppers are more inclined to not only prefer wearing masks themselves, but also patronize businesses that enforce mask policies. Holiday shopping habits are certain to feel the toll as nearly 60% of shoppers are “very or somewhat concerned” about holiday plans being disrupted by the pandemic and are proceeding with caution. As a result, online shopping and curbside pickup are seeing another boost and will likely continue to do so through the holiday season.
In addition to these changes, rising freight costs and inventory constraints on the supply side are already being felt by retailers. This will likely result in less product availability, rising prices, and a higher demand for gift cards which marketers should prepare for in their holiday strategies.
Despite all of this, Mastercard still predicts retail sales for the year-end holiday season will climb 7.4% this year over last year, and 11.1% over the same period in 2019, driven primarily by ecommerce sales.
Google is Now Enforcing Unique Product Identifier Requirements
Google has officially started enforcing its requirement for product listing feeds with Google Merchant Center to have unique product identifiers (UPIs). These include; Global Trade Item Numbers (GTINs), Manufacturer Part Numbers (MPNs), and brand names in the product feed you submit to Google Merchant Center. Products in the free listings will also be included in the enforcement.
So what does it mean? Google can disapprove product feeds if they don’t have UPIs. Google said “different products that use the same Global Trade Item Numbers (GTIN) with the same variant attributes will be considered ambiguous and will be disapproved.” Google also said “if a group of products are identified as duplicates, only one will remain active and eligible to show in free listings.”
Google provided more about unique product identifiers, including how to troubleshoot issues and what to do if you don’t have them. All advertisers taking advantage of the free Google Merchant Center should take note as soon as possible to avoid products being rejected or disapproved.