Cyber Week and the Stat I Struggle to Accept

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Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and affiliate marketing

Written by Brook Schaaf

According to major data sources Adobe and Salesforce, their respective Cyber 5 and Cyber Week grew year over year more than generally expected — Adobe’s Cyber 5 from $35.3 billion to $38.1 billion, and Salesforce’s Cyber Week from $60.0 billion to $70.8 billion. Digital Commerce 360 has a helpful comparison article for further insights.

Closer to home, affiliate marketing appears to have fared nicely. Awin had a nice wrap-up in their podcast and written content on their site and Martech Record. The former noted, “Over Black Friday in the retail sector, the rate of transactions with a code rose from 33% to 36%.” The latter noted, “Across all categories, total advertiser revenue was up 6.5% for the Friday to Monday.”

For our part, FMTC actually saw a slight increase of 3.7% in deal volume versus last year on Black Friday, with more deals spread throughout the month. I’m proud to share that our deal processing speed leapt up 40% thanks to back-end improvements we implemented earlier this year.

Deals seem to come out earlier and earlier, though the consensus is that customers held out for Cyber 5/Week, probably winning the “Discount Chicken” game. One affiliate I spoke with characterized Amazon as having made an unsuccessful attempt to kick off Black Friday a week early this year. That said, the Jason & Scot podcast noted that Amazon sponsored a football game on Black Friday, an indication that customers are more and more comfortable staying home and shopping from their sofas.

All the data sources I reviewed said that mobile eclipsed desktop for at least the second year in a row. This seems totally unnatural to me and, like an old man, I spoke out a jeremiad against it on our team call yesterday morning, after which several people admitted that they engage in such behavior. Sadly, it appears to be true, which may bode ill for affiliate marketing because affiliates may be less likely to get credit for their sales.

Overall, despite certain challenges and shifts in behavior, it has been another positive year in the realm of Cyber Week and affiliate marketing. 

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